I am somewhat of a research omnivore with diverse topics and interests. Though I primarily operate within a scientific paradigm, my work is inter-disciplinary, problem-based, and (often) collaborative. The research methods I employ are diverse, driven by the question at hand including laboratory-based ‘bench science’ studies; mathematical modeling; econometric/statistical approaches; survey-based data collection and analysis; and expert elicitation and lay interviews.
My current work can be classified into three broad categories:
(i) Air Quality, Development and Health
I work on how reductions in conventional air pollutants and greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions go hand in hand in India, and by extension, in other parts of the developing world. My students, postdoc, and I have used a combination of modeling, laboratory studies, and field measurements to assess the role of pollution prevention policies in air quality improvements and GHG reductions. Studies have focused on specific sectors (such as transportation, and households), technological artifacts (such as improved cookstoves, auto rickshaws), as well as economy-wide co-benefits of air quality improvements on climate mitigation (and vice-versa).
(ii) Climate Science and Development
Capacity to understand, assess, and act upon scientific knowledge is critical to coping with climate change. In much of the developing world, this capacity is lacking. This strand of my work analyzes the challenge of incorporating scientific knowledge into policies aimed at mitigation and adaptation of climate change in the developing world. The research aims to shed light on the drivers that shape capacity at the science-policy interface in developing countries. Conversely, it aims to suggest ways in which multilateral scientific institutions might better incorporate developing country concerns and interests.
(iii) Emerging Technologies
This work seeks to understand the perception of the risks, benefits, and ethical dilemmas introduced by emerging technologies (biotechnologies such as transgenics and gene editing and nanotechnologies) with an express interest in differences in expert and public views and the implications of these for governance. I seek research that will better enable governance dialogues wherein both communities (experts and the public) understand the other well and can reasonably address the critical regulatory, ethical, and social dilemmas involved.