Aarthi is a PhD Candidate in City Design and Development at MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning. She is interested in the spatial politics of the built environment, particularly in relation to heritage conservation in rapidly urbanizing contexts. Her dissertation research considers the role of colonial-era heritage in negotiating conflict in contemporary societies mired in ethno-racial politics with a particular focus on UNESCO’s World Heritage Program in South and Southeast Asian cities.
Aarthi has over five years of professional experience as an architect working in Singapore, New York City, and India. She received her Master of City Planning from MIT in 2019. She also holds a Master of Science in Architecture from Pratt Institute, and a Bachelor of Architecture from Anna University.