Ramya Ramanath, Associate Professor and Chair of the International Public Service degree at DePaul’s School of Public Service, teaches graduate courses on cross-sector relations, sustainable international development, the management of international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and public policy implementation.
Her research, spread over three continents, draws on disciplinary perspectives in organizational behavior, urban sociology, planning, anthropology, and political science. Her projects are situated in the very organizations that seek her advice in their continuous improvement efforts. In particular, she analyzes the behavior of international and domestic NGOs/nonprofit organizations in the context of their interactions with three key stakeholders: 1) government agencies; 2) other NGOs/nonprofits; and, 3) intended beneficiaries.
Her most recent publication is a book titled A Place to Call home: Women as Agents of Change in Mumbai (July 2018). This book is the product of an ethnographic field study in which Ramanath examines the lives of women displaced by slum clearance and relocated to the largest slum resettlement site in Asia. Through conversations with diverse women―of different ages, levels of education, types of employment, marital status, ethnicity, caste, religion, and household make-up―Ramanath recounts how women negotiate a drastic change in environment, from makeshift housing in a park slum to ownership of a high-rise apartment in a posh Mumbai suburb. Each phase of their city lives reflects how women initiate change and disseminate a vision valuable to planners intent on urban and residential transformations. She urges the concerted engagement of residents in design, development, and evaluation of place-making processes in cities and within their own neighborhoods especially.
Her other recent publications have appeared in World Development, Religions, Evaluation and Program Planning, Voluntary Sector Review, and The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity and Nationalism. Her other research and CV may be accessed on her personal webpage http://www.ramyaramanath.com/
In the years prior to her academic career in the U.S., Ramanath helped start a micro-finance institution in Southern India and worked in housing finance and development agencies in both urban and rural India. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, a Master’s in Social Work, both from India, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Design & Planning from Virginia Tech.