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Postgraduate research projects

A number of students have been involved in postgraduate research programmes supported by the PRASADA team.

MPhil and PhD researchers

Yusuf Adams

'Beyond the Minaret: a Space for the Spirit, a Place for the People'.

Fiona Buckee

The aim of this thesis was to reconstruct, through drawings, the original design of the spire from Temple 45, a ruined Latina temple from the World Heritage Site of Sanchi in Madhya Pradesh. The hundreds of un-analysed architectural fragments from the temple that survive on site were the primary data for this project. Fiona completed her PhD in 2010.

Fiona now works as a Research Associate and Lecturer at SOAS University of London.

Megha Chand Inglis

'Interrogating contemporary architectural traditions: the Sompuras of Gujarat and British Suburbia'.

Himanish Das

The study was entitled 'Principles of design, architectural form, language and construction techniques, in the traditional architecture of Jaisalmer'. It focused on the sandstone havelis (urban courtyard houses) of the desert city of Jaisalmer, north-west Rajasthan, India. The city has been much admired by contemporary Indian architects but their understanding has been a Modernist one, based largely on the idea of 'spatial organisation'. This was the first systematic study of the architectural tradition of Jaisalmer. Himanish completed his PhD in 2006.

Sona Datta

A detailed and comprehensive exposition of temple architecture of the Early Pantiya era 6th-11th C based on extensive field research into dozens of sites (many of them previously incorrectly classified, neglected or even lost and forgotten) and analysis of temple inscriptions (many directly translated from the original medieval Tamil). This research revealed the atypical nature of sponsorship in the region by merchant classes and local communities and the corresponding role that religious architecture came to play in local life. Sona completed her PhD in 2011.

Sona is currently working as Curator at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts.

Ananya Gandotra

The study introduced computer to the study of Indian temple architecture for the first time, as an effective tool to test, analyse and interpret complex temple forms. The work addressed the need for the scholarship to analyse the development and transformation in Indian temple architecture in terms of its three-dimensional form, rather than in terms either of plan or of elevation.

The north Indian Shekhari temple type is analysed, showing roof plans, and presenting three-dimensional studies of two well-known temples at the central Indian temple site of Khajuraho: the Lakshmana temple (ca. A.D. 954) and Kandhariya Mahadeva temple (ca. A.D. 1030).

Ananya completed her PhD in 2007 and is currently Head of Design at Birla Estate.

Laxshmi Greaves

'Computer Modelling and Analysis of the Shekhari Form of Indian Temple'.

Rupa Raje Gupta

The study of the wada of Maharashtra was the first systematic overview of the courtyard house form in the present day state of Maharashtra, across its five traditional regions. The study documented and analysed the wada in order to develop an understanding of a regional type of the courtyard house form. An attempt has been made to weave socio cultural, historical and geographical aspects which became tools in understanding the development of the wada.

Rupa completed her PhD in 2007 and is now Operations Management and Decision Scientist at NIILM-CMS.

Amna Jahangir

'Colonial Impact on Urbanism of the West Punjab: Town Morphology as an Imperial Imperative',

Amita Kanekar

This project is an architectural study and documention of two temples of the Ikkeri Nayaka period.The objectives were to produce the first complete architectural documentation of these buildings; to provide a comprehensive description of form, composition, stylistic emulations, as well as construction and to investigate the meaning and pattern in the designs, including the architectural and other processes which led to the heterogeinity. Amita completed her PhD in 2009.

Amita is a writer and author of 'A Spoke in the Wheel: A Novel About the Buddha' published in 2005.

Yashaswini Sharama

This study reached an understanding of the development of the city of Bangalore, focusing on the architecture and settlement pattern of its earliest urban area, the Pētē and the oval Fort. It identified the nature of the cultures underlying the architecture of the city by tracing the development chronologically from its establishment in the 16th century to its fortification and expansion during the rule of Hyder Ali (r. 1761-1782 AD) and Tipu Sultan (r. 1782-1799 AD), explaining various functional aspects affecting the form of the city, notably the shift in the character of the Pētē from a largely mercantile settlement to a military one.

Yashaswini completed her PhD in 2007 and is currently Associate Professor at Dayananda Sagar School of Architecture.

Devdutt Shatri

The aim of this thesis was to develop a theoretical framework that is based on the body and on the theme of movement, for the analysis, interpretation and creation of architecture. It was based on a proposal that movement rather than form may be the way forward for architecture.

Doria Tichit

This thesis was dedicated to the analysis of the Udayeśvara temple built at Udayapur (Vidisha district, Madhya Pradesh) in the second half of the 11th century. The aim was to reveal the significance of the Udayeśvara temple in the history of the Paramāra dynasty, architecturally and sculpturally.

Doria completed her PhD in 2011 and is currently Executive Director at L'ahah.

Research degrees completed at De Montfort University

PRASADA was founded in 1995 and was originally based at De Montfort University. The PRASADA research group moved to the Welsh School of Architecture in 2004.

These are thee research degrees completed at De Montfort University between 1998 and 2005.

  • Ashutosh Sohoni, Temples of the Marathas in Maharashtra (PhD 1998)
  • Meera Dass, Udayagiri, a Sacred Hill: Architecture, Sculpture, Landscape (PhD 2001)
  • Shikha Jain, The Havelis of Rajasthan: Form and Identity (PhD 2002)
  • Deepanjana Danda, Maharashtra and the Cross-Fertilisation of Style of Brahmanical Cave Temples in India (PhD 2003)
  • Ajay Khare, The Tradition of Temple Architecture in Bengal: 9th-16th C. (PhD 2004)
  • Jyoti Sharma, The Urban Order of Shahjahanabad, 1639-1911 AD (PhD 2005)
  • Anuradha Nambiar, Mapping a Site: Geographies of Cultural Transformation - a Study of the Thamburan Palace, Thrissur (MPhil 2005)