Madras Institute of Development Studies (MIDS)

MIDS, a unique social science institution located in South India, involved in research, teaching and training on development issues from an interdisciplinary perspective, is about to celebrate its Golden Jubilee in 2021-22. A National Institute, MIDS supports the formulation of planning for regional and national governments and also publishes in English and Tamil on multiple issues of development. Apart from its own Ph.D. program, MIDS also trains other scholars through its annual methodology workshops and regular national and international conferences on different social sciences themes. Apart from teaching in other institutions, faculty members also undertake research in a comparative perspective through institutional collaborations. MIDS has been recognized by the Government of Tamil Nadu to incubate and develop a Centre of Excellence in Social Sciences (COESS) to nurture excellence in the social sciences given the relatively poor state of social science teaching and research in southern India.


There are many synergies and complementarities in the goals of the HaB and MIDS such as attention to region without losing sight of global complexities. Some of the collaborative pedagogical activities with HaB (Activities 1 and 2 below) are already in experimental stage, and potentially could serve as templates as HaB moves into the second phase and MIDS is contemplating its next fifty years.


Activity 1

An annual Social Sciences Winter School in collaboration with French Institute of Pondicherry-HaB- to train graduate students on methodological and crosscutting approaches in social science research and to foster a cross-border research and education network community.

Activity 2

MIDS-HAB and Kenyon College Yearly Writing Workshops to provide an opportunity for activists and scholars to critically think about and translate their experiences and embedded knowledge and practices into alternate pedagogies and entry points for research.

Activity 3

One year/two-year Post-Masters/Masters/Diploma Program that would train a new generation of “Generalists with Special Skills” who would be able to analyze and address multi-dimensional development issues. This program aims to be unique by:

  • Combining relevant research and pedagogical tools from interpretative traditions to address multi-dimensional development problems.
  • Developing practical skills through two summers of intense field training to provide hands on, problem-solving experience for students, one each in India and Africa.
  • Creating a South-South teaching and learning environment, with Western professionalism and Southern sensibilities to meet the problems of a rapidly changing world.
  • Bringing together the complementarities of HaB partners, for which there is a lot of potential interest within the proposed HaB consortium.

Activity 4

Specialized international workshops on HaB themes such as Comparative histories of regional trading and producing communities such as Chettinadu, Social and Food Justice, Material Culture, comparative Archaeology and Political Ecology of Care.   


Contact Persons:

Dr. P.G. Babu, director, MIDS

Prof. M. Vijayabaskar

POINT (80.270186 13.0836939)