Sustainable practices to meet shelter needs in India

Piyush Kumar Tiwari

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    9 Citations (Scopus)


    Adequate shelter for all is one of the most pressing challenges faced by developing countries. Based on its census of 1991, India had a shortage of 18.5 million houses in 199 1, and this number would have swollen since then. The construction sector represents the most pressing need, namely shelter. Technologies that are environmentally sustainable are another important issue in countries that are on the path to development. Earlier researchers have indicated that construction activity contributes 17% of the carbon dioxide emissions in India. This paper interweaves various issues and proposes a construction strategy for the Indian housing sector. Affordability of a house and availability of building materials for its construction are the main constraints upon access to shelter. This paper analyzes the possibility of containing cost and adopting technologies that can achieve lower emissions. Recent government policy statements have indicated that an annual supply of two million new houses would be required to meet the current shortage of housing in India. This paper estimates the investment and material requirements for the construction of two million houses and evaluates the construction technologies commonly used as well as low-cost techniques. It is asserted that proper selection of such techniques and material can reduce the costs and emissions substantially.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)65-83
    Number of pages18
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2003


    • India
    • housing
    • urban development
    • construction


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