Jigar Bhatt is a Ph.D. candidate at Columbia University studying the theory and practice of development planning and governance. His research focuses on expertise and its influence on our social and built environment. He employs a multi-disciplinary approach to answer questions about the relationships between knowledge, rationality, and the modern state. He has a particular interest in contemporary development economics and how its ideas and methods form, circulate, change institutions, and eventually influence the practice of development and people’s lives.
Jigar is also a development professional dedicated to food and water security through sustainable infrastructure development in the Global South. He has a master’s degree from MIT in International Development and Regional Planning and has worked as a Senior Program Officer at the US Millennium Challenge Corporation. Jigar has also consulted for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, World Food Programme, World Bank Water and Sanitation Program, and WaterAid. His experience is rooted in Sub-Saharan Africa but he has also worked and lived in Latin America and South Asia.
Jigar is committed to capacity building so that local communities can address their own challenges. He volunteers with groups working to elevate and amplify progressive heterodox thinking and marginalized ideas so that intellectuals and experts are empowered to address inequality and ecological decline.