UDRC emerged as one of the few urban NGOs in Odisha through a catalyzing experience related to evictions in Bhubaneswar in 1998, in which it offered assistance to slum dwellers in the form of surveys to ensure proper government allocation of land. It became apparent that there were no long-term policies or mechanisms to address the vulnerabilities faced by slum dwellers in Odisha. Communities faced frequent evictions and natural calamities such as cyclones and floods had already devastated their humble dwellings while the city remained apathetic. These challenges are exacerbated by the fact that Odisha is one of India’s poorest states, with 37.6% of its urban population living below the poverty line, most visibly manifested in slums which account for 1.56 million people.

Therefore, it was necessary for slum dwellers to come together, become organised and negotiate for basic necessities. Learning from the ‘federating’ experience elsewhere in the country, the Urban and Development Resource Centre was created. Since there was no precedent for such an organisation in Odisha, UDRC worked with the SPARC alliance in its formative years, adapting its model of building voice through slum dwellers federations and women’s savings co-operatives (known as Mahila Milan). NSDF and Mahila Milan have been active in Odisha since 1999 and in West Bengal since 2001. UDRC was formally established in 2008 by professionals who have worked with the federations and Mahila Milan (Grass roots networks) since they began to feel the need for a new organizational structure to accommodate their agenda and process.
UDRC currently has a presence in 225 settlements in 2 States and 8 Cities. Odisha: 6 cities (Bhubaneswar, Puri, Cuttack, Paradip, Behrampur, Jajpur), 184 settlements, 9000 members West Bengal: 3 cities (Kolkata, Kona, Kalyani), 20 settlements, 2000 members

Team Monalisa Mohanty, Director

Sujit Patri, Office and Data Management Expert

Sibani Mohanty, Program Coordinator

Bibhu Mangaraj, Project Coordinator

Siba Shankar Dash, City Coordinator-Berhampur

Manoja Manjari Chahatray, City Coordinator-Bhubaneswar

Aswini Tripathy, Documentation Consultant

Sidharth Mohanty, Documentation and System Associate

Brajendra Prusty, Field Coordinator

Basant Kumar Samal, Office Supervisor/Surveyor.


Monalisa Mohanty, Development Professional, Trainer on Gender & Development, UDRC founder and current head

Biranchi Upadhyaya, Development Professional & Regional Director, Southeast Asia-Hivos

Anindita Das, Health and Development Professional.

Invitees from Community federation and Staff

Sujit Patri, UDRC Staff, Data and Office Management expert

Sephali Pradhan, Slum Federation Representative

Mamata Sahu, Community Network Leader


Sundar Burra, IAS (Retd.)

Bashabi Dasgupta, Faculty Department of Architecture at SPA Delhi, Practising Architect on sustainable innovations

Barsha Poricha, Programme Director, National Foundation for India.

NGO/Civil Society Networks Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA)Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centre (SPARC) Odisha Environment Congress Odishaa Swaschh Manch Odisha Development Action Groups Architecture Sans Frontieres (ASF), Sweden


Academic/Internship Linkages Architecture Sans Frontieres (ASF), Sweden Oxford Brookes University, U.K. Kamla Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute of Architecture, Mumbai IIMT (Indian Institute of Mineral Technology), Bhubaneswar Piloo Mody Architecture College, Cuttack Indian Institute of Human Settlements Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) Lovely College of Engineering, Punjab Sustainable Emergency Architecture, International University of Catalynya, Barcelona HUDCO (HSMI)

Government Partnerships Government of Odisha, Housing & UD department Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation Berhampur Municipal Corporation Puri-Konark Development Authority Rourkela Municipal Corporation Cuttack Municipal Corporation Cuttack Collectorate Paradeep Port Trust