Dr Radhika Khosla is the Research Director of the Oxford India Centre for Sustainable Development and Research Fellow at Somerville College; and an Associate Professor at the Smith School of Enterprise and Environment, School of Geography and the Environment, at the University of Oxford. She works on examining the productive tensions between urban transitions, energy services consumption and climate change, with a focus on developing country cities.
Radhika is the Principal Investigator of the Oxford Martin School’s interdisciplinary and multi-country programme on the Future of Cooling. Alongside she leads complementary research projects on urban transitions and space cooling consumption (focussing on India), and on cold-chains. She also leads the climate change research under DFID’s India-UK Global Partnership Programme on Development, which includes co-directing an executive education programme on Leadership in a Climate Emergency for business leaders. She is a contributing author to the sixth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and lead author of the UNEP Emissions Gap Report (2020).
Her other academic affiliations are at University of Pennsylvania, and the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi. Radhika serves on government policy committees, and boards of journals and book presses.
The two sets of interrelated questions underlie her research priorities. First, how does consumption of energy-related services change as cities urbanize? What are the socio-technical drivers, systems and institutional structures that shape (and can reconfigure) energy and carbon emission pathways? Second, what forms of governance and political rationalities characterize the varied urban responses to climate change in rapidly developing cities, given their (often competing) objectives to provide urban services? Her broader interdisciplinary research examines how cities in transition manage the tensions of meeting growing energy needs for development while protecting the local and global environment.
Previously, she has been at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Fellow at the Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi, and Staff Scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council in New York. At the latter, she helped set up the organization’s work on clean energy and climate change in India and led research and implementation on building energy policies in Indian states.
Radhika holds a PhD in the Geophysical Sciences from the University of Chicago and an undergraduate and master’s degrees in Physics from the University of Oxford.