AUD sees itself as a university for and of the city of Delhi. It sees its role as not just being limited to the provision of traditional educational services. Rather, it aspires to become an organic part of the city, working shoulder to shoulder with its citizens and institutions in enriching the life of the city.
The Delhi Citizen’s Memory programme of AUD’s Centre for Community Knowledge collects and makes visible the histories of ordinary people and places that constitute the city of Delhi. It digitises and documents memories and experiences of diverse neighbourhoods, villages and communities of Delhi’s diverse residents. Using conventional oral histories and innovative neighbourhood museums, the project involves city and community residents, besides university faculty, research staff, students and ex-students to collect interviews, archival recordings, photographs, moving images to build a visual and oral story of the city as a home for many millions of people.
The Wetlands Programme of the Centre Centre for Urban Ecology and Sustainability undertakes action research on Delhi’s wetlands with a view to enhance their ecological character and ensure their long-term sustainability. The project aims to ecologically restore the 25.38 hectares of land earmarked for conservation of wetlands at upcoming Dheerpur campus of AUD. Once established, the Wetland Park would provide hydrological, regulatory, cultural, and aesthetic benefits to the local population. The Wetland Resource Centre of the Park would form a hub for nature education and outreach programmes that further the cause of conservation of wetlands and long-term urban sustainability.
The Ehsaas Clinic, a training, teaching and practice site for psychoanalytic psychotheraping extends its services not only to the AUD community, but also to the people around Kashmere Gate, especially to those who cannot afford quality mental health services. Ehsaas provides low-cost and free counselling and psychotherapy to people from socio-economically marginalised groups. Adults, adolescents, children, and families have come to the clinic seeking help and have obtained therapy. Ehsaas also collaborates with Aman Biradari , an orphanage and shelter home in Delhi, and conducts workshops in government schools in Delhi on issues relating to life challenges, emotional development, learning difficulties, and adjustment of children.
Given the recent policy and provisioning context of early childhood care and education in Delhi, Centre for Early Childhood Education and Development has collaborated with the GNCTD to initiate ten early childhood care and education Centres in Delhi for providing preschool education to children from the marginalised backgrounds. These centres will be housed in Basti Vikas Kendras managed by the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board. The focus of these preschools will be to provide developmentally and contextually appropriate play-based learning for 3–6-year-old children.
AUD’s Design Innovation Centre is a three-year project of the School of Design under the Hub and Spoke Scheme of the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India. It has undertaken two projects: ‘Last Mile Connectivity for Urban Commuters Integrating Para Transit Modes’ and ‘Creating Sustain able Social Ecology for Urban Farming’. The former is aimed at integrating cycle rickshaw and e-rickshaw to access public transport in Delhi and the latter involves working with slums in NOIDA Sector 9 to encourage integrated composting and farming and in urban households.
The Centre for English Language Education has been carrying out different outreach activities to contribute to the improvement in English teaching in schools of Delhi. It has conducted workshops for teachers and pilited english proficiency courses in Schools. It has also contributed to building frameworks of materials for English language teaching.