QEH WPS 207 April, 2016
As states concentrate their developmental capacities in space, the sub-national scale has emerged as a focal point of policy-making in India. The rescaled spatiality of the state is being inscribed on land. Land is the primary resource available to sub-national states to attract private investment in post-reform contexts. Yet, the promulgation of innovative policies is only the start of the space-state relationship. This paper follows rescaled state policy through to its reception and appropriation by business, community and family networks that operate in the real estate industry, which is a major land user. Dynamic multi-dimensional spatial relations involving scales and networks do not engage with a staid, centralised, formal state. Instead, real estate firms work with a state that is itself networked, and that straddles formality and informality, as well as shadows. India’s land economy is animated in this teeming space of state, scale and networks.