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Uttaran Dutta

Uttaran Dutta

Assistant Professor, Hugh Downs School of Human Communication, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Hugh Downs School of Human Communication
Arizona State University
PO Box 871205
Tempe, AZ 85287-1205


  • Senior Sustainability Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
  • Assistant Professor, Hugh Downs School of Human Communication, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • Affiliate Faculty, Global Technology and Development, School of Letters and Sciences
  • Affiliate Faculty, Center for Asian Research
  • Affiliate Faculty, Global Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Uttaran Dutta studies creative ways to address development, health and social disparity issues. His research focuses on sustainable development and social change in marginalized communities, analyzing the importance of culture, communication, design and innovation in transforming the lives of people who are socially, politically and economically poor. In all his work, local participants are the key forces in identifying and developing cost-effective solutions using local resources.

In one project, Dr. Dutta is developing a computer application for illiterate people in rural India to access useful information regarding local weather, employment, education, and other basic services such as healthcare. In another project, he collaborated with local people to construct a mini-hospital, library-cum-museum and a protection-wall to save sacred environmental resources in remote indigenous villages in eastern India.

Additionally, he researches the folk-culture and indigenous knowledge of the underserved to document and understand alternate ways of viewing the world.


  • PhD, Communication Studies, Purdue University, 2013
  • MDes, Visual Communication Design, IIT Bombay, India, 2006
  • MBA, Business Administration, India, 2003
  • BE, Civil Engineering, India, 2001


Journal Articles

In Press

Shuter, R., U. Dutta, P. Cheong, Y. Chen and J. Shuter. Digital behavior of university students in India and the U.S.: Cultural values and communication technologies In the classroom. Western Journal of Communication


Dutta, M., S. Sastry, S. Dillard, R. Kumar, A. Anaele, W. Collins, C. Roberson, U. Dutta, C. Jones, T. Gillespie and C. Spinetta. 2016. Narratives of stress in health meanings of African Americans in Lake County, Indiana. Health Communication DOI: 10.1080/10410236.2016.1204583. (link )

Dutta, U. 2016. Adivasi media in India: Relevance and contribution in legitimizing marginalized voices. Intercultural Communications Studies XXV(3):213-231. (link )

Dutta, U. 2016. Designing for the underserved: My reflections. Design for All: Place-People-Purpose-Relevance 11(12):13-20. (link )


Dutta, U. 2015. Questioning dominant development practices. The Journal of International Communication 21(2):169-188. DOI: 10.1080/13216597.2015.1052534. (link )

Dutta, U. and S. Das. 2015. The digital divide at the margins: Co-designing information solutions to address the needs of indigenous populations of rural India. Communication Design Quarterly Review 4(1):36-48. DOI: 10.1145/2875501.2875504. (link )


Dutta, M. J. and U. Dutta. 2013. Voices of the poor from the margins of Bengal: Structural inequities and health. Qualitative Health Research 23(1):14-25. DOI: 10.1177/1049732312462241. (link )

Book Chapters

In Press

Dutta, U. Development. The SAGE Encyclopedia of Music and Culture.

Dutta, U. Indigenous rights. The SAGE Encyclopedia of Music and Culture.

Dutta, U. Intercultural communication studies in India. International Encyclopedia of Intercultural Communication.

Dutta, U. and J. N. Martin. Theoretical perspectives in intercultural communication. In: Chen, L. ed., Intercultural Communication. Vol 9. De Gruyter. ISBN: 978-1-5015-0007-7.

Sen, S. and U. Dutta. Crisis communication during the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India in 2008. In: George, A. M. and K. Kwansah-Aidoo eds., Culture and Crisis Communication: Transboundary Cases from Nonwestern Perspectives. Wiley-IEEE Press. ISBN: 978-1-119-00975-7.


Dutta, U. 2015. Change-agentry. Pp. 45-46 In: Bennett, J. ed., The SAGE Encyclopedia of Intercultural Competence. SAGE Publications. Thousand Oaks, CA. DOI: 10.4135/9781483346267.n26.

Dutta, U. 2015. Design problems. In: Edwards, C. ed., The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design.

Dutta, U. 2015. Social relations. In: Edwards, C. ed., The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design.


Dutta, M. J., S. Dillard, R. Kumar, S. Sastry, C. Jones, A. Anaele, U. Dutta, W. Collins, T. Okoror and C. Roberson. 2013. Relational tensions in academic-community partnerships in the culture-centered approach (CCA): Negotiating communication in creating spaces for voices. Pp. 457-478 Reducing Health Disparities: Communication Interventions. Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.. ISBN: 978-1433119057.