Projects and Research
Sangita has led a range of mixed methods research, innovative, and pedagogical projects.
Sangita is the Director of Research on the Civic Imagination Project (CIP) at the University of Southern California. Based at the University of Southern California, the CIP taps the civic imagination (our collective vision for what a better tomorrow might look like) to help diverse communities harness creativity for real world change. She is currently working on two forthcoming books related to this project to be published by NYU Press and Peter Lang.
Digital Civics Toolkit
The Digital Civics Toolkit is a collection of resources for educators to support youth to explore, recognize, and take seriously the civic potentials of digital life. The Toolkit draws on the research and work of the MacArthur Research Network on Youth and Participatory Politics (YPP). The Toolkit explores a range of civic opportunities and dilemmas via 5 modules focused on: Exploring Community Issues, Investigation, Dialogue, Voice, and Action.
Media, Activism and Participatory Politics (MAPP)
Sangita is the Director of the Henry Jenkins' Media, Activism and Participatory Politics (MAPP) Project, which is based at at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Over the past four years, MAPP conducted five case studies of diverse youth-driven communities which translate mechanisms of participatory culture into civic engagement and political participation.
Growing out of her commitment to performance and participatory approaches to learning, Sangita has collaboratively developed and taught several workshops. Most recently, her work with Gabriel Peters-Lazaro culminated in the development of the "Think Critically, Act Creatively" workshop. Inspired by the work of Alex McDowell and the 5D Institute the workshop harnesses the power of future world building and the imagination towards envisioning social change.
Bollynatyam - Dance Reflections
Founded by Sangita, Bollynatyam is the place where film and dance meet, play, and come to life. Through Bollynatyam, Sangita creates, directs, and produces dance films, documentaries, and other performance art. Established as an expert on film dances, particularly those from South Asia, Sangita also comments on dance through the Bollynatyam blog.
Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change
Sangita is a faculty member of the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change (in Austria), which builds digital literacies and engagement around critical challenges for society through intensive training, academic inquiry and practice based experimentation. Founded in 2007, it has over 1000 alumni and faculty from 60 participating institutions worldwide.
By Any Media Necessary - Book and Resource
Sangita is a co-author of By Any Media Necessary (forthcoming NYU Press) and coordinates the collectively created BAM online resource. Both projects offer insights into contemporary American youth and participatory politics as they examine young people who are tapping into the potentials of new forms of communication such as social media platforms, remixing the language of popular culture, and seeking to bring about political change.
Research on Youth, New Media and Civic Engagement
Through her work with Henry Jenkins at USC, Sangita oversaw (and and continues to oversee) several research projects which have cumulatively included interviews with 200 youth, in depth ethnographies of 5 organizations, participant observation of online interaction and in-depth close analysis of youth produced media. The findings of this research have led to multiple publications. Sangita personally carried out the case studies on American Muslim networks and Invisible Children.
A powerful and catastrophic earthquake shook Nepal on April 25th, 2015. As Nepal’s people struggle to live through the persistent aftershocks and dig loved ones out of the debris, domestic and international rescue efforts get underway.
In the midst of this tragedy, Sangita and her colleagues launched Color-In Nepal - a fundraising Nepal-themed coloring book project - to make a meaningful and genuine contribution to Nepal’s recovery.
Bollywood Dance Research and Book
Sangita is the author of the first comprehensive book on Bollywood dance culture, Is It All About Hips?, which traces Bollywood dances as they are interpreted, created, and produced in three locations: Mumbai (India), Kathmandu (Nepal), and Los Angeles (USA).
Sangita is currently focusing on the Bollywood/Film Dance competition scene in the United States.
Prague Indian Film Festival
Sangita is one of the co-founders of the Prague Indian Film Festival and served as its Programming Director until 2012. Founded in 2002, the Prague Indian Film Festival is still the largest South Asian event in the Czech Republic.