Currently, he is a Fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) Shimla. After completing his PhD from the Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, he has been teaching at G. B. Pant Social Science Institute, University of Allahabad. He specialises in the sociology and anthropology of caste, class, development, political cultures, agrarian change, youth and future. His research investigates how marginalized groups understand and engage with democratic politics and the state in contemporary India. He has conducted long-term ethnographic fieldwork on these issues in eastern and western Uttar Pradesh. Recently, he has been writing biographies of criminal-entrepreneurs and young student leaders. He has written widely on rural-agrarian transformation in north India.
Beyond his ethnographic research, Satendra is also interested in combining social theory with history, literature and political-legal philosophy. He taught at the Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi. He has been awarded the British Academy Fellowship at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences, UK. He has also been a Visiting Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University, the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), Delhi, University of California, Berkeley, Bielefeld University, Germany, Australia-India Institute, Melbourne and Savitribai Phule Pune University. During his fellowship at the IIAS, he will be writing a monograph on Popular Democracy and Other Backward Classes in North India. He has presented many papers in national and international conferences and has lectured extensively in the country and abroad.