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Austin received most of his early education at Norwich, Vermont, USA. Austin graduated from Dartmouth College with a BA in American Literature. He then earned a doctorate in Modern Indian History from Oxford University.
He worked as a journalist/photographer and later served with the U. S. Information Service, Department of State, Department of Health, Education and Welfare, and on the staff of a U. S. senator. He has held fellowships or grants from St. Antony's College, Oxford, the Ford Foundation, the Fulbright Program, the American Institute of Indian Studies, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, and the Institute of Current World Affairs.
Austin is the author of two seminal political histories of the constitution of India, The Indian Constitution: Cornerstone of a Nation and Working a Democratic Constitution: The Indian Experience.
In 2011, in recognition for his writing on the framing and working of the Indian Constitution, Granville Austin was awarded a Padma Shri award, the fourth highest civilian honor of the Republic of India. National Translation Mission of the Ministry of Human Resource Development of the Government of India has selected The Indian Constitution: Cornerstone of a Nation for translation into Indian languages. The book has already been published in Telugu and Marathi languages.
- The Indian Constitution: Cornerstone of a Nation
- Working a Democratic Constitution: The Indian Experience
- Retrieving Times (White River Press, 2008)
- "Working a Democratic Constitution : The Indian Experience". Vedam Books. Retrieved January 27, 2009.
- "Working a Democratic Constitution : The Indian Experience". Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2008-01-27.
- "Granville Austin - About the Author". granvilleaustin.com. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
- "Granville Austin, RIP". Law and other things. Vikram Raghavan. 7 July 2014.
- "Padma Sri Awardees". NIC - Govt. of India. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
- "Padma Awards Announced" (Press release). Ministry of Home Affairs. 25 January 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2011.