Dehradun is renowned for its natural resources, publishing services and particularly for its educational institutions. It is one of the highest rain receiving areas of North India. It hosts training institutions of national importance such as the Indian Military Academy, ITBP Academy & Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy (IGNFA). City population has significant contribution of government servants. It is home to national foundations such as the Ordnance Factory Dehradun, Opto Electronics Factory, Instruments Research and Development Establishment (IRDE), Defence Electronics Application Laboratory (DEAL) and other defence establishments. Other institutions include the Indian Institute of Petroleum, National Institute for Visually Handicapped, Central Soil and Water Conservation Research & Training Institute, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Uttarakhand Space Applications Centre, Survey of India, Wadia Institute Of Himalayan Geology, Forest Survey of India (FSI), Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE), Indian Institute of Remote Sensing, Wildlife Institute of India [FRI] Forest Research Institute and the Rashtriya Indian Military College [ RIMC] .
Dehradun Municipal Corporation is locally known as Nagar Nigam Dehradun. Other urban entities involved in civic services and city governance and management include Mussoorie Dehradun Development Authority (MDDA), Special Area Development Authority (SADA), Jal Sansthan, and Jal Nigam among others.
The latitudinal extent of the region defines its climate. As the city is located between 30-31°N the climate is exclusively classified under Humid Subtropical Climate and is often Continental type. The climate is similar to Haldwani, Panchkula, Jammu or Siliguri. The city is also referred as the 'Rainy City of India' due to continuous and incessant rainfalls specially in monsoon. In fact 16–17 June rainfall was highest ever recorded rainfall of 370 mm rainfall that devastated whole Uttarakhand and nearby regions.
Dehradun is India's wettest State capital this monsoon with 2,865 mm of rainfall between 1 June and 30 September, according to Director of the Dehradun Meteorological Centre Anand Sharma (Spurious claim). Panjim(Goa)-Capital of Goa receives annually 296 cm of rain which is the highest amount of rainfall received by any state capital. With 2,365 mm, Mumbai received the second highest rainfall during this monsoon season.
Dehradun is a part of the Garhwal region, therefore the local customs of the Garhwali people have had a great influence on its culture. Hindi and Garhwali are the primary languages spoken. Other languages spoken in the region are English, Punjabi, Nepali, Tibetan, and Kumaoni. There are people from different religions and backgrounds residing here. After becoming the capital, there has been continuous growth in education, communication and transport. As the state capital, Dehradun is home to many government institutions. Dehradun is renowned all over India for its educational institutions. Buses are identified with blue bars. There are autorickshaws which are often used for transportation but blamed for pollution and noise. The evening buzz of Rajpur road is an attraction. After becoming the capital of Uttarakhand, the growth of the city has accelerated; it is still known as a peaceful city with pleasant weather. The city centre is easily recognised by the Clock Tower (Ghanta Ghar), a structure with six functioning clocks.
The statue of San Dijen placed in Shanti Niketan contributes to the beauty of the city. Dehradun has been home to artists and writers including Stephen Alter, Nayantara Sahgal, Allan Sealy, Ruskin Bond and also to country singer Bobby Cash. Dehradun was home to freedom fighters whose names are engraved in gold on the Clock Tower. It was called "The Gray City" in the initial days because ex-Army officers and VIPs considered this place ideal for residence after retirement. Woolen blankets are typical of this region and worn by people living at high altitude. Women wear saris with full-sleeve blouses along with angora jackets. Girls wear full skirts with scarfs covering their head and shoulders; more recently, they have adopted modern wear like salwar suits.
In villages and to a lesser extent in towns, men wear the traditional dhoti, angarkha and langoti. The way dhotis are worn represents backgrounds and castes: short dhotis represent low status whereas long dhotis represent high. It is more common in urban areas for men to wear shirts and trousers, jeans and kurta-pyjamas. In winter, men usually dress in jackets, hats and overcoats. Hemp is grown in great quantities in this region, so its yarn is frequently used as lining.
The largest profession in Dehradun is agriculture. There are large numbers of people in the military, businesses and education. Staple foods are rice and dal with raita, curd and salad. Dehradun is known for its lychees and for growing the world's finest basmati rice. There are fairs (melas) throughout the year. Notable fairs include Magh Mela, held on 14 January and Jhanda Mela in March, a fair for the Hindu community, that attracts Hindus from all over India and abroad.