ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Does a Man’s Hardship Matter More Than a Woman’s?

COVID-19 led to increased economic distress, which is usually associated with an increased justification of domestic violence. Through causal methods of survey experiments, the reasons for justification of domestic violence are evaluated. The hypotheses are tested using a survey experiment set in Ahmedabad, Gujarat with 500 participants (men and women) around the time of the first wave of the pandemic. The results show that hardships from the COVID-19-related lockdown were associated with increased support for domestic violence across genders. We also find that women justified domestic violence more than men.

Impact of Lockdown Relief Measures on Informal Enterprises and Workers

Much has been said and written about the impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on the Indian economy, the stimulus packages announced by the Government of India and the sad plight of the migrant workers. This article brings into focus segments of the economy that constitute the bottom of the labour hierarchy, namely microenterprises, construction workers, street vendors and domestic workers. Will the relief measure help refigure their livelihoods after the lockdown is lifted?

Do Not Dilute NREGA

[An Open Letter to the Prime Minister on NREGA by economists based in India and elsewhere in the world.]

We are writing to express our deep concern about the future of India’s National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA).

Rural Structural Transformation: The Case of the Services Sector in India

This paper examines whether any of India's high-productivity, high-income growth in the services sector is occurring in rural India, and if so, to what extent. It addresses three questions: (a) While India has experienced high economic growth led by the services sector over the last decade, to what extent has rural structural transformation taken place? (b) How has the Indian services sector performed in the context of the General Agreement on Trade in Services and how is this reflected in rural India? (c) To what extent has the rural workforce gained from the it revolution?

Gender Differentials in Education: Exploring the Capabilities Approach

Motivation and freedom of choice are mediated through the institutions of caste and religion, which restrict freedom, particularly of women. This paper discusses whether the capabilities approach provides any advantage in addressing questions of inequality that may be also mediated through such institutions. With the help of empirical data, the capabilities approach is used to identify "conversion factors" that are not typically addressed in the utility approach. A comparison is made between knowledge generated through the use of traditional data sources to measure access and returns to education with the knowledge about the dynamics of capabilities formation generated through the use of a mixture of data within the capabilities approach. This has the potential to help public policy decisions to improve education design and outcomes for girls from disadvantaged sections.

Homeworkers in Value Chains

Asian Informal Workers: Global Risks, Local Protection by Santosh Mehrotra and Mario Biggeri; Routledge, London, 2007; pp xxxii + 475, price not stated.

Growth of Employment (1993-94 to 2004-05): Illusion of Inclusiveness?

Viewed over the long-term, employment growth slowed slightly in 1993-2004, compared to 1983-1993; the slowdown is quite marked in rural India. Employment has grown in urban areas over the past decade, but the nature of this growth and the quality of employment generated need probing. There has been a substantial increase in self-employment, much of which is poorly remunerated and for the first time in decades, there has been a decline in the real wage rates of regular salaried workers and urban casual workers.

Are the Results of the Economic Census Robust?

While the buoyancy in the growth of employment in the economy since the year 2000 cannot be dismissed, this cannot be surmised from the results of the Economic Census 2005.

Decent Work Deficits in Informal Economy

This paper illustrates the challenges involved in achieving "decent work", as conceptualised by the International Labour Organisation, in the urban informal economy through measuring decent work deficits among male and female workers in Surat. It assesses and contributes to existing attempts to measure decent work and then examines the prevalence of deficits and inadequate earnings in Surat, disaggregating the analysis by structural insecurities shaping informal work opportunities in India, specifically gender and activity status. The results provide guidance regarding what types of policies are most needed, and for which groups, in order to achieve "decent work for all" in urban India.

Unorganised and Organised Manufacturing in India

This paper analyses the impact of economic reforms on the organised and unorganised manufacturing sectors. It also seeks an explanation for the growth trends observed by looking at specific trade and industrial policies. The analysis indicates that economic reform policies had a differential impact on various industry groups. In particular, the growth in the automobile industry and the infrastructure sector helped the growth of the manufacturing industry, especially in the unorganised segment and the generation of quality employment.

Economic Reforms and Productivity Trends in Indian Manufacturing

This paper analyses the trends in growth and efficiency in the utilisation of resources in the Indian manufacturing industry before and after the introduction of economic reforms. It uses a comparative analysis of all-India figures with Gujarat, one of the most industrially developed states of the country. The study shows that both the organised and unorganised sectors in Gujarat seemed to be doing better than the all-India average in terms of growth of value added. Growth in the manufacturing sector in Gujarat was also more efficient than average all-India growth after the reforms were introduced. Gujarat's strategy of physical infrastructure development, leading to industrialisation, has been the main reason for the growth of the state's manufacturing sector.


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