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The “Discouraged Worker Effect” in Public Works Programs: Evidence from the MGNREGA in India

  • Sudha Narayanan, Upasak Das, Yanyan Liu, Christopher B. Barrett
  • World Development, Volume 100, December 2017
  • This study investigates the consequences of poor implementation in public workfare programs, focusing on the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) in India. Using nationally representative data, we test empirically for a discouraged worker effect arising from either of two mechanisms: administrative rationing of jobs among those who seek work and delays in wage payments. We find strong evidence at the household and district levels that administrative rationing discourages subsequent demand for work. Delayed wage payments seem to matter significantly during rainfall shocks. We find further that rationing is strongly associated with indicators of implementation ability such as staff capacity. Politics appears to play only a limited role. The findings suggest that assessments of the relevance of public programs over their lifecycle need to factor in implementation quality.
  • URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/0305750X/100?sdc=2
    Courtesy: Sciencedirect

Making it easier to apply for a bank account: a study of the Indian market

Demirguc-Kunt,Asli; Klapper,Leora; Ansar,Saniya; Jagati,Aditya

Policy Research Working Paper, WPS8205, 2017

This paper draws on new individual-level survey data from India to study the costs of opening an account and the efficiency of the account application process. The data show a recent increase in account ownership, especially by women and poor adults. The data also suggest that India’s flagship financial inclusion program, the Jan Dhan Yojana scheme, has made it easier to get an account, through lower costs and greater ease of applying. Yet despite the scheme’s initial successes, people who wish to apply for an account continue to incur a range of costs. The survey results suggest several recommendations that could improve the account application process and increase ownership and usage of accounts.

URL: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/docsearch/document-type/620265

Courtesy: World Bank

Measuring the effectiveness of service delivery : delivery of government provided goods and services in India

Demirguc-Kunt,Asli; Klapper,Leora; Prasad,Neeraj

Policy Research Working Paper, WPS8207

This paper uses new survey data to measure the government’s capacity to deliver goods and services in a manner that includes: high coverage of the population; equal access; and high quality of service delivery. The paper finds variation in these indicators across and within Indian states. Overall: (i) access to government provided goods and services is low — about 60 percent of the surveyed population are unable to apply for goods and services they self-report needing; (ii) inequality in access is high — women and poor adults are more likely to report an inability to apply for goods and services they need; and (iii) less than a third of the respondents who did manage to apply for a government delivered good or service found the application process to be easy. Access can be improved by reducing application costs and processing times, simplifying the application process, and providing alternative channels to receive applications.

URL: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/docsearch/document-type/620265

Courtesy: World Bank

Ethnic fragmentation and school provision in India

Nishant Chadha and Bharti Nandwani

WIDER Working Paper, 2017

Abstract :

In this paper, we study the impact of ethnic fragmentation on the provision of private and public schools, separately. The distinction is made because the two types of schools have different objective functions, a factor which can influence the relationship between ethnic fragmentation and public goods provision.

We find that ethnic fragmentation has a negative impact on the provision of schools overall, but this effect manifests differently for the two types of schools considered. To explain our findings we show that ethnic fragmentation lowers collective action, and because of the different objectives of provision of private and public schools, lack of collective action results in a differential impact. While private schools are shown to be lower in number, public schools are of lower quality in fragmented districts.

URL : https://www.wider.unu.edu/publication/ethnic-fragmentation-and-school-provision-india

Courtesy : UNU-WIDER

Human resource management and co-ordination for innovation activities – cases from India’s automotive industry

Sunil Mani
Asian Journal of Technology Innovation, 2017

ABSTRACT: The study undertakes the following three analytical issues in the process of technological capability building in firms in an industrialising country. First, it identifies the major innovative activity or learning events in the longitudinal history of a form in a technologically intensive industry. Second, it identifies the human resource requirement, which is required for achieving those learning events or innovations. Third, it maps out the internal and external human resource development strategies employed by the firms. The three issues are analysed in the context of three leading domestic firms in India’s automotive industry. The ensuing analysis shows some remarkable parallels in the internal and external strategies adopted by the three firms. The most dominant internal strategy is in-house training of scientists and engineers to do in-house R&D and the most dominant external strategy is the acquisition of technologically intensive foreign firms which possess a key technology which the original firm lacks and then effecting knowledge flows from the acquired foreign firm to the original domestic firm.

url – http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/19761597.2017.1385963
courtesy – T&F

Gender Differences in Adolescent Nutrition: Evidence from two Indian districts

Amit Mitra, Nitya Rao
Leaveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia (MSSRF) WP No. 13/2017

Using quantitative data from a one-time survey followed by ethnographic research in two sites in India (Koraput district in Odisha and Wardha district in Maharashtra), this paper seeks to examine the conundrum of gender differentials in adolescent nutrition. While large-scale datasets, as from the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN), suggest that adolescent boys are slightly more undernourished than girls, micro-studies often contradict this finding. In this paper, we explore the possible explanatory factors for this divergence, located in household histories in specific agro-ecological settings. Our analysis reveals that behind every malnourished child, there is (in general) a history of undernourishment, including an impoverished household. The disadvantage is multiplied by the presence of a malnourished mother (sometimes a malnourished father), medical neglect, water scarcity and often a son preference that leads to the birth of several daughters before a son is born. While acknowledging the importance of child malnutrition as a focus of development policy, the paper concludes with a need to pay attention to adolescents, both boys and girls, in order to ensure well-being in adult life.

url –
courtesy – MSSRF

Status of Microfinance in India 2016-17

NABARD, 2017

Status of Microfinance in India the referential document in the sector for more than a decade is the prestigious annual publication of NABARD being brought in after meticulous compilation of data from all the practitioners and players in the financial sector. It has become a trusted repository of data on the Microfinance sector and quoted quite often by policy makers and practitioners alike.

Read more here …
courtesy – NABARD