ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Rohini SomanathanSubscribe to RSS - Rohini Somanathan

Creating Long Panels Using Census Data (1961–2001)

Official data in India are mostly published at the state or district level. Multi-year analyses of these data are made difficult by the many changes in state and district boundaries that have occurred since the first comprehensive census of independent India in 1961. Between 1961 and 2001, the number of states and union territories in India increased from 26 to 35, and the number of districts increased from 339 to 593. There were several changes in both names and boundaries. We document these changes and use them to construct regions of amalgamated districts with constant boundaries.

Suresh Tendulkar and His Delhi School Family

who are now in academia and the government tell me that they benefited a lot from his lectures at D-school. He used to tell me,

Mapping Indian Districts across Census Years, 1971-2001

In India, for many empirical questions, states have been the standard unit of analysis and they are a natural starting point for research using official data sources because state governments set political agendas and budgets and administer a wide range of services. The use of more disaggregated district data allows the study of outcomes across regions with similar historical contexts and political regimes. Most districtlevel studies, however, have relied on cross-sectional analysis because district comparisons over time are complicated by multiple boundary changes. As providing information on boundary changes across districts will facilitate the construction of district-level panel data sets, this article provides data on the composition of all Indian districts over the 1971-2001 period that can enable the construction of district panels.

Climate Change: Challenges Facing India's Poor

Briefly summarising the existing literature on the causes and the characteristics of expected climate changes in India over the coming years, this paper discusses the ways in which these changes might affect the lives of the poor. Rising temperatures, changes in rainfall patterns, and an increased frequency of floods and droughts are likely to have serious effects on rural populations in the absence of policies that actively help these households adjust to their changing geography. Survey data from villages affected by the Kosi flood of 2008 is used to speculate on how households and governments are likely to respond to unexpected weather events. The flood in Bihar rendered much of the land in the area uncultivable and resulted in large-scale unemployment. The state, while effective in providing immediate relief to flood victims, has done little to help the rural population adapt to their changed geography.

Assumptions and Arithmetic of Caste-Based Reservations

There is reason to be cautious in the use of affirmative action policies to achieve equality in access to higher education. There appears to be considerable heterogeneity within the broad social groupings that are currently used and differences in the extent to which groups that were traditionally disadvantaged have managed to extract benefits from the state. Affirmative action policies that target broad social groups are not going to act as powerful tools of social justice - too many of the disadvantaged will be excluded in favour of the more privileged.

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