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

Articles by Arvind SubramanianSubscribe to Arvind Subramanian

The Case for Direct Cash Transfers to the Poor

The total expenditure on central schemes for the poor and on the major subsidies exceeds the states' share of central taxes. These schemes are chronic bad performers due to a culture of immunity in public administration and weakened local governments. Arguing that the poor should be trusted to use these resources better than the state, a radical redirection with substantial direct transfers to individuals and complementary decentralisation to local governments is proposed. The benefits, risks and associated reinforcement of institutions and accountability are outlined.

Capital Account Convertibility: A Neglected Consideration

In the debate on capital account convertibility, financial and macroeconomic objectives and constraints have been paramount, with much less discussion on the growth and development dimensions of CAC. This article focuses on one hitherto neglected aspect of first-order importance for long-run growth: the level of the real exchange rate or what might be called the objective of avoiding overvaluation.

Weak States, Weak Markets

Weak Markets Market Institutions, Governance and Development: Collected Essays by Dilip Mookherjee; Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2006;
ARVIND SUBRAMANIAN To be ravaged by globalisation and policy blight has been the nearcommon fate of institutions of higher education in India. But it is particularly painful to witness the decline of the Delhi School of Economics (

2004 Economics Nobel: The Two Insights of Kydland and Prescott

Finn Kydland and Edward Prescott have given economics the notions of time-inconsistency and its normative corollary, pre-commitment, which suggest that governments must adopt credibility-enhancing mechanisms, such as following rules set in advance, to overcome the problem of their own costly discretion. Their work on real business cycle theory has left an important methodological legacy although the theory itself has become something of a fringe movement in academe.

Why India Can Grow at 7 Per Cent a Year or More

Based on a simple growth accounting framework, the authors project India's future potential output growth rate through 2025. They argue that there is perhaps more upside potential than downside risks to their central estimate for annual growth, which is close to 7 per cent, or 5.5 per cent per capita.

Jagdish Bhagwati and India's Trade Strategy Today

Going It Alone: The Case for Relaxed Reciprocity in Freeing Trade by Jagdish Bhagwati; MIT Press, 2002; pp 592 (Hardcover), $ 60.

Compulsory Licensing in Patent Legislation-Superfluous and Misleading

Compulsory Licensing in Patent Legislation Superfluous and Misleading Arvind Subramanian Compulsory licensing for non-working of patents was designed for a situation where the alternative to the local working of an invention was its importation. That is no longer the case. Today a realistic alternative is the efficient local manufacture by indigenous producers of the subject matter of patents through costless or cheap imitation or invention and/or innovation by domestic nationals.

Discrimination in International Economics of Intellectual Property Right Protection

Arvind Subramanian As intellectual property rights legislation moves into the domain of international trade policy, with legal principles having to subserve economic interests, the 'minimal' obligation of non-discrimination, as embodied in the national treatment principle, merits a re-examination, especially for the newly-industrialising developing countries whose actual and potential indigenous R and D capability is not insignificant.

Food Subsidisation and Income Effects

Harsha V Singh Arvind Subramanian This paper depicts some features of income effects arising from food subsidy schemes typically followed in developing countries. The authors show that these income effects


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