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

Swapna MukhopadhyaySubscribe to Swapna Mukhopadhyay

Impact of Institutional Change on Productivity in a Small-Farm Economy-Case of Rural West Bengal

a Small-Farm Economy Case of Rural West Bengal Badal Mukberji Swapna Mukhopadhyay 'West Bengal is the only state in India which has for the last neatly two decades been operating a system of democratically elected local self-government. If is also the one state which has successfully (anted out certain land reform measures. This paper attempts to estimate the impact of these institutional changes on total factor productivity in the production of rice in the state Introduction ONE of the major factors behind the persistence of rural poverty in developing countriesean be i raced to the low productivity of labour on small and marginal farms on aeeoum of a variety of reasons Lack ot access to complemcniai\ inputs, insecurity of tenancy and dependence on the rural rich in a situation of asymmetric power relations and interlinked factor markets, all militate against achieving a high level of productivity on small and marginal farms. Yet as the size- productivity debate in Indian agriculture has clearly established, productivity on small farms may fact be higher if one could net out the impact of factors of production other than labour.1 In other words, low land productivity on small farms is more a reflection of constraints other than just farm size. The state of West Bengal in India provider an interesting case study of what a small-farm rural economy can possibly achieve if some of these constraints could be even partially lifted This has happened through the institution of the Panchayati Raj

Female Labour Absorption in Construction Sector

Construction Sector Arup Mitra Swapna Mukhopadhyay This study looks into the pattern of labour absorption in the Class I cities of India (i e, cities with a population of one lakh and above) in 1981 and relates it to the situation prevailing in 1971. It identifies cities with high or rising rates of labour absorption in the construction sector and differentiates them from cities with low or falling rates of such absorption. It then relates these differences to differences in city characteristics in terms of changes in the composition of workforce, population growth and so on. One major focus of the study is to analyse the gender differences in the pattern of labour use in the construction sector of urban India. An attempt is made to decompose the percentage changes in gender-specific labour use in construction into various component factors contributing to variations in such absorption across cities. The authors have tried to identify the relative importance of the extent of male-female substitution within the construction sector as such, as well as substitution between the construction sector as a whole and other sectors in terms of employment generation. Also analysed are the effects of changes in workforce participation rates, increases in the total workforce or in the population base of the cities which were categorised in the size Class I category in 1981 THE paper is organised as follows: The following section looks into certain broad features of the cities in our sample and the level of and changes in labour absorption in construction activities in these cities. Section III reports the results of some factor analytic exercises carried out with a view to identifying the principal sources of variation in-sectoral patterns of labour absorption for female as well as male workers. Apart from analysing changes in the construction sector as such, this section also reports a number of interesting results in changes in gender- specific overall occupational structure in the major cities of India in the inter-censal decade Section IV is concerned with decomposing changes in the number of construction workers into various factors and analysing their relative importance in our sample of cities.

Rural Non-Farm Sector in Asia-A Characterisation

A Characterisation Swapna Mukhopadhyay There have been some attempts to collate the quantitative information on the size and structure of the rural non- farm sector. However, there have been few systematic attempts to characterise or analyse its role in the developmental process. In fact, a lot of the conflicting evidence and controversies that are found in the literature retarding the rural non-farm sector arises precisely because of the lack of a clear definition and of an analytical framework characterising its nature and place in the economic system.
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