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

Articles By Digital India

The National e-Commerce Policy, 2019

The draft national e-commerce policy 2019 states that the e-commerce platforms use network effects and mining of unstructured data to create entry barriers. We argue that network effects alone do not create sustainable competitive advantage for the platforms. The added effect of the high customer switching costs creates a dominant position for the big firms. It is to be noted that their business models are not built around data. The provision of consumer data or the regulation of foreign participation in this space, does not translate into better business opportunities for micro, small and medium enterprises due to their small-scale operations. Rather, the big domestic retail players might take over and limit the opportunities. 

Broadband Internet Access

With the effects of the pandemic becoming increasingly severe by the day, there has been an almost total shift to online modes of operation. However, this has created a huge digital divide in the country, aggravating the already existing inequalities. To realise the dream of a digitally inclusive India, internet has to be provided as a public good and at subsidised rates for low-income households.

Financial Inclusion and Digital India: A Critical Assessment

Financial inclusion is one of the cornerstones of a developing economy. Launched in 2015, Digital India has been regarded as a significant intervention to bring the unbanked population, who had been kept out of the mainstream economy, into the formal financial net. While there has been an improvement in digital transactions across the country, issues still remain of last-mile connectivity of banks and other financial institutions, dormant accounts, among others.  

 

Is India's Digital Health System Foolproof?

This contribution builds on "Data Infrastructures and Inequities: Why Does Reproductive Health Surveillance in India Need Our Urgent Attention?" and seeks to understand the role that state-run reproductive health portals such as the Mother and Child Tracking System and the Reproductive and Child Health will play going forward. To do so, the article critically outlines the overall digitised health information ecosystem being envisioned by the Indian state. 

Majoritarian Rationale and Common Goals

Looking at existing policy instruments and goals, and the economic and social outcomes they promise to deliver, it is argued that majoritarian politics and social and cultural outcomes are not part of fringe thinking. The politics of hate actually works to build a consensus for ruling class economics. It is not surprising, therefore, that the only "nationalist outlook" of our times is to stand firmly behind the policy programme for the global investor.