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

Economic growthSubscribe to Economic growth

An Imbalanced Ecosystem

The rapid development of various institutions supporting company creation in India has the potential to generate economic growth, innovation, and economic development. However, this article shows that the start-up ecosystem has unevenly developed across cities and economic sectors, and has failed to empower the overall population, so far. Using a comprehensive database on start-ups retrieved from Tracxn, a business data and analytics company, the authors find that venture capital concentrates amongst graduates stemming from a handful of prestigious education institutes in India and abroad. The article analyses the role of entrepreneurship policies and argues for a shift of focus and resources towards the building of a more inclusive start-up ecosystem.

From Jobless to Job-loss Growth

The unprecedented decline in the absolute number of workers in the Indian economy in recent times has been a subject of debate and a matter of public concern. A closer look at the data for the period 2011–12 and 2017–18 shows that it is the net result of a dynamic process of job creation and destruction. Those who have lost jobs are all with low education, that is, less than secondary level of education. From a gender perspective, rural women workers are the net losers. From a social point of view, the net losers belong to two groups: Muslims and Hindu Other Backward Classes. These are clear signs of rural India in distress with strong gender and social dimensions.

Means to Augment Human Well-being

Post-growth Thinking in India: Towards Sustainable Egalitarian Alternatives edited by Julien-François Gerber and Rajeswari S Raina , Hyderabad: Orient BlackSwan, 2018; pp xxii + 365, ₹ 1,075 .

Indian Car Industry

Global Players and the Indian Car Industry: Trade, Technology and Structural Change by Jatinder Singh, Oxon and New York: Routledge, 2019; pp xvii + 240, ₹ 995.

Virtuous Cycle and Economic Growth in India

A critique is offered after examining the claims in the Economic Survey that the concept of virtuous cycle is of recent origin and that during the planning period, the planners were unaware of such a way of imagining economic progress. The evidences provided to support the presence of the virtuous cycle in China and the East Asian countries are also questioned.

Critical Essays in Economics

Economic Growth, Efficiency and Inequality edited by Satish Jain and Anjan Mukherji, Routledge, pp xx+206, ₹ 795.

Deciphering Growth and Development

Uttar Pradesh’s growth and development is increasingly becoming part of the political discourse as the 2017 state elections approach. The Akhilesh Yadav government has showcased its strategies and achievements through public advertisements. Given that all major parties in the fray have been in power in the state at some time or another, this article examines UP’s record of growth and development over the long run, and over specific sub-periods linked to various political regimes. It specifically examines how growth strategies, focused on industrial and infrastructure growth, have evolved since the early 1990s, poor governance has influenced the general development scenario as well as the impact of “social justice” oriented governments on socially inclusive development.

IMF's Autocritique of Neo-liberalism?

In a recent article published in Finance and Development, an International Monetary Fund magazine, three economists have critically evaluated the policies the IMF promotes. They acknowledge evidence that suggests that economic growth under neo-liberalism is difficult to sustain, that it leads to an increase in inequality, and that continuing inequality is harmful for sustainable (or continuing) growth.

Nutritional Well-Being and Gender Differences

How much difference does economic growth make to the nutritional well-being of young children? What effect does it have on traditional child care practices, and specifically on the tendency to favour male children? A follow-up 30 years after a classic study carried out in 1971 in Punjab villages indicates changes that are dramatic, but also that rapid economic growth, while necessary, may not have been sufficient.

Crying Wolf on Poverty

One of the most important development goals is the reduction in absolute poverty to 15 per cent by 2015. This and related development goals have been agreed upon by governments and the UN system, and have been labelled the Millennium Development Goals. In my recently published book, Imagine There's No Country: Poverty, Inequality and Growth in the Era of Globalisation, I had documented how the poverty reduction goal had already been reached by 2000, the very year of formulation of the goals for 2015. In a critique of my study, World Bank as well as its main poverty analyst, Martin Ravallion, question the authenticity of the data, assumptions and methods used by Imagine. In fact, data and definitions account for an insignificant amount of the difference in the poverty estimates of World Bank and Imagine. The major explanation for the higher World Bank poverty rates is found to be due to a lower growth estimate of per capita expenditures, and especially lower compared to the growth estimate obtained from national accounts data. This lower growth, 10.4 per cent over 11 years, 1987-1998, is based on household survey means (World Bank data). An associated, and surprising, finding is that while poverty estimates are accurately reproduced, there is a big divergence between the published growth rate of 10.4 per cent and the 'reproduced' survey growth of 5.6 per cent. Notwithstanding this major uncertainty about the World Bank data or its growth and poverty results, all the major findings of Imagine are faithfully reproduced exclusively using only World Bank data. Further, an extension of the World Bank poverty measurement method also yields the result that the MDG poverty reduction goal has been reached. Finally, using the recently released 1996 PPP data, poverty in 2000 was below 15 per cent for all methods, including the flawed World Bank poverty measurement method.

Industrial Revival: Selective and Cyclical

All available signs of industrial revival are selective and cyclical. There is no indication of an improvement in the overall investment climate.

Guaranteeing Title to Land

Land is the most valuable natural resource whose planning and development offer major prospects for increases in output and incomes for the people, especially for those who are near or below the poverty line. For efficient land planning and optimum use, it is essential that there be clarity and certainty about title to land. In India land records are in very poor shape and there is maximum litigation in rural and urban areas about ownership. It has been estimated by reputed agencies that India loses 1.3 per cent economic growth annually as a result of disputed land titles, which inhibit supply of capital and credit for agriculture. It is therefore exceedingly important that a fundamental change is brought about in the way land records are maintained. The conversion of the present system of presumptive titles to land into conclusive titles is the only sensible solution of this problem. Bold political direction alone can bring about reform of this magnitude which will bring our country in the mainstream of a worldwide trend, enhance the marketability of land, reduce the stupendous social cost of litigation and give a boost to agricultural production and urban and industrial development.

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