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

HandloomSubscribe to Handloom

Digital Empowerment and Indian Handlooms

Mere access to the internet does not guarantee progress; end users must be equipped to draw tangible benefits. This study explores the digital access and education initiatives in the handloom clusters of India and attempts to arrive at policy interventions for the sustainable digital empowerment of workers in indigenous trades such as handlooms. In-depth case research was conducted in three project sites, at various stages of maturity, of the Digital Cluster Development Programme by the Digital Empowerment Foundation in India. The physical infrastructure of digital connectivity needs to be accompanied by vocation-specific digital interventions for connectivity to be used productively and for digital empowerment to take place. A three-pronged social policy intervention model based on access, education, and engagement involving public–private partnerships, which may substantially enhance digitalisation of indigenous business models and digital empowerment of communities engaged in such professions, is recommended.

The Weavers of Banaras

A switch from the handloom to the powerloom has altered the livelihood, ethos, and lifestyle of the weavers of the Banaras silk industry. This article is an attempt to understand how these artisans have coped with the transformation wrought by technology, how they perceive changes occurring in Banaras’s composite culture, and their reactions to the current political dispensation led by Narendra Modi.
Back to Top