eSocialSciences Newsletter

June-July 2007

Selection of Recent Posts and Forthcoming Events

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Social Science Research and Education

Higher Education in Public Institutions: How Do We Stem the Slow Rot? P.S.  Neelam argues that the deterioration in the quality of higher education is largely due to the fact that those who are at the helm of institutions have little interest in the field. (eSS Discussion Paper)


Forthcoming Discussion Papers/Symposia

Social Science Research Methods and Knowledge-Claims.  Paramjit S. Judge raises issues central to the current discourse of social science practice in which serious doubts are being raised about the ability of sociological research to come up with the generalisations and make knowledge-claims.

Sustainability of Indian Agriculture. V.M.Rao presents a systemic framework to look at the prospects for sustainability of Indian agriculture and presents three possible scenarios on prospects for agriculture initiating a debate.         


India and Asia

APEC 2007: How Strong is India’s Case for Membership? Mukul Asher and Rahul Sen. The forthcoming annual summit of APEC to be hosted by Australia will witness the ending of the decade long moratorium on membership. India presents a strong case to be included.  [eSS Commentary]


Mumbai, a Shanghai?

Building an International Financial Centre in Mumbai. Sanjeev Sanyal asks: Why do we need large financial hubs in a globalised, post-internet world? Since financial hubs are also major cities, why do cities even exist in the 21st st century?



NEW!  Blogs on the two-day Franco-Indian Institute’s Conference on ‘Technology, Innovation and MDGs’, July 12-13, 2007.

Selected and revised conference papers will be published as an eSS Occasional Papers volume in October. Keep track of Bulletin Board announcements.


Gender and Language

Man and Woman Talk: Grammatical and Syntactical Similarities and Disparities. Asha Kaul and Nandan Debmalya, borrowing from the existing literature on grammar and syntax used by men and women, transcripts of 107 employees in an Indian organization were analyzed.


New Bi-monthly Feature

Newsletter on Regional Economy: A bi-monthly four-state update from IRIS.


For Public Discussion

The Working Draft for Revised Medical Curriculum is now available for public comment and discussion. The entire curriculum and underlying philosophy is available on eSS and other related documents.[]

An e-symposium is being put together. Do participate.



Continuing Debates

Reproductive Health: Case Laws by Vijay Hiremat and Kamayani Bali Mahabal. This chapter of a Reader on Health Care Case Laws in India documents case laws related to reproductive health issues, including on sex selection and abortion. [For information on the Reader,]


Rent a Womb: Surrogate Selection, Investment Incentives and Contracting Swapnendu Banerjee and Sanjay Basu develop a model of gestational surrogacy, in which a childless couple faces heterogeneous prospective surrogates to examine risk to unborn child. [GIPE WP]


Financial Systems and Capital Markets

Reflections on Global Account Imbalances and Emerging Markets Reserve Accumulation.  Lawrence H.  Summers focuses on the implications of the large flow of capital from the world’s most successful emerging markets to the traditional industrial countries, and the associated build-up of reserves in the developing world. [L.K.Jha Memorial Lecture/RBI]


Impact of U.S. Federal Interest Rate and Movement of MSCI on Indian Capital Markets by Bharat Chadha examines: Is the Indian capital market affected by a shock in U.S federal interest rate or a shock in the world capital markets? iii) Is the Indian economy affected?  [eSS WP]


The Rise in Remittances to India: A Closer Look.  Muzaffar Chisti explores what India’s policy initiatives have achieved with regard to the flow of remittances and to attract NRI capital. [Migration Information Source]


Economic Reforms, Capital Inflows and Macro Economic Impact in India by Indrani Chakraborty. The effects of the inflows of private foreign capital on some major macroeconomic variables in India analyzed. [CDS WP]



NEW! Health e-newsletter, Vol 1, Issue 6, July 2007   ‘Brain Drain: UP government hospitals can't retain doctors’ other articles.

NEW! SAN: Newsletter of All India Secular Forum, II:7, July 2007

Current issues of:

Medico Friend Circle Bulletin, December 2006-March 2007. Focus: Public Health Education.

Far Eastern Economic Review, June issue

Post Autistic Economic Review

Inequality and Poverty

Conceptualizing Economic Marginalization. Notes from a keynote by Ravi Kanbur at the Living at the Margins Conference discuss how ‘economic marginalisation’ should conceptualised it, and what the implications are of such conceptualization.


Effect of Structural and Conditional Rigidities on Moving a Beneficiary from Passive to Active State.  Arindam Banik and Pradip K.Bhaumik conduct an ordered logistic analysis of primary data collected from the SITRA programme to mine demographic characteristics, incomes, gender, and the quality of the tool kits distributed. [eSS WP]

Questioning the Power of Resilience: Are Children Up To the Task of Disrupting the Transmission of Poverty? Jo Boyden and Elizabeth Cooper explore the development and application of the concept of resilience as a tool for examining the ways in which young humans are able to overcome the negative outcomes of poverty. [CPRC WP].


Personal Well-Being during Growth by Eric V. Edmonds explores the relative importance of improvements in economic status in explaining improvements in non-monetary measures of well-being during Vietnam's economic boom in the 1990s. [NBER WP].


International Trade

Trade and Economic Arrangements between India and South Asia in the Context of Regional Construction and Globalisation. Laurence Henry explores the arrangements and groupings between India and South-East Asia. [CSH OP]


Trade Liberalization and Industrial Productivity: An Assessment of Developing Country Experiences by Deb Kusum Das The relationship between trade liberalization and industrial productivity in Latin America, Africa and Asia is explored. [ICRIER WP]


OECD Agricultural Trade Reforms Impact on India's Prices and Producer's Welfare by Surabhi Mittal. With the focus on global agriculture in the Doha Round, the paper finds that even if product specific subsidies are reduced or eliminated, the price transmission mechanism is so poor that it will be difficult to pass it on to the farmers. [ICRIER WP]


Trade Policy and Urban-Rural Inequalities In LDCS: A Simulation Experiment With A New Economic Geography Model Ayele Gelan suggest that trade

liberalization can improve urban-rural inequalities as long as the country that implements trade policy reform does not face any trade restrictions in the external market.  [Presented at International Conference on Globalisation and Development].


India’s Growth

Is India Better off Today Than 15 Years Ago? A Robust Multidimensional Answer by Nicolas Gravel and Abhiroop Mukhopadhyay using robust multidimensional methodologies the paper evaluates India’s growth over the last 15 years and finds it to be the spectacular growth episode that India has experienced in the last 15 years. [CSH OP]


Governance and Reforms

Governance Institutions and Development by Avinash K. Dixit

The problem of corruption has become very important in recent thinking on development policy. But corruption is only a part of the more general issue of economic governance, and of more general policy questions concerning the design and reform of institutions of governance. [Second P. R. Brahmananda Memorial Lecture (RBI)].


Improving Delivery of Programmes through Administrative Reforms Naresh C.  Saxena Improvement in governance would take place only when countervailing forces in society develop confidence and autonomy to oppose inefficiency and corruption in government. [NAC Paper]


Agricultural Stagnation and its Impact

Agrarian Scenario in Post-reform India: A Story of Distress, Despair and Death.  Srijit Mishra offers a perspective data-rich view of the impact of the stagnation of the agriculture sector on the small and marginal farmers from 1995-2004. [IGIDR WP].


Globalisation and Production

Offshoring in a Ricardian World by Andrés  Rodríguez-Clare proposes a Ricardian model to analyze the effects of increased fragmentation and offshoring showing that in particular the rich country always gains from increased fragmentation, whereas poor countries see their static gains partially eroded. [NBER]


Book Reviews

Veena Poonacha reviews Writing the Women’s Movement: A Reader edited by Mala Khullar; Zuban (in collaboration with EWHA Women’s University Seoul).

•Review of Thomas J. Ward Jr.'s Black Physicians in the Jim Crow South by James Seymour, University of Arkansas Press, 2003.

Anurag Kaushik and Manmohan Singh Negi review FDI: Patterns and Trends Review of Foreign Capital Inflows to China, India and the Caribbean: Trends, Assessments and Determinants by Arindam Banik and Pradip K. Bhaumik; Palgrave-Macmillan.



Vijay Laxmi Pandey reviews Mahesh Rangarajan edited Environmental Issues in India: A Reader.


Human Rights

Custodial Death of Rohtas Singh of Haryana: A Fact Finding Report Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) report on the death in custody of Rohtas Singh, owner of a ready-made garments shop in Banchari village in Haryana, India.


Evaluate Anti-Naxal Policies of the Chhattisgarh Government.  Naxal Conflict Monitor (ACHR) April 11, 2007 points out that involving civilians directly in armed conflicts only increases the risks to their lives and prolongs the conflicts.


Environment and Ecology

Climate Change and Sectors: Some Like it Hot! by Eric Heymann. Despite major uncertainties this analysis that demonstrates a clear trend: the regulatory-market economy dimension of climate change will affect most sectors much earlier than the environmental-climatic dimension. [Deutsche Bank]


The Trade-Off among Carbon Emissions, Economic Growth and Poverty Reduction in India.  Vijay Prakash  Ojha examines the consequences of a domestic carbon tax policy, and participation in a global tradable emission permits regime on carbon emissions, GDP, and poverty, in India.[SANDEE, Nepal]


National Health Accounts (NHA), 2001-02 NHA is a tried and tested tool for summarizing, describing, and analyzing the financing of national health systems. The first report of the newly established NHA Cell in collaboration with WHO.

Handbook on Pre-conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act, 1994 and Rules and Amendments. An official compilation and a comprehensive set of guidelines on the provisions of the Act, the Rules and their implementation mechanism.

Pakistan Budget 2007-08.Minister of finance Omar Ayub Khan’s Budget speech and details.



Editorial Team: Padma Prakash (Editor), Lakshmi Priya and Savita Kulkarni.

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