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Ashok Kotwal
On demonetisation
Posted on: 23 Dec 2016
On the evening of 8 November, the Prime Minister announced on national television that Rs. ... read on »
Introduction to e-Symposium: The GDP conundrum
Posted on: 16 Nov 2016
Ever since India’s Central Statistical Organisation came out with the new GDP series with ... read on »
Introduction to e-Symposium: The idea of a universal basic income in the Indian context
Posted on: 26 Sep 2016
The idea of an unconditional basic income given to all citizens by the State, has caught o ... read on »
Debate: The Aadhaar Bill
Posted on: 02 May 2016
In a debate on the Aadhaar Bill, commentators from academia and civil society will ... read on »

Tag: cities

Constructing housing for the poor without destroying their communities
Rohini Pande
Posted on: 24 Mar 2017

The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana aims to achieve housing for all by 2022. However, vacancy of 23% was reported last year in urban housing built under the programme. In this article, Rohini Pande, contends that take-up can be increased if policies are designed in a way that allows the intended beneficiaries to preserve their social networks when they relocate.
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The North-South urban paradox
Chinmay Tumbe
Posted on: 22 Mar 2017
Topics:   Urbanisation


Why is northern India experiencing faster urban growth but slower urbanisation relative to the South? This column addresses this question by highlighting the interconnection between the demographic transition and urban processes in India.
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Moving towards better definitions of ‘urban’ in India
Komal Hiranandani , Mudit Kapoor , Vaidehi Tandel
Posted on: 15 Sep 2016
Topics:   Urbanisation


According to the 2011 Census, 31% of the country is ‘urban’. Using definitions of urbanisation that are different from those used by the government, this column demonstrates that this figure may be an underestimate. It is important to recognise and fix the flaws in the current method of defining urban areas as it forms the basis for important policies such as eligibility for government schemes.
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Driving restrictions in Delhi: Real benefits and warning signs
Gabriel Kreindler
Posted on: 15 Jun 2016

The driving restrictions policy that Delhi experimented with in January was implemented for a second time in April for a fortnight. This column finds that the policy lowered traffic congestion; the impact was notable in size and consistent over the two rounds. However, drivers managed to partly circumvent the policy legally, and the policy caused some disruption to economic activity.
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Driving Delhi: The impact of driving restrictions on driver behaviour
Gabriel Kreindler , Jasmine Shah
Posted on: 08 Feb 2016

In an attempt to address Delhi’s grave pollution problem, the state government experimented with a driving restrictions policy for a fortnight in January. Based on a phone survey of a sample of 614 drivers in the city, this column describes how the policy changed drivers’ behaviour in terms of labour supply, number of daily trips, travel modes, and satisfaction, between restricted and unrestricted days while the policy was in effect.
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Data-jam: Could data reduce road congestion in Dhaka?
Filippo Sebastio
Posted on: 01 Feb 2016
Topics:   Urbanisation


While urbanisation is key to economic growth, failure to address the downsides of the process - such as congestion - may deter the ability of cities to achieve their full growth potential. This column examines the challenges of road congestion in Dhaka, and explores the potential for traffic data to uncover evidenced-based policy designs that can effectively mitigate the problem.
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Making the best out of waste
Sourabh Bhattacharjee , Ujjwal Kumar Sinha
Posted on: 24 Apr 2015

Given rapid urbanisation and the increasing amounts of solid waste generated in India cities, there is a pressing need for effective waste management processes. In this article, Sourabh Bhattacharjee and Ujjwal Sinha, who have been associated with a successful waste management project in Saharanpur, provide an outline of the project and highlight lessons for other Indian cities.
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Two views on the Budget
Eswar Prasad , Bharat Ramaswami
Posted on: 12 Jul 2014

The Modi government’s first Budget has received a mixed response. Eswar Prasad and Bharat Ramaswami present two distinct views on the Budget. While Prasad is of the opinion that the Budget hits the right notes and emphasises some key policy priorities, Ramaswami believes that a coherent policy and worldview is yet to emerge.
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Growing through cities in India
Ejaz Ghani , William Kerr , Ishani Tewari
Posted on: 20 Jun 2014

Do cities grow through specialisation or diversity? This column measures specialisation and diversity for the manufacturing and services sectors in India. It finds that Indian districts with a broader set of industries exhibit greater employment growth. This is particularly true for low population densities, rural areas and unorganised sector, reflecting knowledge flow and the inclusive nature of employment growth due to diversity.
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Open defecation in cities: A faltering India story
Meera Mehta , Dinesh Mehta
Posted on: 23 Apr 2014
Topics:   Health , Urbanisation


Despite significant public investment in urban sanitation, over 37 million people in Indian cities resort to open defecation. This column examines the existing information on open defecation in urban India, and finds that the most important determinant is access to on-premise toilets. Local government leadership, targeted and smart subsidies, stakeholder collaboration and innovative financing options can help increase such access and accelerate elimination of the problem.
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What makes cities more competitive in India?
Ejaz Ghani , William Kerr , Stephen D O'Connell
Posted on: 07 Mar 2014
Topics:   Urbanisation


Policymakers in both developed and developing countries want to make cities more competitive, attract new entrepreneurs, boost economic growth, and promote job creation. This column shows that the two most consistent factors that bring entrepreneurs in manufacturing and services to a district in India are its education and quality of local physical infrastructure.
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India’s spatial disparities: Have big cities become too congested?
Klaus Desmet , Ejaz Ghani , Stephen D O'Connell , Esteban Rossi-Hansberg
Posted on: 17 Jan 2014
Topics:   Urbanisation


A key driver of the Indian economy is its rapidly growing service sector. This column compares the spatial growth pattern of the sector in India and other countries. It is found that while in US and Europe, the service sector is becoming increasing concentrated in medium-sized locations, high-density locations in India such as Mumbai and Chennai continue to attract more service sector jobs, causing congestion.
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JNNURM and environmental sustainability
Kavita Wankhade
Posted on: 30 Sep 2013

The Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission was launched in 2005 as India’s urban flagship programme to close investment gaps in urban infrastructure, and to implement reforms for better urban management. This column assesses the extent to which sustainability concerns are addressed by the programme, and makes recommendations in this regard.
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The Golden Quadrilateral: Highway to success
Ejaz Ghani , Arti Grover Goswami , William Kerr
Posted on: 10 May 2013
Topics:   Infrastructure


The Golden Quadrilateral, which connects four major cities in India, is the fifth-longest highway in the world. This column presents research that finds that by improving connectivity, the highway has helped with the efficient distribution of industries across locations. It has facilitated the shift of land and building intensive industries from the core to peripheries of cities, and has made medium-sized cities more attractive locations for manufacturing activity.
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Is India’s manufacturing sector moving out of cities?
Ejaz Ghani , Arti Grover Goswami , William Kerr
Posted on: 15 Feb 2013
Topics:   Urbanisation


While urbanisation is moving ahead at a rapid pace in India, industrialisation has slowed down. What explains this disconnect between urbanisation and infrastructure? This column presents results of a study that suggests that the formal manufacturing sector is moving from urban to rural locations, and the informal sector is moving from rural to urban locations.
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