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Do value-added taxes benefit firms? Evidence from the adoption of state-specific value-added taxes

Value-added tax (VAT) systems have grown popular in the last 30 years, especially among developing countries looking for ways to raise tax revenue efficiently. Using 2000-2012 data on product, state-s...

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Does going cashless make you tax-rich? Evidence from India’s demonetisation

During 2014-2017, the share of adults using electronic payments in the developing world increased by over a third, and policymakers have expressed optimism regarding the role of this trend in promotin...

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Fixing incentives for power plants to reduce outages

Consumers in India face frequent power outages despite relatively high-quality infrastructure and ample supply of power plants. This article identifies a novel explanation for India’s blackouts: whe...

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Digging for dirt: Rent-seeking among elected politicians in India’s mineral belt

The Indian mining industry is no stranger to corruption scandals and every year dozens of environmental activists are murdered for exposing illegal mining activities. This article discusses the impact...

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DUET: Decentralise employment generation to urban local bodies

Dilip Mookherjee supports Drèze’s suggestion to decentralise employment generation to urban local bodies, and contends that the moribund nature of urban local government is a key reason for the neg...

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Synchronised elections, voter behaviour, and governance outcomes

An active policy proposal of the Government of India is to hold national elections at the same time as the assembly elections of all the states. This article examines whether holding national and stat...

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Citizen-State relations: Countryside and city

To what extent do citizens expect officials to respond to local problems, and how do they make demands on the State to advance their well-being? Based on surveys in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, this ...

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Does political reservation work, and for whom?

Does political reservation undermine or promote development, and for whom? This article presents an analysis of India’s Scheduled Areas, which reserve political office for the historically disadvant...

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Covid-19: Is it time to decentralise power?

Raghuram Rajan speaks to Econ Film’s CoronaNomics show, on the merits of de-centralised governance in the battle against the Covid-19 pandemic, how local authorities can be empowered, and the risk o...

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The politics of post-retirement appointments: Corruption in the Supreme Court?

The Indian judiciary bats for judicial independence. Wary of executive interference, judges ferociously protect their institutional turf. But does India’s judicial system suffer from an underhanded ...

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Court congestion, caste identity, and business performance

Effective contract enforcement is the key for the formation and expansion of business enterprises. But how does improvement in court performance matter differently to different caste groups? This arti...

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Kerala’s management of Covid-19: Key learnings

Kerala was the first Indian state to be affected by Covid-19 with the highest number of cases at one point in time, but today it has a flat infection curve and one of the highest recovery rates in Ind...

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How district courts influence firm growth

The Economic Survey 2018-19 highlights that the single biggest constraint to ease of doing business in India is contract enforcement and dispute resolution, and increasing capacity in lower judiciary ...

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Electoral cycles and incomplete public works projects: An analysis of the MPLAD scheme

The successful execution of public works programmes undertaken by governments often hinges on the completion of a vast array of local-level projects intended to create tangible amenities to improve th...

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There are none so blind as they who will not see

Based on Government of India’s own data, the government and the community of economists in India have come up with different narratives about the position of Indian economy. In this post, Pronab Sen...

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Indian Institute of Management Bangalore

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Most Popular Governance Posts

Unique Health Identification and Aadhaar: A case for mandatory linkage

As part of the Digital India initiative, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) issues a Unique Health Identification (UHID) number to each patient, which documents their entire journey in th...

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Caste dominance in rural India: Cause and effect

Rural India remains a caste-based society. This column explores why caste continues to play such an important role and what the effects are. It argues that trade and agricultural productivity suffer, ...

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Rethinking cadre allocation procedures in civil services

The allocation procedure of All-India Services’ officers to states is an important aspect of personnel administration in the public sector. This article shows that a change in allocation policy in 2...

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