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On the perils of embedded experiments

  • Perspectives

Role of history in shaping India’s economic development

As India is now completing 75 years of Independence, two big questions loom over the conversation around India’s economic development: How successful was the Indian economy before and during colonia...

  • Podcasts

Left and right: Examining the evolution of political ideologies

With the advent of globalisation, the struggle between the ‘left’ and ‘right’ – as defined in Marxian terms – rapidly evolved from one between economic ideologies, to cultural wars. In thi...

  • Videos

Culture and development

How did human society evolve from being organised predominantly around large kin-based networks, to one with strong notions of individualism? To examine this question, Joseph Henrich (Harvard Universi...

  • Videos
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RCTs for policymaking: Ethical and methodological considerations

The last decade has seen an increased adoption of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) for answering policy questions in developing countries. RCTs are being preferred over other research methods mainl...

  • Perspectives

Doing our bidding: Auctions and the greater common good

This year’s Nobel Prize in Economics has been awarded to Paul Milgrom and Robert Wilson for improvements to auction theory and inventions of new auction formats. In this post, Parikshit Ghosh discus...

  • Perspectives

In the eyes of the beholder: How artisans set prices for their products

The developing world is replete with people working in low-income, but creative occupations, such as artisanship. However, little is concretely known about how they set prices for their products. Base...

  • Articles

Covid-19 lockdown and criminal activity: Evidence from Bihar

The lockdown imposed to fight the Covid-19 pandemic has had wide-ranging consequences for the society. This article analyses the impact of the lockdown on criminal activity in Bihar using up-to-date p...

  • Articles

The institutional partnership model: Embedding evidence into the policy equation

One path for capitalising on government interest in evidence-informed policymaking is for the research community to build long-term institutional partnerships with governments to create an ecosystem w...

  • Notes from the Field

The SHRUG: A new high-resolution data platform for research on India

The Socioeconomic High-resolution Rural-Urban Geographic Dataset on India (SHRUG) is a new data source that describes socioeconomic development in India. In this post, Asher, Lunt, and Novosad describ...

  • Perspectives

Death penalty for gender-based violence: A band-aid solution for a broken system

In 2018, Government of India amended the Protection of Children against Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012 and the Indian Penal Code to provide for death penalty for rape of children under 12 years of ...

  • Perspectives

Note from I4I Team: Happy Holidays!

We are now closed for Christmas and New Year, until Thursday, 2 January 2020. We will be back in the New Year with new articles, perspectives, notes from the field, e-symposia, explainers, videos, and...

  • Perspectives

A village’s journey of alcohol de-addiction due to children’s campaigning

In just two years, the alcohol addiction of an entire village could be eliminated due to the efforts of a school’s students and their teacher in Sangli district of Maharashtra. In this note, Shirish...

  • Notes from the Field

What lies behind this year's economics Nobel

In this post, Maitreesh Ghatak discusses how randomised controlled trials – the use of which was pioneered by this year’s economics Nobel Laureates, Banerjee, Duflo, and Kremer – have been succe...

  • Perspectives

Three Nobel Laureates who incited a movement

This year’s Nobel Prize for Economics has been awarded to the trio responsible for revolutionising the field of development economics: Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, and Michael Kremer. In this pos...

  • Perspectives

Helping youth discover self-identity through social purpose

‘Emerging adulthood’ refers to the transitory phase from adolescence to adulthood, when young adults are on an intense search for authenticity, awareness, personal definition, and exploration of w...

  • Notes from the Field

Recent Contributors


Amey Sapre

National Institute of Public Finance and Policy


Harshvardhan Singh Garhwal

Indian Statistical Service


Parikshit Ghosh

Editor-in-Chief, I4I; Delhi School of Economics


I4I Team

Ideas for India


Rohini Somanathan

Delhi School of Economics


Bharat Ramaswami

Ashoka University


Ashwini Kulkarni

Pragati Abhiyan


Anand Swamy

Williams College

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Most Popular Miscellany Posts

Evidence, policy, and politics

Commenting on the concept of evidence-based policy, Jean Drèze argues that the relation between evidence and policy needs further thought. Based on his involvement with social policy in India, he bel...

  • Perspectives

On the perils of embedded experiments

There is growing interest in ‘embedded experiments’, conducted by researchers and policymakers as a team. Aside from their potential scale, the main attraction of these experiments is that they se...

  • Perspectives

The particulars of social policy in India: Evidence, State capacity, and policy design

Economist-activist Jean Drèze has argued that economists are no better equipped to comment on development policy design than other social science researchers and other stakeholders, and that policyma...

  • Perspectives