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Automation and inequality

Public discourse around automation has seen some take a fairly alarmist view – with concerns around its impact on employment, wages, the labour share of national income, and inequality. Others take ...

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Inequality, labour market trends, and the welfare State

All around the world, rising levels of inequality – particularly in the last 3-4 decades – have been recognised as a major issue. In this context, David Green (University of British Columbia) and ...

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Temperature, labour reallocation, and industrial production

While it is well-established that agricultural production is vulnerable to weather shocks, less is known about how those affected respond or the economic consequences of any responses. Analysing data ...

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141@10 | First Ashok Kotwal Memorial Lecture: The future of development

What is the 'fourth' fundamental law of capitalism? Will capital ‘inherit the earth’? Has the pandemic quickened the intuitive appeal of the capital-labour substitution? Should sovereign funds be ...

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Creative destruction and catch-up growth in India

In this post, Peters and Zilibotti compare the size of firms in India and the US, and find that the 90% of firms in India have four employees or less, and attribute it to the absence of creative destr...

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The promise of technology for women’s employment

The growth of digital labour platforms holds tremendous potential to improve employment outcomes for India’s young, urban population. In this post, Farzana Afridi discusses the challenges in leverag...

  • Perspectives

Mirroring realities: Digital technology through the eyes of women microentrepreneurs

The expansion of markets from physical spaces to e-commerce platforms during the pandemic widened the pre-existing digital gender divide in India. Employing the method of ‘auto-photography’, the t...

  • Notes from the Field

The role of political connections of firms during a crisis

Research has shown that political connections matter for a firm during times of economic crisis. This article refers to a unique data set of political connections of firms in India, and finds that fir...

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Changing the frame: Making small firms compete like large ones

Although small firms have natural advantages, they face constraints when it comes to reach and scale; this prevents them from competing with larger firms. Pankaj Chandra shares business models from It...

  • Perspectives

Introduction to e-Symposium: The good jobs challenge in India

One of the primary concerns for India is the question of jobs – specifically good quality jobs. Why has India lagged in creating opportunities for its working age population, and how different secto...

  • Symposium

Barriers to upgrading in developing countries

In recent decades, several countries have seen rapid development, aided in part by the adoption of advanced technologies. In this post, Eric Verhoogen looks at recent research to highlight the factors...

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The effect of easing labour restrictions: Evidence on employment in Rajasthan

Stringent labour laws in India can hinder firms’ growth and increase the incidence of informal and contract employment. Looking at evidence from firms in Rajasthan after the amendment of the Industr...

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The future of work from home

With the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic, work from home became the norm in 2020. However, even though mobility restrictions have been lifted, many workplaces all over the world continue to follow a m...

  • Podcasts

The future of work from home

With the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic, work from home became the norm in 2020. However, even though mobility restrictions have been lifted, many workplaces all over the world continue to follow a m...

  • Videos

Birth versus worth: Impact of the caste system on entrepreneurship in India

The prevalence of the caste system has restricted social mobility in India. This article further looks at how caste disparities have contributed to the misallocation of resources across firms. It quan...

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Recent Contributors


Debraj Ray

New York University


I4I Team

Ideas for India


Michael Peters

Yale University


Fabrizio Zilibotti

Yale University


Farzana Afridi

Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi Centre


Aneysha Roy

SEWA Bharat


Sheetal Sekhri

University of Virginia


Gaurav Chiplunkar

University of Virginia

View all Contributors

Most Popular Productivity & Innovation Posts

The impact of robotisation on the world economy: A forward-looking review

Robots have long existed in human imagination and only recently in the real world. The baggage of past imagination often intrudes into our understanding of how real robots will affect our economic liv...

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Tripura’s bamboo sector: Potential and challenges

About a third of the total area of Tripura is covered by bamboo, and bamboo has emerged as a key thrust area for the state’s industrial development. Based on a field visit that was undertaken to stu...

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An offline alternative for Aadhaar-based biometric authentication

While decision on the constitutionality of Aadhaar by the Supreme Court of India remains a matter of speculation, it has become abundantly clear that most of the use cases for Aadhaar-based biometric ...

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