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  • Author: Ankit Bhardwaj, Radhika Khosla
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Indian cities routinely make decisions on land use, housing, water, transport, economic growth and waste management that have implications for climate change mitigation and adaptation. Aligning these sectoral actions with climate goals involves understanding how infrastructural systems interact and how these choices address both development and climate objectives. City governments, as managers of these various infrastructure systems, can co-ordinate such decision-making. However, so far, this is largely ad hoc. We show how cities can use a ‘multiple objective’ approach to systematically examine, and make explicit, the linkages between local objectives, climate change mitigation and adaptation across their planning portfolio.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Water, Economic growth, Urban, Sanitation
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Meenakshi Kapoor, Nwe Ni Soe, Vidya Viswanathan
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Land transformation has been at the centre of economic growth of post-colonial, Asian nation-states. While their political reforms and economic policies have focused on land governance, the outcomes have resulted in promoting privatisation and speculative business interest in ecologically sensitive landscapes that are also under diverse forms of common use by resource-dependent communities. A three-year study undertaken to understand community-level responses to land use transformation in India, Indonesia and Myanmar shows that the current scale and approach of land–intensive development in these large democracies is facilitated by fast-paced, top down policy changes. These policies are ‘stacked’ (when multiple layers of current and revoked laws are simultaneously in use) rather than integrated and their implementation is the responsibility of various authorities and agencies that overlap. Growing private investments in land that has remained within varying degrees of state control have changed the way land is managed. Land has become increasingly securitised and ‘out of bounds’ for small farmers and other land-users with or without recognised forms of ownership and use rights. Land conflicts are caused due to coercive acquisition processes or land grabs, unlawful operations of projects and long pending remedies to social and environmental impacts. In many instances, these conflicts begin even before the final decisions on projects are taken and persist for years. Highly capitalised land use change brings powerful investors and corporations, governments and local communities in unequal and precarious arrangements of negotiation and confrontation. Citizens and communities affected by land use change, use varied strategies such as administrative complaints, protests, litigation, media campaigns and political advocacy, and engage in improving project design and implementation, increase compensations, restore community access to resources and get a review on the operations of harmful projects. These are done under conditions of political intransigence and criminalisation of those who speak up. While all three countries have recognised land conflicts and their impact on development plans and proposals, they are yet to give affected people a formal and effective role in land and natural resource governance. This is the study report on Myanmar.
  • Topic: Privatization, Natural Resources, Governance, Economic growth, Land Law, Land Rights
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Manju Menon
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Land transformation has been at the centre of economic growth of post-colonial, Asian nation-states. While their political reforms and economic policies have focused on land governance, the outcomes have resulted in promoting privatisation and speculative business interest in ecologically sensitive landscapes that are also under diverse forms of common use by resource-dependent communities. A three-year study undertaken to understand community-level responses to land use transformation in India, Indonesia and Myanmar shows that the current scale and approach of land–intensive development in these large democracies is facilitated by fast-paced, top down policy changes. These policies are ‘stacked’ (when multiple layers of current and revoked laws are simultaneously in use) rather than integrated and their implementation is the responsibility of various authorities and agencies that overlap. Growing private investments in land that has remained within varying degrees of state control have changed the way land is managed. Land has become increasingly securitised and ‘out of bounds’ for small farmers and other land-users with or without recognised forms of ownership and use rights. Land conflicts are caused due to coercive acquisition processes or land grabs, unlawful operations of projects and long pending remedies to social and environmental impacts. In many instances, these conflicts begin even before the final decisions on projects are taken and persist for years. Highly capitalised land use change brings powerful investors and corporations, governments and local communities in unequal and precarious arrangements of negotiation and confrontation. Citizens and communities affected by land use change, use varied strategies such as administrative complaints, protests, litigation, media campaigns and political advocacy, and engage in improving project design and implementation, increase compensations, restore community access to resources and get a review on the operations of harmful projects. These are done under conditions of political intransigence and criminalisation of those who speak up. While all three countries have recognised land conflicts and their impact on development plans and proposals, they are yet to give affected people a formal and effective role in land and natural resource governance. This is the overview of the study's methodology and findings.
  • Topic: Development, Privatization, Natural Resources, Business , Economic growth, Land Law, Conflict, Land Rights
  • Political Geography: Indonesia, India, Asia, Southeast Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Kanchi Kohli, Meenakshi Kapoor, Manju Menon, Vidya Viswanathan
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Land transformation has been at the centre of economic growth of post-colonial, Asian nation-states. While their political reforms and economic policies have focused on land governance, the outcomes have resulted in promoting privatisation and speculative business interest in ecologically sensitive landscapes that are also under diverse forms of common use by resource-dependent communities. A three-year study undertaken to understand community-level responses to land use transformation in India, Indonesia and Myanmar shows that the current scale and approach of land–intensive development in these large democracies is facilitated by fast-paced, top down policy changes. These policies are ‘stacked’ (when multiple layers of current and revoked laws are simultaneously in use) rather than integrated and their implementation is the responsibility of various authorities and agencies that overlap. Growing private investments in land that has remained within varying degrees of state control have changed the way land is managed. Land has become increasingly securitised and ‘out of bounds’ for small farmers and other land-users with or without recognised forms of ownership and use rights. Land conflicts are caused due to coercive acquisition processes or land grabs, unlawful operations of projects and long pending remedies to social and environmental impacts. In many instances, these conflicts begin even before the final decisions on projects are taken and persist for years. Highly capitalised land use change brings powerful investors and corporations, governments and local communities in unequal and precarious arrangements of negotiation and confrontation. Citizens and communities affected by land use change, use varied strategies such as administrative complaints, protests, litigation, media campaigns and political advocacy, and engage in improving project design and implementation, increase compensations, restore community access to resources and get a review on the operations of harmful projects. These are done under conditions of political intransigence and criminalisation of those who speak up. While all three countries have recognised land conflicts and their impact on development plans and proposals, they are yet to give affected people a formal and effective role in land and natural resource governance. This is the study report on India.
  • Topic: Development, Privatization, Natural Resources, Business , Economic growth, Land Law, Conflict, Land Rights
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Namita Wahi, Ankit Bhatia, Pallav Shukla, Dhruva Gandhi, Shubham Jain, Upasana Chauhan
  • Publication Date: 03-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Context: India faces serious challenges in creating development processes that generate economic growth while being socially inclusive, ecologically sustainable, politically feasible, and in accordance with the Rule of Law. Equitable and efficient acquisition of land by the state for economic development projects, including infrastructure and industry, lies at the heart of these challenges. Simultaneously, securing constitutionally guaranteed land rights to the poorest and most vulnerable communities in India against the state and other dominant communities, has been considered crucial to their economic and social empowerment. Land is not only an important economic resource and source of livelihoods, it is also central to community identity, history and culture. Unsurprisingly then, throughout India, dispute over state acquisition of land that deprives people of their land rights spans various dimensions of economic, social, and political life. How do we mitigate this conflict? The CPR Land Rights Initiative report on ‘Land Acquisition in India: A Review of Supreme Court cases from 1950-2016’, offers some preliminary answers to this question. Not only is this report the first comprehensive country-wide study of land acquisition disputes since India's independence, but also for the first time ever analyses these disputes along various metrics, such as i) public purpose, ii) procedure for acquisition, iii) compensation, iv) invocation of the urgency clause, v) pendency of claims, and vi) tracks trends with respect to distribution of disputes across geography and time, and central and state laws. The Report also analyses litigation under the newly enacted Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 (LARR Act) for the three year period, 2014 to 2016. A detailed presentation of the findings from the report can be accessed here. Key findings: Reasons for inequity between state and land losers: The Report concludes that the political and social contestation over land acquisition stems from the inherently coercive nature of the land acquisition process, which creates a severe imbalance of power between the state and land losers. While much of this imbalance was created by the text of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, a considerable part of it could also be attributed to executive non-compliance with the rule of law. The result is a situation of great inequity for the land losers. Legal reform under the LARR Act should be implemented by government, not subverted to redress these inequities: The Report finds that specific provisions of the LARR Act are steps in the right direction to redress the imbalance of power that was built into the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 in so far as: i) they empower livelihood losers along with title-holders to bring claims for compensation and rehabilitation, ii) bring compensation requirements in accordance with existing reality, and iii) introduce requirements of consent and social impact assessment. The Report shows that litigation helps channelise political contestation of state action into legal as opposed to extra legal disputes. Therefore, by empowering hitherto disempowered land losers to bring claims under the LARR Act, the Act will help preempt extra-legal conflict. Since conflict inevitably stalls or derails legitimate development projects, it is in the interest of the government to comply with, and not subvert the LARR Act. Legal reforms must be supplemented by administrative and bureaucratic reforms: The Report highlights that legal reform is a necessary but not a sufficient precondition for ensuring greater equity and efficiency within the land acquisition process. In the absence of administrative and bureaucratic reforms, the introduction of the LARR Act will not succeed in eliminating inequities and inefficiencies embedded within the implementation of existing land acquisition procedures. In fact, the increase in procedural requirements under the LARR Act implies an even greater need for securing executive compliance with the rule of law, in order to translate the equities intended by these additional procedures into reality for land losers. Types of administrative reforms required: Such administrative reforms include building of state capacity to meaningfully comply with the increased procedural requirements stipulated by the LARR Act, and designing institutional structures that incentivise such compliance with the rule of law. This, in turn, requires a serious mind-set shift within the government toward accepting the reform enshrined in the LARR Act, and not subverting it as we have seen in both the LARR Ordinance, and the state amendments to the LARR Act, as also the rules adopted to implement the LARR Act in the states.
  • Topic: History, Reform, Economic growth, Land Law, Courts, Supreme Court, Rule of Law, Land Rights
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Bryane Michael, Christopher Hartwell, Vladimir Korovkin
  • Publication Date: 11-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: How should convenience store operators like Thailand’s CP-ALL construct its value chains? What does economic theory teach us about an under – modelled area of management theory (namely value chains)? In this paper, Bryane Michael, Christopher Hartwell and Vladimir Korovkin use a seemingly unrelated economic model analysing Vietnam to tell something about the conglomerates running convenience stores licenses like CP-ALL. They find that convenience stores may not want to raise capital from Thai banks and the Bangkok stock market when labour productivity exceeds capital’s. They also find that inefficiencies inherent in Thai markets may significantly reduce the optimal size of a convenience store operator like CP ALL. These operators may also (counter-intuitively) need to give up a significant share of their profits to “value service providers” when the cost of capital falls. As such, counter to the usual World Bank nostrums, improvements in Bangkok’s stock market and banks may actually hurt firms like CP ALL.
  • Topic: Development, Economic growth, Innovation, Trade
  • Political Geography: Asia, Thailand
  • Author: Radhika Khosla
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: India is undergoing structural urban and economic transitions and has set ambitious policy targets to meet its rising energy needs for development. Expanding coal and renewables are two important pillars of this undertaking and, since 2008, climate protection is of increasing concern. India’s international engagements reflect these motivations of both energy security and climate change, where India is increasingly engaging in transfer of clean and efficient energy technologies to developing countries like itself.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Development, Energy Policy, Economic growth, Urban
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Nimmi Kurian
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: China’s One Belt One Road Initiative has virtually been a lightning rod for divisive debate and a polarised narrative since it was announced in 2013. For India, it has been the proverbial elephant in the room, as it awkwardly swings between willful pretence and wishful erasure. The policy brief looks at the clues this initiative could offer on the likely drivers of China’s economic diplomacy in the region. There could be three signals for India to watch out for. A clear pointer is the growing role of domestic determinants in setting the direction and pace of China’s regional economic engagement. Another pointer could be China’s role in shaping and defining Asia’s new institutional financial architecture. Lastly, the initiative could be a signal of how China is likely to engage with the larger questions of benefit sharing, trade-offs and the allocation of risks and burdens in subregional Asia.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Infrastructure, Economic growth, Soft Power
  • Political Geography: China, South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Geetima Das Krishna, Rajiv Kumar
  • Publication Date: 07-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Economic recovery remains fragile on the back of a weak consumption demand. Sustained high growth will be achieved only with an upturn in the investment cycle. The government seems to have understood the importance of pump-priming the capex cycle directly through higher public capital expenditure and front loading the expenditure. While private investment remains muted due to stressed corporate balance sheets, weak external and domestic demand prospects and commercial banks’ cautious approach to expanding credit, there are some early signs that the private investment cycle is likely to turn around in the next six to nine months.
  • Topic: Government, Economic growth, Banks, Investment, Macroeconomics
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia