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  • Author: Navroz K. Dubash, Sunita S. Kale, Ranjit Bharvirkar, Ashwini K. Swain, Elizabeth Chatterjee, Hema Ramakrishnan, Jonathan Balls, Kalpana Dixit, Meera Sudhakar, Megha Kaladharan, Rohit Chandra, Siddharth Sareen
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: This is a compilation of blogs by the authors of 'Mapping Power: The Political Economy of Electricity in India’s States' (Oxford University Press), edited by Navroz K. Dubash (Centre for Policy Research), Sunila S. Kale (University of Washington), and Ranjit S. Bharvirkar (Regulatory Assistance Project). Featuring analysis from the book, this compilation highlights the politics of electricity access and distribution in Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, and the National Capital Region in India.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Political Economy, Infrastructure, Social Policy, Electricity
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Navroz K. Dubash, Ashwini K. Swain
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: India’s move to electrify every village and household in the country has been lauded as a success. Building on decades of targeted programmes and public investments by multiple governments, the country completed 100% village electrification in April 2018; a year after, it has electrified nearly all ‘willing’ households. Despite the time it took to get here, these achievements are important milestones in India’s development trajectory. But does connecting households to the electric grid resolve the electricity access challenge? The answer depends on whether electrons flow through the wires and whether all consumers are served equally and adequately.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Infrastructure, Investment, Electricity
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Aditya Bhol, Shubhagato Dasgupta, Anindita Mukherjee, Aastha Jain
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: The aim of this white paper is to explore the nuances of the prevalence of on-site sanitation systems in large and dense villages of India. Villages which have a population of 1000 persons or more and a density of greater than or equal to 400 persons per square kilometre were classified as large and dense villages in an earlier research – Towards a New Research and Policy Paradigm: An Analysis of the Sanitation Situation in Large Dense Villages. Stimulated by the findings revealing a preferential pattern for selection of on-site sanitation systems in these settlements, a primary household survey was conducted in large and dense villages from five Indian states - Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. The survey also included qualitative components – stakeholder interviews and transect walks. In this study the survey data has been canvassed to explore the preference patterns of households and the factors guiding them in their decision making for the construction and maintenance of on-site sanitation systems. We find that these large and dense villages exhibit a higher preference for septic tanks over pits in all states except West Bengal where pits are preferred. A majority of households have reported their toilets were private constructions. We find the preference patterns are manifested not only by the choices of building septic tanks or pits but also through the large variations in their design and sizes which are influenced by socio-economic, technical and behavioural factors. We also find specific trends in demand for desludging services by households which are influenced by internal factors such as their social status and economic well-being and by external factors such as availability of mechanised operators or continued reliance on manual cleaning and their costs which cumulatively constitute the supply side of sanitation services.
  • Topic: Government, Water, Infrastructure, Sanitation
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Maanav Kumar, Parag Mohanty
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: This study looks at the development of legal and regulatory framework governing drinking water and sanitation services in South Africa, England and United States. Around 780 million worldwide do not have access to clean drinking water and almost 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation according to data published by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In such a situation, it becomes extremely important to study the legal and regulatory measures used internationally to control, manage and improve these resources. This study, covering South Africa, England and USA, sets out to identify, comprehend and analyze these legal frameworks and structures; examine the control exercised by national, state/provincial as well as municipal governments over water and sanitation-related questions; and the responsive measures being taken by them to preserve the water resources and their quality for future generations. The authors have observed that in presence of varying geographical, historical and social factors, while it would be impossible to compare each model against the other on the basis of merit, it becomes increasingly important for governments to balance the individual’s right to water with the planet’s ecological balance.
  • Topic: Environment, Government, Natural Resources, Water, Law, Regulation, Legislation, Sanitation
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia, Global Focus
  • Author: Ananth Padmanabhan, Arjun Sinha
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: E-commerce has come under heavy regulatory intervention in the past few months. From data localisation to mandatory sharing of data, and a catch-all definition of e-commerce itself to regulatory barriers for inventory-based business models in all these sectors, these recent proposals leave limited room for natural evolution through market competition. Pushing back against these proposals, this White Paper argues that a principles-based rather than rule-based approach must be adopted to regulate this sector. This can be operationalised through a four-step process: the first step is to identify critical sectors where a policy is required in the first place; the second requires prioritising concerns that regulation needs to address immediately rather than crystal-gazing; the third is to explore possible models of co-regulation; and the final step is to focus on effective enforcement of the limited number of areas where state intervention through policy would exist because of adherence to the first three steps.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Regulation, Internet, Business , Trade
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Publication Date: 02-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: Janabhivyakti, the Centre for Policy Research-Namati Environmental Justice Program and Oxfam India have jointly conducted a groundtruthing study of environmental violations in the Bodai-Daldali bauxite mine located in the Kabirdham district of Chhattisgarh. A groundtruthing study is the process of comparing the facts as mentioned in official documents with the impacts being reported by affected communities. The methodology included undertaking group discussions with the affected communities. During the group discussions, impacts which the communities were facing were discussed first. This was followed by brief discussions on the various laws and institutions which are available for dealing with impacts arising out of environmental violations. The violations were confirmed by government reports and independent research studies. These reports and studies date back to the year 2007, and some of the impacts have been in existence since the beginning of the mining operations, and have been recorded in the aforementioned reports.
  • Topic: Environment, Law Enforcement, Social Policy, Justice
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Andrew Reddie
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Berkeley APEC Study Center
  • Abstract: Cybersecurity has become a central political and economic challenge for governments and businesses around the world. But while election hacking, malware, and cyber warfare have dominated the public discourse, the academic and policy communities have largely ignored the diverse industrial policies that governments can use to bolster their domestic cybersecurity and technology industries. This paper provides an overview of many of the industrial policy approaches available to policymakers seeking to advance their cybersecurity industries, with an investigation of the consequences of policies for national and international economies as well as global governance frameworks.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Daniel Maxwell
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Feinstein International Center, Tufts University
  • Abstract: Attention to the growing number of people caught in crises characterized by extreme and often protracted levels of food insecurity, malnutrition, and mortality is increasing. The information systems that track these conditions and inform humanitarian decision-making have expanded substantially in the past two decades and in many cases have reached a degree of unprecedented sophistication. These famine early warning systems have become increasingly sophisticated in the past decade, but they still tend to be based on several assumptions that are important to understand. This paper briefly describes existing famine early warning systems and outlines some of the assumptions on which they are based— both in theory and in practice. Then it gives four brief case studies of recent famine or “famine-like” events and pieces together the formal analysis process with an attempt to reconstruct events on the ground from a conflict analysis perspective—highlighting the extent to which the formal famine analysis did or did not deal with conflict analyses and the political kryptonite around the discussion of “intent.” It closes with a summary of gaps in the current system and an assessment of the risks of trying to address those gaps through famine EWS or alternative means.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Humanitarian Aid, Food, Famine, Food Security, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Middle East, Yemen, North Africa, Ethiopia
  • Author: Maha Abdullah, Joy Al-Nemri, Emily Goldman, Ian James
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Feinstein International Center, Tufts University
  • Abstract: New Britain, Connecticut has a long history of immigration. This report focuses on the experiences of newly arrived Arabic-speaking immigrants and refugees from Syria, Iraq, Sudan, Yemen, and Morocco. The Arab population of New Britain has increased faster than other migrant populations over the last eight years, from 161 in 2010 to 733 in 2017. As of December 2018, there were approximately 260 Arabic-speaking families living in New Britain. The services in the city have taken notice and are starting to make changes to meet the needs of New Britain’s Arabic-speaking populations. Educators and employees of nonprofits told us that their organizations are still collecting data about New Britain’s Arabic-speaking community and trying to understand the specific needs of Arabic-speaking immigrants and refugees. Our research focuses on the organizations involved in the resettlement process and individuals’ experiences with the resettlement process. New Britain is a city with a well-documented history of welcoming immigrants, and the ways in which that history is remembered affect how refugees and immigrants adapt today.
  • Topic: Migration, Refugees
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Syria
  • Author: Helen Young, Elizabeth Stites, Anastasia Marshak
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Feinstein International Center, Tufts University
  • Abstract: This is the third in a series of three briefing papers that form part of the Mind the Gap: Bridging the Research, Policy, and Practice Divide to Enhance Livelihood Resilience in Conflict Settings project. The first two briefing papers accompany regional case-study reports on Chad, South Sudan and the Sudan, and on Uganda that challenge many long-held assumptions about nutrition and livelihoods in countries struggling to recover from conflict, violence and fragility. FAO reviewed these regional case-studies on resilience and vulnerability at a two-day high-level workshop in Rome in November 2018. This brief summarizes the report highlights on the resilience and vulnerability of populations affected by conflict, including insights from the workshop participants and some implications for policies, programs, and future research.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Conflict Prevention, Food, Famine, Food Security, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Africa, Sudan, North Africa, Chad, South Sudan