This book discusses the policies to achieve inclusive growth in India and realize the demographic dividend, which will end by 2040 when India will become an aging society. The book’s theoretical framework is based on the capability approach discussed in the first chapter. The rest is empirical, and is focused on specific problems. India is the world’s fastest growing large economy, but jobs are not growing equally rapidly. Human capital levels of India’s youth workforce remain worrying and the largely informal workforce is not covered by social insurance. Universal elementary education, despite the Right to Education Act 2009, is yet to be achieved. Health outcomes have improved only slowly over the years. Furthermore, sanitation still remains a very serious problem. As an economist and former policy-maker, the author discusses specific policies to address these problems, well beyond what is currently being practised. The book also deals with the governance issues that need to be addressed if growth has to be inclusive.
“This is a topic of fundamental importance to the future development path of India. The script is exceptionally clearly structured and sharply written. ….the level of analysis in this volume is far above other analyses of this complex topic. This book is likely to be widely referred to and become a standard reference for debates about India’s labour market and employment policies, and their relationship to growth and social justice in India.”
— Peter Nolan, Director of Development Economics, University of Cambridge
“This excellent book combines analytical sharpness and policy sensitivity to tackle the central issue of how to make best use of the demographic dividend for inclusive development. It will be of interest to analysts and policy makers alike.”
— Ravi Kanbur, T.H. Lee Professor of World Affairs, International Professor of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University
“Mehrotra addresses each welfare dimension with crisp histories of programmes that were introduced for each area. Diagnosis flows naturally from these two elements and translates effectively into practical policy recommendations. This book will become a standard reference for anyone wanting to understand why things are the way they are in India's welfare state and what must be done about it.”
— Subir Gokarn, Former Deputy Governor, Reserve Bank of India and Director, Brookings Institute India
“It is a highly topical subject: why did India fail to translate its fast growth into welfare for the poor? This is a thoroughly professional piece of work by a through and through professional. The book is basically empirical, although it has a theoretical foundation in the work of Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum.”
— Ajit Singh, Professor Emeritus in Economics, University of Cambridge
“Santosh Mehrotra has been on the inside, and this adds value to his project, apart from giving him access to materials. To be fair, he is not presenting as a spokesperson for the Planning Commission, the Government, and least of all for the freakish outlier interpretations of the Indian neo-liberal economic regime.”
— Ashwani Saith, Professor Emeritus, Institute of Social Studies, The Hague
“It is a hard hitting empirical book testing and largely validating the theoretical underpinnings of the importance of the so called ‘softer’ aspects of development practice and policy. The demographic dividend, skilling policies, gender, children are all put together. While people like me saw the Indian advantage over countries like the US, China and Japan, Mehrotra also correctly spells out the challenges of the dividend.”
— Yoginder K. Alagh, Former Vice Chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru University
List of Tables and Figures
Part 1: Growth, Employment and Inclusion
Chapter 1: Capability-centred Approach to Inclusive Growth: Theoretical Framework and Empirical Reality
Chapter 2: Sustaining Economic Growth
Chapter 3: Ensuring Higher Agricultural Growth and the Revival of Rural India
Chapter 4: Addressing the Employment-related Paradoxes of Economic Growth
Chapter 5: Public Finance: Increasing Fiscal Capacity
Chapter 6: Skill Development: Finding New Financing Mechanisms to Take Vocational Education and Training to Scale
Chapter 7: A Common Platform for Skill Development: Implementing the National Skills Qualification Framework
Part 2: Human Capital Formation
Chapter 8: Addressing Capability Deprivation of Women for Inclusive Growth
Chapter 9: From the Right to Education to the Right to Learning
Chapter 10: Food Security, Nutrition and Health: Policy Dilemmas and Interlinked Challenges
Chapter 11: Redesigning Sanitation Programmes to Make India Free from Open Defaecation
Part 3: Building a System of Social Protection
Chapter 12: Minimising Leakages in Welfare Programmes: How to Identify the Poor Correctly?
Chapter 13: Needed a Social Insurance System for Unorganised Workers below the Poverty Line
Chapter 14: Introducing Cash Transfers: A Proposal for a Minimum Income Guarantee and Some CCTs
Part 4: Governance
Chapter 15 Two Pre-requisites for Optimum Governance Deep Fiscal Decentralisation and the Bureaucracy's Ability to Learn.
Chapter 16: Addressing Left-wing Extremism: Encourage Peace to Secure Development - or the Way Round?
Santosh Mehrotra is Professor of Economics at the Centre for Informal Sector and Labour Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University. He was earlier Director General of the National Institute for Labour Economics Research, the only research institute of the Planning Commission of India. Prof Mehrotra also headed the Rural Development Division and then the Development Policy Division of the Commission. He was the team leader of the India Human Development Report 2011 and was the chief economist of the Human Development Report, New York. Professor Mehrotra's research has been translated into French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Portuguese.