Tag: India

China and India are building welfare states at a scale and speed unprecedented in human history

Take a look at this table, from a new paper by Arjan de Haan. It shows the last 15 years of social policy initiatives in China and India, and their breathtaking scale. And here’s a chunk from the accompanying one pager: Though social spending in both countries appears rather low, and many deficits remain in […]

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Take a pause: what do the Uttrakhand floods tell us about India’s development model?

Vanita Suneja, Oxfam India’s Economic Justice Lead, looks at the underlying causes of the devastating floods in Uttrakhand The recent flash floods in Uttrakhand have already claimed around 1000 lives and more than 3000 people are still missing.   One of the worst calamities caused by an extreme weather event in the form of cloud burst […]

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A crucial step in fighting inequality and discrimination: the law to make India’s private schools admit 25% marginalised kids

This guest post comes from Exfam colleague and education activist Swati Narayan  This summer, India missed the historic deadline to implement the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009. This landmark law, the fruit of more than a decade of civil society activism, has many path-breaking clauses. For the first time, it […]

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India’s Middle Class debate continued: should NGOs be looking in the mirror? Guest post from Bipasha Majumder

On my recent trip to India, I discovered some talented bloggers – here’s Bipasha Majumder, Oxfam India’s Communications Officer in Mumbai, writing in a purely personal capacity on the Great Middle Class Debate. She also writes a personal blog. I have had discussions and I have had heated discussions.  Sometimes I have just let the […]

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India’s new middle classes – friends of progress or apolitical mall-rats?

One of the topics that kept coming up during my recent trip with Oxfam India was the role of the rising middle classes. We had a great debate with Aseem Prakash from Jindal University, who is in the middle of a paper on this (I’ll link when it’s published). According to Aseem, different definitions yield numbers […]

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India’s fight for the right to education

Still processing my recent visit to see Oxfam India’s work – posts continue next week with the great debate on India’s middle classes. Education is fine example of the strengths and weaknesses of judicial activism in India. The Right to Education (RTE) Act was passed in 2009, arising out of constitutional amendment in 1999 that redefined […]

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How change happens in India – via the Supreme Court and ‘judicial activism’

With the US going to the polls today, and memories of hanging chads and lawyers swarming like flies round voting stations, it seems like a good time to talk about India’s version of judicial activism, based on my recent visit At a national level, when it comes to rights and poverty, India seems to combine […]

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India’s slums: how change happens and the challenge of urban programming

Got back from a fascinating week visiting Oxfam India last week, so the next few days’ post will be on India, sadly the world leader in poverty (by a long way). One of the areas that Oxfam is keen to develop there is its work on urban poverty, where it already works with migrant labourers, […]

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Building Active Citizenship and Accountability in Asia: case studies from Vietnam and India

Last week I attended a seminar in Bangkok on ‘active citizenship’ in Asia, part of an ‘Asia Development Dialogue’ organized by Oxfam, Chulalongkorn University and the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy and supported by the Rockefeller Foundation. It brought together a diverse group of local mayors, human rights activists and academics, and discussed […]

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Tackling a cinderella issue – lethal indoor pollution

In this guest post, Oxfam’s Ian Bray (left) looks at the latest developments in getting clean cookstoves to the world’s poor (and saving two million lives a year) The recent massive electricity blackout across India received a great deal of media interest and comment. The coverage, with the exception of the ever excellent Onion, masked […]

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Fighting for food security in India

Biraj Swain (right) is Oxfam India’s Campaigns Manager and Co-Editor and author of the IDS-Oxfam India Special Bulletin “Standing on the Threshold: Food Justice in India”, launched in Delhi this week In India, over the past 15 years the debate about food, under a rights-based perspective, has become increasingly complex. Earlier concerns about famines, emergency relief […]

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The state of India – an advocacy masterclass from Amartya Sen and Jean Dreze

Jean Dreze (right) and Amartya Sen (left) are a longstanding partnership that produces brilliant analysis of India’s development path. Their recent piece ‘Putting Growth in its Place’ draws you in with some great questions, and then uses league tables to taunt India’s decision-makers into action – So you think we’re an emerging world power? Think again. We’re […]

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