Reforms and Economic Transformation in India

Reforms and Economic Transformation in India

by Jagdish Bhagwati, Arvind Panagariya


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Reforms and Economic Transformation in India is the second volume in the series Studies in Indian Economic Policies. The first volume, India's Reforms: How They Produced Inclusive Growth (OUP, 2012), systematically demonstrated that reforms-led growth in India led to reduced poverty among all social groups. They also led to shifts in attitudes whereby citizens overwhelmingly acknowledge the benefits that accelerated growth has brought them and as voters, they now reward the governments that deliver superior economic outcomes and punish those that fail to do so.

This latest volume takes as its starting point the fact that while reforms have undoubtedly delivered in terms of poverty reduction and associated social objectives, the impact has not been as substantial as seen in other reform-oriented economies such as South Korea and Taiwan in the 1960s and 1970s, and more recently, in China. The overarching hypothesis of the volume is that the smaller reduction in poverty has been the result of slower transformation of the economy from a primarily agrarian to a modern, industrial one. Even as the GDP share of agriculture has seen rapid decline, its employment share has declined very gradually. More than half of the workforce in India still remains in agriculture. In addition, non-farm workers are overwhelmingly in the informal sector. Against this background, the nine original essays by eminent economists pursue three broad themes using firm level data in both industry and services.

The papers in part I ask why the transformation in India has been slow in terms of the movement of workers out of agriculture, into industry and services, and from informal to formal employment. They address what India needs to do to speed up this transformation. They specifically show that severe labor-market distortions and policy bias against large firms has been a key factor behind the slow transformation. The papers in part II analyze the transformation that reforms have brought about within and across enterprises. For example, they investigate the impact of privatization on enterprise profitability. Part III addresses the manner in which the reforms have helped promote social transformation. Here the papers analyze the impact the reforms have had on the fortunes of the socially disadvantaged groups in terms of wage and education outcomes and as entrepreneurs.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199915200
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 11/02/2012
Series: Studies in Indian Economic Policies
Pages: 312
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Jagdish Bhagwati, University Professor at Columbia University and Senior Fellow in International Economics at the Council on Foreign Relations, is a prominent economist. He has made pioneering contributions to the study of development, globalization, international trade, foreign aid, and immigration. He also writes frequently for leading media worldwide. He has served in many advisory roles, including at the GATT as Economic Policy Adviser to Director General Arthur Dunkel and at the UN to Secretary General Kofi Annan on Globalization and on NEPAD Process in Africa. He works with many NGOs, including Human Rights Watch.

Arvind Panagariya is Professor of Economics & Jagdish Bhagwati Professor of Indian Political Economy at Columbia University and a Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. He has written and edited ten books. His last book, India: The Emerging Giant (OUP, 2008) has been described as the 'definitive book on the Indian economy'. Panagariya writes a monthly column in The Economic Times, India's top financial daily.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
Jagdish Bhagwati and Arvind Panagariya

Part I: Reforms and the Transformation within Manufacturing and Services

2. Labor Laws and the Firm Size Distribution in Indian Manufacturing
Rana Hasan and Karl Robert L. Jandoc

3. Complementarity between Organized and Unorganized Manufacturing in India: The Role of Policies and Institutions
Asha Sundaram, Reshad N. Ahsan and Devashish Mitra

4. Services Growth in India: A Look Inside the Black Box
Rajiv Dehejia and Arvind Panagariya

5. Organized Retailing in India: Issues and Outlook
Rajiv Kohli and Jagdish Bhagwati

Part II: Reforms and the Transformation within and across Enterprises

6. Selling the Family Silver to Pay the Grocer's Bill? The Case of Privatization in India
Nandini Gupta

7. Variety In, Variety Out: imported Input and Product Scope Expansion in India
Pinelopi Goldberg, Amit Khandelwal and Nina Pavcnik

8. Reforms and the Competition Environment
Laura Alfaro and Anusha Chari

Part III: Reforms and Social Transformation

9. The Post-reform Narrowing of Inequality Across Castes: Evidence from the States
Viktoria Hnatkovska and Amartya Lahiri

10. Entrepreneurship in Services and Socially Disadvantaged in India
Rajeev Dehejia and Arvind Panagariya

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