Productivity
 
Do the poor need genetically modified crops?
Milind Murugkar
Posted on: 22 Nov 2013

Field trials of a few genetically modified crops were recently put on hold by the Environment Ministry. This article asserts that the decision reflects an ideological resistance to and suspicion about the technology, which is at odds with the government’s stated policy of using GM crops for the benefit of rural poor. It argues that GM crops can go a long way in helping farmers by improving crop yields.
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Indian agriculture: How to feed more people with fewer resources
Gareth Price , Ira Sharma , Ashwini Kumar Swain
Posted on: 05 Jul 2016

While agriculture in India has achieved grain self-sufficiency, it has become cereal-centric, regionally-biased and resource-intensive. In this article, Swain, Price and Sharma discuss the rising resource intensity in Indian agriculture and its implications for agricultural sustainability, productivity and future food production. They explore government initiatives to address the situation and suggest a strategy to increase production with fewer resources.
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Nobel insights: When it comes to contracts, what’s obvious may not be optimal
Rohini Somanathan
Posted on: 18 Oct 2016

In a tribute to Oliver Hart and Bengt Holmström, recipients of this year’s Nobel prize in Economics, Rohini Somanathan, Professor of Economics at Delhi School of Economics, outlines their contributions.
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Nobel prize in Economics 2016: The economy as a nexus of contracts
Maitreesh Ghatak
Posted on: 19 Oct 2016
Tags:   management

An important line of research in microeconomics has tried to explain how the economic institutions that underpin the ‘invisible hand of the market’ actually work. The specific economic institution that Hart and Holmström focus on is contracts. In a tribute to the Nobel laureates, Maitreesh Ghatak, Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics, discusses the working and importance of contract theory.
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India’s disputed ruling on pharmaceuticals and patents
Arvind Subramanian
Posted on: 10 Apr 2013

On April 1 2013, the Supreme Court of India rejected the attempt by Novartis, the Swiss pharmaceutical company, to patent a new version of the leukemia drug Glivec. The verdict follows previous rulings that granted compulsory licenses to an Indian generic drug manufacturer for a kidney cancer drug (Nexavar) patented by Bayer. This article discusses five important questions raised by these rulings.
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Using science to improve Indian agriculture
Robert S. Zeigler
Posted on: 26 Jun 2015

Five years ago, the Indian government imposed a ‘temporary’ moratorium on the commercial release of Bt brinjal – a genetically modified crop - even after it had passed through the due regulatory processes. In this article, Robert S Zeigler, a plant pathology expert, outlines the benefits of transgenic crops and emphasises the need to expedite their adoption in India.
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Fast breeder reactors and the slow progress of India’s nuclear programme
M.V. Ramana
Posted on: 16 Aug 2016

Breeder reactors have always underpinned the claims of India’s Department of Atomic Energy about generating large quantities of electricity. The first Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor was expected to start sustaining a chain reaction back in 2010, but the reactor is massively delayed, taking more than twice the expected period. In this article, M.V. Ramana, a physicist at Princeton University, outlines the history of missed targets and contends that these reactors are best regarded as failed technology, in India and elsewhere.
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