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Martin Ravallion | Ideas for India

Martin Ravallion
Georgetown University
mr1185@georgetown.edu
Martin Ravallion holds the Edmond D. Villani Chair of Economics at Georgetown University. Prior to joining Georgetown in December 2012, he was Director of the World Bank’s research department, the Development Research Group. He joined the Bank in 1988 and worked in almost all sectors and all regions over the following 24 years. Prior to joining the Bank, Martin was on the faculty of the Australian National University. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the London School of Economics, and has taught economics at LSE, Oxford University, the Australian National University and Princeton University. 

Martin’s main research interests over the last 25 years have concerned poverty and policies for fighting it. He has advised numerous governments and international agencies on this topic, and he has written extensively on this and other subjects in economics, including three books and 200 papers in scholarly journals and edited volumes. He currently serves on the Editorial Boards of ten economics journals, is a Senior Fellow of the Bureau for Research in Economic Analysis of Development, a Founding Council Member of the Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, and a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research. Amongst various prizes and awards, in 2012 he was awarded the John Kenneth Galbraith Prize from the American Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. 

Articles By Martin Ravallion
Poverty reduction in India: Revisiting past debates with 60 years of data
Posted On: 10 Oct 2016

Tags:  

There has been much debate about the poverty impacts of economic growth and structural transformation in developing countries. This column revisits these issues using a newly constructed dataset of poverty measures for India spanning 60 years. There has been a downward trend in poverty measures since 1970, with an acceleration post-1991, despite rising inequality. Post-1991 data suggest stronger inter-sectoral linkages. Urban consumption growth came with gains to both the rural and urban poor. The primary/secondary/tertiary composition of growth has ceased to matter, as all three sectors contributed to poverty reduction.
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MNREGA: Vision and reality
Posted On: 16 Mar 2016

Tags:   MNREGA , Bihar

In this article, Martin Ravallion, Professor of Economics at Georgetown University, contends that the main proximate reason for MNREGA’s disappointing performance is that many people in poor areas of rural India who want work under the scheme have not been able to get it. To match the reality of MNREGA with its grand vision, poor people need to be made more aware of their rights and entitlements under the scheme, and the supply side needs to be more responsive.

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Access to information and the poor
Posted On: 19 Feb 2016

Tags:   IT , MNREGA

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India recently ruled against charging different subscribers different prices for data services. In this article, Martin Ravallion, Edmond D. Villani Chair of Economics at Georgetown University, contends that we certainly need to improve access of the poor to knowledge about public services that can help them, but such efforts should be explicitly targeted at them. Relying on prevailing processes of knowledge diffusion may simply reflect and even reinforce existing inequalities.
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The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act: is it working?
Posted On: 29 Nov 2012


MNREGA is one of the government´s largest flagship schemes, and is the largest job creation programme of its kind in the world. Supporters believe that it is necessary to help rural workers smooth income in times of distress and increase labour market access for marginalised groups, whereas critics argue that it is taking labour from the troubled agricultural sector and doing more harm than good. What does the evidence really tell us - is MNREGA working or would resources be better spent elsewhere?
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Understanding the differing fortunes of poor people in India and China
Posted On: 18 Jul 2012


It is no secret that India and China have both been growing impressively and that the incidence of extreme poverty has been falling. But this column shows that if India’s economic growth had been as inclusive as China’s, poverty would have reduced by twice as much over the past two decades. It argues that India is missing an opportunity if it doesn’t allow its poor to participate more fully in its rapid growth.
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