Stephen D. O'Connell | Ideas for India

Stephen D O'Connell
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Stephen D O Connell is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from City University of New York.

Articles By Stephen D O'Connell
Quota policies and career advancement: Evidence from Indian politics
Posted On: 28 Aug 2017

Can quotas for women in politics induce institutional change in the long run? This column examines whether affirmative action for women in Indian local government had spillovers into state and national offices. It finds that reservations in local government may have been responsible for around half of the increase in female candidacy in parliamentary elections since 1991. However, female representation in higher offices remains low.
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How do electricity shortages affect industry in India?
Posted On: 25 Nov 2016

Topics:   Infrastructure

Poor electricity supply is widely recognised as a key impediment to firm growth and productivity. This column finds that average reported level of electricity shortages in India reduces annual plant revenues and producer surplus of the average manufacturing plant by 5-10%. While productivity losses are smaller, shortages distort plant size distribution due to significant economies of scale in generator costs.
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What makes cities more competitive in India?
Posted On: 07 Mar 2014

Topics:   Urbanisation

Policymakers in both developed and developing countries want to make cities more competitive, attract new entrepreneurs, boost economic growth, and promote job creation. This column shows that the two most consistent factors that bring entrepreneurs in manufacturing and services to a district in India are its education and quality of local physical infrastructure.
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India’s spatial disparities: Have big cities become too congested?
Posted On: 17 Jan 2014

Topics:   Urbanisation

A key driver of the Indian economy is its rapidly growing service sector. This column compares the spatial growth pattern of the sector in India and other countries. It is found that while in US and Europe, the service sector is becoming increasing concentrated in medium-sized locations, high-density locations in India such as Mumbai and Chennai continue to attract more service sector jobs, causing congestion.
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Who creates jobs?
Posted On: 02 Aug 2013

Topics:   Jobs

With millions of young people entering the labour market each year, the big question is whether there will be enough jobs for them. But who actually creates these jobs? This column looks at data from India suggesting that young and small firms play a vital role. Policymakers just need to support them.
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What explains gender disparities in economic participation in India?
Posted On: 21 Aug 2012

Topics:   Gender , Jobs

The UN Global Gender Gap data shows that women’s economic participation and opportunity is worse in India than in 95% of all other countries studied. This column attempts to uncover what drives the gender balances of new enterprise in India and suggests measures for promoting women’s entrepreneurship and economic participation.
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