Publications & Resources

Our faculty, students and researchers work together everyday to contribute to a better world by grappling with urgent problems we are facing in India. We conduct rigorous work to produce high quality learning resources and publications to contribute to public discourse and social change. Here, we feature a sample from our work for everyone to access. You can explore featured resources, policies, and the latest publications from the University. 

To explore all the work of our University, please visit our publications repository.

  • CSE Working Paper 51
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    Abstract

    Small manufacturing firms are considered to be engines of growth and job creation. While most research on small firms focuses on formal sector units, in India informal sector units far outnumber the formal. This is true even for manufacturing units employing 5 to 49 workers, which constitute only 5% of all unorganised units, but in absolute numbers are nine times more numerous than organised units in the same size class. Such firms have the potential to contribute to structural transformation but their capacities vis-a-vis formal firms are not well understood. To address this, the researchers create a unit-level dataset combining Annual Survey of Industries data for organised (formal) units with the National Sample Survey data on unorganised (informal) units. They also discuss problems involved in this exercise and some ways to deal with them. They find that matching organised and unorganised units on observable characteristics reduces the labour productivity differences between them to around 25 percent. The researchers discuss some policy implications of their results.

    Authors:

    • Amit Basole
    • Dimple Chopde
    • Paaritosh Nath

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  • June Cover Page Of Newsletter
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    Abstract

    This is a monthly newsletter published by Azim Premji University, as a part of Forests of Life, a climate awareness festival celebrating forests — a quest and yatra of young people from across different parts to engage with the youth of this country. The editions of this newsletter cover diverse aspects of forests — ecology, biodiversity, and climate change impacts; informative and unique titbits about forests, their resources, communities, and conservationists; national parks, wildlife sanctuaries; puzzles, quizzes, activity corners for children, and much more!

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  • Pathshala Issue 16 Cover
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      Abstract

      पाठशाला भीतर और बाहर के सोलहवें अंक में शिक्षा के कुछ बुनियादी मसलों यथा शिक्षा में समावेशन, शुरुआती भाषा शिक्षण के पहलुओं, सामाजिक विज्ञान शिक्षण व नैतिक समझ के विकास आदि पर कक्षा के अनुभवों से उभरे व उन अनुभवों के विश्लेषण को समेटे हुए लेख हैं। चूँकि यह लेख कक्षा से अनुभवों से उभरे हैं, अतः यह उनके यथार्थ, संभावनाओं व चुनौतियों को सामने रखते हैं।

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    • Religions 14 00742 with cover page 0001
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      Abstract

      Postcolonial democratic deepening brings new challenges to religion as a social imaginary in India. Increasing cultural differentiation and pluralisation are countered by fundamentalisation, but also challenge existing minority/​multicultural imaginations. Religion, as the overarching identity category, has come under scrutiny given the politicization of caste among Muslims, who form the country’s most significant religious minority. Through social-justice and anti-caste politics in the 1990s, lowered-caste Muslims started to enact a new identity named Pasmanda, which means those who have been left behind”. The Pasmanda discourse emphasises internal heterogeneities and hegemonies and pluralises the Muslim”. It thus ruptures the imaginary of Muslims as a homogeneous minority in a culturally diverse country and problematises the majority – minority framework. An important site of contestation is the reservation (quota) policy in public employment, education, and the legislature. While privileged-caste Muslims generally prefer a quota based on religion, the lowered-caste Pasmanda Muslims increasingly mobilise for a caste-based quota, thus challenging systems of recognition and redistribution.

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    • Article

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      Increasing community and parental connection with schools is a widely advocated means of improving levels of student learning and the quality and accountability of education systems across South Asia. This paper draws on a mixed-methods study of accountability relations in education in the Indian states of Rajasthan and Bihar. It explores two questions: what formal platforms exist to enhance connections between socially disadvantaged families and the schools serving them; and (how) do they influence engagement with student learning? It finds that various platforms have proliferated across public, low-cost private and non-government schools. But, while they promote enrolment attendance and monitoring, a substantive focus on student learning is empirically demonstrated to be missing everywhere. The paper argues that an apparently surprising similarity of (dis)connection is located in system features that are common across school types, locations and social structures. It proposes that this is a field’ in which connection, facilitated by various platforms, is performed according to bureaucratised norms of accountability that even pervade family and community responses. Seeing this as a socially constituted field’ that constrains meaningful discussion of learning across schooling provision for disadvantaged families contribute new insight for accountability-focused reforms in education.

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    • Chapter in a Book

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      Abstract

      This chapter discusses collective and multiactor interventions by local communities in Bengaluru, in conserving urban ecological commons — specifically, urban lakes — which provides a range of services to residents, as well as protecting the overall resilience of the city. Bengaluru, which once had an agrarian ecological landscape nourished by a large network of interconnected rainwater harvesting structures — tanks or lakes, has now grown to a megacity. Rapid urbanization has been accompanied by conversion of many of these lakes into other forms of land use, with a decline in the functioning of lakes and their surrounding reliant socio-ecological systems. With the import of piped water to the city since the early 20th century, lakes lost much of their perceived relevance for policymakers. Waste discharge and sewage eventually polluted most of the lakes and choked the overflow channels that connected lakes along a topographic gradient, reducing the flow of water. In recent years, spurred by a resurgent awareness of the importance of lakes, a growing number of civic and community efforts have resulted in lake restoration, in collaboration with the Government.

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    • Magazine

      i wonder… Issue 8

      in Azim Premji University

      I wonder Issue 8 June 2022
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      Authors

        Abstract

        What role do chemical experiences’ play in helping children grasp the particulate nature of matter and use this idea to explain observed phenomena?

        How do we use the art and aesthetics of lithography to introduce children to chemical reactions? What skills would children learn from this multisensorial and fun approach to science? 

        Why is it important for teachers to trace the history of evolving definitions of elements and atoms, and communicate the conditional nature of their validity? 

        Can we use poetry to teach chemistry? How would it change the ways in which students engage with science? 

        Join us in exploring these questions in three sections of our latest issue – Our Chemical World, I am a Scientist, and Snippets. 

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      • Pathshala Issue 12 Cover
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          Abstract

          पाठशाला भीतर और बाहर, जून 2022 के अंक में शिक्षणशास्त्र और कक्षा अनुभवों पर दिलचस्प लेख हैं। ये लेख शिक्षा की समसामयिक चुनौतियाँ और उनसे पार पाने के उपाय सामने लाते हैं। इस अंक का संवाद शिक्षा में कोरोना के बाद की चुनौतियों को सामने लाते हुए इनसे आगे बढ़ने की राह सुझाता है। इसमें जातिगत और भाषा की विविधता को सम्बोधित करते, समावेशन और सहभागिता के परिप्रेक्ष्य आधारित लेखों के अलावा एक शिक्षक का साक्षात्कार भी शामिल है। इस साक्षत्कार में शिक्षक ने अपने जीवन के समृद्ध अनुभवों को रखा है, जिनमें उसकी शैक्षिक यात्रा, खुशियों, चुनौतियों और सीखों की जानकारी मिलती है। 

          The June 22 Issue of Pathshala carries interesting articles on pedagogy and classroom experiences. They bring out contemporary challenges and ways to overcome them. The Samwad is also focused around the post corona challenges and way forward. Apart from perspective articles dealing with inclusion and participation involving caste and language diversity, the teacher interview brings out the rich life experience of a teacher who traces her journey, joys, challenges and learnings. 

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        • Magazine

          i wonder… Issue 6

          in Azim Premji University

          Iwonder june2021
          Published
          Authors

            Abstract

            Does the teaching and learning of science change when we give importance to relationships with people, other beings, and the places they inhabit? 

            How do we use an exploration of water to help children connect basic science concepts with personal experiences and pressing environmental issues? 

            Can observing, exploring, and working in their natural environment offer children and teachers the opportunity to cultivate an intuitive understanding of the nature and process of science? 

            What personal choices and simple actions in our everyday lives can help us begin engaging with climate change? 

            Join us in exploring these questions in the theme section of this issue — Teaching as if the Earth Matters.

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          • Pathshala Issue 8 Cover
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              Abstract

              इस अंक में 16 लेख हैं और इनमें अधिकांश लेख पढ़ना सीखने और उसमे रुचि पैदा करने पर आधारित हैं। शिक्षकों और शिक्षक‑प्रशिक्षकों द्वारा लिखे गए कक्षा अनुभवों और शिक्षणशास्त्र पर आधारित लेख, शिक्षण में बच्चों की भागीदारी बढ़ाने के तरीकों के विभिन्न पहलुओं को सामने लाते हैं। बच्चों को पढ़ना सीखने और उनकी लिखित अभिव्यक्ति विकसित करने में मदद के लिए, स्कूल व कक्षा में क्या किया जा सकता है, इसके बारे में विचार देते हैं। किताबों और पुस्तकालय से, डायरी लेखन व दीवार पत्रिका से, पढ़ने-लिखने की सामग्री से और बातचीत व कहानी कहने से सीखने में मिलने वाली मदद के विवरण भी इन लेखों में मिलते हैं। इस अंक का संवाद भी शुरूआती पढ़ना, लिखना, साक्षरता, संख्यात्मक और गणितीय ज्ञान पर केन्द्रित है। लेख यह भी दर्शाते हैं कि जब बच्चे पाठ्यपुस्तकों के अध्यायों पर काम कर रहे हों तो उन्हें बात करने और अपने विचार व्यक्त करने की पूरी आज़ादी होना चाहिए। 

              शिक्षक के साथ साक्षात्कार महामारी के दौरान बच्चों के साथ जुड़े रहने के प्रयासों का विश्लेष्ण प्रस्तुत करता है। एक अन्य लेख महामारी के दौरान बच्चों के अपने स्कूल के साथ सम्बन्धों की जटिलता को सामने लाता है।

              This eighth issue of Pathshala carries 16 articles. Learning to read and write is the foundation of all further learning. Most of the articles in this issue are focussed on learning to read and building of interest in it. The Samvaad is also focussed on ‘ Early reading, writing, literacy, numeracy and other mathematical knowledge’. Based on classroom experience and pedagogy the articles written by teachers and teacher educators bring out various aspects of the manner of engaging children and give ideas about what can be done in the school and in the classroom for helping children to learn read and develop their written expression. The articles bring out the changing role of the reader at different stages of the reading process, how working with the library and books, diary writing, Deewar Patrika (Wall magazine), availability of material to read and write, conversation and storytelling etc. help in learning and how peer learning, conversations with and among children help in this process. They point out that children should also be given freedom to talk and express when they are working with chapters from textbooks. The interview with the teacher presents an analysis of the efforts to continue to engage with children during the pandemic. One article of a different genre brings out the complexity of the relationship of children to their school as exposed by the pandemic.

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            • Screenshot 32
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                Abstract

                This booklet is based on a two-year study of domestic workers conducted by faculty at Azim Premji University.

                Please share it with friends and family so that more people and employers are aware that domestic workers need to be accorded their due rights and be treated with dignity.

                The focus of the research is the work and lives of domestic workers’ (henceforth, DW) in Bangalore, especially their struggles to form collectives as part of their attempt to transform their subjectivities from servant’ to worker’, and improve their life and work situations. Domestic work is precarious work constituting a large part of India’s informal economy. It exists within a political economic context signaled by rising incomes of urban middle and upper classes and the existence of a steady supply of working-class women (from mostly stigmatised castes but across all religions) ready for domestic work. It is also enabled by a cultural-ideological context signaled by the preference to engage DWs as a normalised cultural marker for upward mobility. Our research demonstrates the struggles of DWs, the dilemmas and obstacles they negotiate for their empowerment. It focuses on the collective actions of DWs in their workplaces, their families and neighborhoods, and within unions and labour-NGOs engaged in organising DWs for formalisation” of work, demands for a decent’ wage and work conditions, and innovations in the form and content of their collective rights.

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              • Pandemic informality and vulnerability
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                We analyze findings from a large-scale survey of around 5000 respondents across 12 states of India to study the impact of COVID-19 pandemic containment measures (lockdown) on employment, livelihoods, food security and access to relief measures. We find a massive increase in unemployment, an equally dramatic fall in earnings among informal workers, large increases in food insecurity, depletion of savings and patchy coverage of relief measures. Two-thirds of our respondents lost work. The few informal workers who were still employed during the lockdown experienced more than a fifty percent drop in their earnings. Even among regular wage workers, half received either no salary or reduced salary during the lockdown. Almost eighty percent of surveyed households experienced a reduction in their food intake and a similar percentage of urban households did not have enough money to pay next month’s rent. We also use a set of logistic regressions to identify how employment loss and food intake varies with individual and household level characteristics. We find that migrants and urban Muslims are significantly worse off with respect to employment and food security. Among employment categories, self-employed workers were more food secure. The Public Distribution System (PDS) system was seen to have the widest reach among social security measures. However, even under PDS, 16 percent of vulnerable urban households did not have access to government rations. Further, half of the respondents reported not receiving any cash transfers (state or central). We conclude that much more is needed in the way of direct fiscal support that has been announced thus far by state and central governments in India.

                Authors:

                • Surbhi Kesar
                • Rosa Abraham
                • Rahul Lahoti
                • Paaritosh Nath
                • Amit Basole

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              • Magazine

                i wonder…

                in Azim Premji University

                I wonder June 2016 Cover
                Published
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                  Abstract

                  In Interactions’ & Emerging Trends in Biology’, explore articles on chemical ecology, the common cold, fundamental forces, gut microbes in health & disease, & memory. In The Science Lab’, discover simple classroom activities to teach photosynthesis & daytime astronomy. In Annals of History’, trace the journey of microscopy from the simple magnifying glass to the powerful electron microscopes & easy-to-assemble foldscopes available today. Discover the writer & physician Oliver Sacks through his fascination for the human brain, bikes and stories in Biography of a Scientist’. Enjoy our pull-out poster on Ten things you didn’t know about – Bones’ & nature-based activity sheets – Chirp Chirp’, Hibiscus Tales’, Bark Bites’ & All about Ants’! Or browse through our pocket-size pictorial guide to common butterflies!

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                • WIP2
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                    Abstract

                    Malnutrition levels in India remain a major public health challenge. According to the fourth round of the District Level Household Survey (DLHS4, 2012 – 13), almost 30 percent of all children under the age of 5 are underweight in most states. This is a serious cause for concern for several reasons: low weight-for-age has been associated with a range of disadvantages, including a higher risk of dying due to several disease conditions among young children; changes in the autonomic nervous system; higher risk of hypertension and insulinresistance in adulthood; adverse impacts on brain development, cognitive ability and school achievement; and behavioural problems such as anxiety and hostility later in life.

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