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A.I. Systems as Digital Public Goods: Exploring the Potential of Open-Source A.I.
Feb 08, 2023

A.I. Systems as Digital Public Goods: Exploring the Potential of Open-Source A.I.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are showing promise in addressing the complex and interrelated challenges facing the world. During the pandemic, for example, AI voice enablement helped in broadcasting advisories in the vernacular and acted as a fact-checking tool. Yet, most AI systems are designed and developed in countries of the Global North. Policymakers in developing economies remain wary of AI systems, especially for use in soci

Africa’s quest for securing COVID-19 vaccines
Mar 24, 2021

Africa’s quest for securing COVID-19 vaccines

The race to secure COVID-19 vaccines has laid bare the inherent inequalities in access to global healthcare, which adversely affects developing popula

Assessing the Impact of Climate Change on Public Health and Nutrition Security
Mar 22, 2024

Assessing the Impact of Climate Change on Public Health and Nutrition Security

Climate change poses a significant risk to global food security. Rising temperatures, extreme weather events, and shifting precipitation patterns impact food production, disrupting food supply chains, increasing food prices, and diminishing food safety. These effects are particularly apparent in developing countries, where vulnerable populations struggle to access nutritious foods and small farmers face financial challenges. Tackling the impacts

Breaking barriers: Gender, health rights and climate change at crossroads
Apr 05, 2024

Breaking barriers: Gender, health rights and climate change at crossroads

Adopting holistic approaches to address the interlinkages between health and other gender-sensitive SDG targets is key to achieving equitable and sust

Bridging global workforce gaps: An Indian perspective
May 31, 2024

Bridging global workforce gaps: An Indian perspective

India’s youthful demographic profile can positively impact the global labour market if strategic efforts are employed

Can Rohingya issue block the development of BIMSTEC?
Jan 15, 2021

Can Rohingya issue block the development of BIMSTEC?

The continuing Rohingya crisis has shown how little the subregion is equipped to deal with such a movement of displaced people from one member state t

Covid-19 Global Vaccination Drive: The Goal of Equity in an Unequal World
May 02, 2022

Covid-19 Global Vaccination Drive: The Goal of Equity in an Unequal World

The Covid-19 vaccination rollout has been slow in many parts of the world, and it might not be inaccurate to say that the newer, more transmissible variants have done a better job at immunising populations than the vaccine. More than 16 months since the global vaccination drive was started, wealthier countries have inoculated vastly higher proportions of their populations compared to the poorer ones. For example, as of late April 2022, the United

Data-driven policy recommendations to strengthen nutrition interventions in India
Sep 28, 2023

Data-driven policy recommendations to strengthen nutrition interventions in India

Data-driven, context-specific, integrated, and holistic policy interventions at the state level are needed to address acute and chronic malnutrition i

Defence as offence: India's struggle with COVID-19
May 03, 2020

Defence as offence: India's struggle with COVID-19

With a very high population density, India has to prevent the virus from reaching vulnerable populations through a systematic approach.

Demographic planning for cities
Sep 08, 2020

Demographic planning for cities

The megacities of India have multiplied their populations way beyond the projections arrived at by population studies undertaken by demographic expert

Early childhood biometrics: A tool to improve healthcare delivery
Jul 01, 2024

Early childhood biometrics: A tool to improve healthcare delivery

Capturing biometrics for children will help achieve Universal Health Coverage by providing greater access to healthcare to children from vulnerable po

Europe’s China dilemma
Jan 07, 2021

Europe’s China dilemma

How should liberal democracies in Europe, each with relatively small populations and split by differing conceptions of national interest, deal with th

Four famines in an interconnected world: What can the G20 do?
Jun 28, 2017

Four famines in an interconnected world: What can the G20 do?

Nearly 20 million people in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen are facing what has been described as the largest food crisis in the world in 70 years. Conflict is the main reason behind these famines, abetted by drought, climate change, poverty, and the existing vulnerability of the people in these countries. Security issues have led to a dramatic decline in agricultural production and have adversely affected the supply and distribution of

From Risk to Resilience: Climate Vulnerability Assessments in India
Aug 22, 2023

From Risk to Resilience: Climate Vulnerability Assessments in India

Climate adaptation has been at the forefront of UN climate negotiations over the past decade, given the increasing frequency of extreme weather events at the global, national, and sub-national levels. Climate vulnerability and risk assessments (VRA) are essential for adaptation planning, as they help identify areas, populations, and systems that are most at-risk from the impacts of climate change. They can also be used as a tool to develop adapta

India and Africa: Charting a Post-COVID19 Future
Jun 25, 2020

India and Africa: Charting a Post-COVID19 Future

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the fragility of healthcare systems and strained economies across the globe. India and countries in Africa have emerged as hotspots due to the dual burden of large populations and weak health infrastructure. This lack of infrastructure, coupled with decreasing investments in healthcare over the years, has left their societies and governments underprepared and potentially overwhelmed by COVID-19. As developing reg

India, Pakistan need to shift focus towards CBMs
Jun 24, 2014

India, Pakistan need to shift focus towards CBMs

India and Pakistan need to begin a dialogue on economic and military relations. It will be a challenge for both countries to balance the provision of security for its populations with the need to create the enabling environment for economic and social development and growth.

Indian subcontinent staring at water shortages, says new study
Mar 08, 2013

Indian subcontinent staring at water shortages, says new study

The Indian subcontinent could be hit by water shortages in few years as increasing populations and growing development demands are placing tremendous pressure on the Indus Basin, according a recently released report, on Indus Basin

Mainstreaming Gender in India-Africa Partnership for Energy Access
Jul 05, 2021

Mainstreaming Gender in India-Africa Partnership for Energy Access

The seventh of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aims to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030. This challenge is acute in the African continent, home to large populations without access to electricity and clean cooking fuel. This brief explores the scope for cooperation between India and Africa in not only achieving SDG 7, but while doing so, also considering the targets set by SDG 5 to

Making cities more inclusive
Apr 27, 2023

Making cities more inclusive

City planning and development agencies must take steps to resolve problems faced by vulnerable urban populations

Managing India’s urban transition in 2021
Jan 04, 2021

Managing India’s urban transition in 2021

In 2021, India’s imperatives include uplifting the lives of marginalised populations, creating mechanisms for people’s participation in civic affa

Modi and Buddhism: Between Cultural and Faith-Based Diplomacy
Nov 30, 2015

Modi and Buddhism: Between Cultural and Faith-Based Diplomacy

India has always been shy of adding a religious tint to its foreign policy. In the last decade, however, the aspiring global power began engaging in what has come to be called 'Buddhist diplomacy' in its outreach to countries in the South, East and Southeast Asia. 􀀫e prime minister is diligently pursuing India's 'Buddhist agenda' and taking it beyond its borders, emphasising the Indian and Hindu links with Buddhism. Concurrently, another Asian

Nepal: Finding a way forward
Jan 25, 2016

Nepal: Finding a way forward

Nepal is no stranger to Constitution drafting, having gone through six such rounds since 1948, with the seventh culminating in September 2015. is recent exercise, however, was unique as it was conducted, for the rst time, without the oversight of the monarchy. Certain populations of Nepali society had specic stakes in a new Constitution. For many of Nepal's marginalised communities such as the Madhes is, for example, the new Constitution oe

Optimising Urban Agriculture: A Pathway to Food Security in India
Aug 17, 2023

Optimising Urban Agriculture: A Pathway to Food Security in India

As global and urban populations continue to grow, and climate change threatens food security, it is imperative that cities—often the largest food consumers—contribute to its production through urban agriculture. Urban agriculture comprises food and non-food products grown for self-consumption or sale. Entrepreneurs, non-governmental organisations, and citizens worldwide are adopting new technologies to optimise production amid space c

Perspectives on SARS-CoV-2 strains
May 29, 2020

Perspectives on SARS-CoV-2 strains

SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the ongoing pandemic, is changing as it spreads throughout the world. However, the assertions about a more aggressive strain spreading across human populations is merely conjecture at this point. It is necessary to conduct rigorous studies that couple clinical data (such as patient features and outcomes) with changes in the virus, as well as laboratory studies that test the effect of mutations on the ability

Promoting Principles-Based Use of Technology in Humanitarian Assistance
Aug 16, 2023

Promoting Principles-Based Use of Technology in Humanitarian Assistance

The application of emerging technologies in humanitarian assistance has increased in recent years, and they have proven effective in delivering life-saving interventions to populations in need. In a fast-changing technological landscape, the use of such tools is only expected to increase further. At the same time, however, the use of technologies brings certain challenges, such as misuse of data and the spread of misinformation. This brie

Results of global democratic ratings
Apr 07, 2021

Results of global democratic ratings

Countries endowed with small populations, large geographical area, and greater richness enjoy the luxury of practicing the details of democracy at lei

SDGs and Structural Vulnerabilities: The Case of BIMSTEC Countries
Feb 21, 2022

SDGs and Structural Vulnerabilities: The Case of BIMSTEC Countries

This paper studies the case of the countries of BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) to investigate if progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) plays an instrumental role in addressing structural vulnerabilities. It finds that it does. Despite improvements in certain SDGs such as increasing per-capita income levels, improving healthcare, and providing universal

Sedentary Behaviour and COVID-19 Risk
Aug 11, 2023

Sedentary Behaviour and COVID-19 Risk

India's second COVID-19 wave was marked by a daily surge in incident cases and a high prevalence of severe forms of the novel coronavirus. COVID-19–related studies on Indian populations have focused on aspects like seroprevalence, estimating the peak of infections, and vaccine efficacy. However, other lifestyle factors, such as activity levels, are of significance and can broaden our understanding of COVID-19. Across the world, the pandemic lif

Social Marginalisation in Urban India and the Role of the State
Sep 15, 2023

Social Marginalisation in Urban India and the Role of the State

Urban inequality is a blight experienced by many cities, even in the developed world.In developing countries like India, these social and economic inequalities become even morepronounced, with living conditions in certain populations crossing the line to the abysmal. Inthese cities, agencies responsible for addressing welfare concerns are unable to do so, as theythemselves grapple with a host of challenges. This paper argues that any positive tra

Solid Waste Management in Urban India: Imperatives for Improvement
Nov 19, 2020

Solid Waste Management in Urban India: Imperatives for Improvement

Across India, existing systems for the collection, transportation and disposal of solid waste are mired in chaos. The problem is more acute in the urban areas, where rapidly growing populations generate increasingly larger quantities of solid waste that urban local bodies (ULBs) are unable to manage effectively. Improper management of solid waste poses risks to the environment and public health. This paper dissects the state of solid waste manage

Tech in Pandemic Response, But Many Left Behind: Lessons from Africa
Feb 02, 2023

Tech in Pandemic Response, But Many Left Behind: Lessons from Africa

As industries slowed to a near halt in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the digital economy received a boost—especially from consumers forced to rely on virtual means to meet their needs. Businesses turned to the virtual workspace, adopting new productivity tools to retain their workforce. This brief studies the case of Africa, where tech played a role in pandemic response, and e-commerce players reported increases in orders and custo

Technology and Climate Change: Innovation and Partnerships for Transformational Change
Sep 13, 2023

Technology and Climate Change: Innovation and Partnerships for Transformational Change

The world is facing a climate-change challenge that requires nothing short of atechnological revolution to address. Yet the current patterns of technology development anddiffusions are not transformative enough; nor are they happening at a pace, rapid enough.Actions at multiple levels engaging different actors are needed to reduce emissions whilemeeting the developmental needs of the global south. This paper summarises the mostinnovative ideas s

The  Uphill Climb to Maternal and Child Nutrition in Northeast India
Nov 07, 2023

The Uphill Climb to Maternal and Child Nutrition in Northeast India

The number of malnourished children in India has increased significantly between the time of the National Family Health Survey (NFHS)-4 (2015-16) and the fifth round (2019-2020), and the progress in the first half of the decade has been reversed. This paper tells the story of the Northeast region of India, where malnutrition is worse than the country average. It examines the policy landscape in the region, evaluates current programmes and initiat

The Enduring Problem of Illegal Constructions in India’s Cities
Jul 14, 2021

The Enduring Problem of Illegal Constructions in India’s Cities

India’s rising urbanisation in recent years has triggered unbridled construction activities to meet the needs of the growing populations in these cities. Not all of these constructions abide by existing laws, however, leading to adverse consequences on governance systems, the environment, people’s health, transportation services, and overall citizen well-being. In extreme cases, illegal constructions have resulted in loss of lives and propert

The future of social protection: Is falling through the cracks the new normal?
Jan 30, 2020

The future of social protection: Is falling through the cracks the new normal?

While social protection coverage has increased in many parts of the world, it is evident that many countries, both developed and developing, struggle

The G20 in a Post-COVID19 World: Bridging the Skills Gaps
Nov 12, 2020

The G20 in a Post-COVID19 World: Bridging the Skills Gaps

The COVID-19 pandemic is transforming the world of work. As new occupations are emerging in this digitised landscape, the skills and competencies required for jobs are evolving as well. This brief examines the skills gaps that persist across the G20 countries, and argues that they will need to adapt their education and training mechanisms to the changing skills requirements. Although nearly all presidencies of the G20 forum have prioritised youth

The learning epidemic: A case for focused protection in India
Aug 03, 2023

The learning epidemic: A case for focused protection in India

By implementing focused protection instead of lockdowns, learning epidemics as seen during the COVID-19 period could be avoided in the future

The need to rethink skilling India
Dec 07, 2017

The need to rethink skilling India

The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) must account for the possibility of interstate migration, rapid urbanisation and possible changes in the social fabric as populations react to new job opportunities.

The zero-poverty destination comes closer
Jul 10, 2018

The zero-poverty destination comes closer

Much needs to be done and our destination is still several countries away — the 73 million Indians living in extreme poverty today add up to more than the populations of Thailand, France and the UK.

Towards Universal Access to Clean Cooking Fuels and Technologies: The Role of Policy, National Incomes, and Social Behaviour
Aug 14, 2023

Towards Universal Access to Clean Cooking Fuels and Technologies: The Role of Policy, National Incomes, and Social Behaviour

Goal seven of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) commits the international community to providing access to clean cooking fuels and technologies to all by 2030. Progress has been slow, however, and in about 40 of the UN’s 189 member countries for which data is available, more that 80 percent of the populations continue to lack such access. Using case studies, this brief analyses the role of a country’s policies, i

Trans-Border Migration: Bridging the Gap between State and Human Security
Apr 26, 2021

Trans-Border Migration: Bridging the Gap between State and Human Security

Cross-border migration poses security challenges for the modern nation-state, as the influx of populations exert massive pressures on a country’s resources and governance ecosystems. The undocumented migrants, for their part, not only struggle for their livelihood but often face fundamental crises of identity and belonging. Using the case of India’s eastern borders, this paper problematises the phenomenon of migration against the dich

Understanding the risks posed by COVID-19: A Public Health perspective
May 24, 2023

Understanding the risks posed by COVID-19: A Public Health perspective

Four months since the outbreak of COVID-19, some vital unknowns about the pandemic remain, including IFR (Infection Fatality Rate) and immunity from reinfection. A clearer understanding of the risks posed by COVID-19, informed by science and data in the Indian context, will help the country in mustering an effective strategy to hurdle the crisis. The government must undertake mass antibody testing and scale up healthcare capacity across the count

Urban densities and the Covid-19 pandemic: Upending the sustainability myth of global megacities
May 04, 2020

Urban densities and the Covid-19 pandemic: Upending the sustainability myth of global megacities

High-density urban agglomerations may be sustainable in terms of the economies of scale their populations provide. Yet, as proven by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, these same urban spaces are nearly defenceless in times of unprecedented disease outbreaks. A pandemic poses many risks to the millions who live in dense megacities, whether in wealthy countries or developing ones. The sheer density of the population of these cities provides an ideal e

Water for Indian Cities: Government Practices and Policy Concerns
Jul 31, 2023

Water for Indian Cities: Government Practices and Policy Concerns

The demand for basic infrastructure and services in Indian cities has increased phenomenally due to rapidly growing populations. Such unmet demands often adversely affect the quality of urban life, the economic productivity, as well as the process of sustainable development. The main purpose of this brief is to highlight the problems involved in improving access to water supply in Indian cities faced with a severe water shortage crisis. A case st

Water supply in Delhi: Five key issues
Jun 08, 2020

Water supply in Delhi: Five key issues

Massive populations in many parts of the world, including in India, continue to grapple with lack of access to clean and safe water. This paper studies the case of Delhi. It describes the conditions under which water is produced and supplied to domestic consumers in Delhi and explains the capacity of the water and sewerage agency to discharge its duties. The analysis finds challenges in five aspects related to water supply in Delhi: quantity; qua

क्या जनसंख्या के कारण जलवायु परिवर्तन हो रहा है: मिथक या हक़ीक़त?
Jul 19, 2022

क्या जनसंख्या के कारण जलवायु परिवर्तन हो रहा है: मिथक या हक़ीक़त?

क्या आबादी बढ़ने और कार्बन डाइऑक्साइड में वृद्धि के बीच �

विश्व जनसंख्या दिवस #2022: भारत की बढ़ती आबादी पर अंकुश ज़रूरी
Jul 14, 2022

विश्व जनसंख्या दिवस #2022: भारत की बढ़ती आबादी पर अंकुश ज़रूरी

व्यापक जागरूकता प्रसार के साथ ठोस नीतिगत पहलें अधिक आबादी और स्वास्थ्य के बढ़ते खतरे के दुश्चक्र को तोड़ने में मददगार हो सकती हैं.

विश्व जनसंख्या दिवस #2022: भारत की बढ़ती आबादी पर अंकुश ज़रूरी
Jul 14, 2022

विश्व जनसंख्या दिवस #2022: भारत की बढ़ती आबादी पर अंकुश ज़रूरी

व्यापक जागरूकता प्रसार के साथ ठोस नीतिगत पहलें अधिक आबादी और स्वास्थ्य के बढ़ते खतरे के दुश्चक्र को तोड़ने में मददगार हो सकती हैं.