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Nirvikar Singh

Articles By Nirvikar Singh

156 Articles

India and the Doing Business index

The demise of the index is a good time to take stock of the true state of what it is like to run a business in India

The current MD of the IMF has come under fire for her role in these issues when she was at the Bank.

What India’s global strategy must be

India’s goal must be to use Quad collaboration to build world-class research universities, and use these to grow an innovation ecosystem

Japan and Australia are not irrelevant in this sphere, but they are minnows compared to the US.

Rescuing education in India, starting from basic digital infrastructure

The spread of smartphones in India has hidden the fact that broadband internet access, wired and wireless, is far short of what the country needs for distance learning

The starting point has to be the basic digital infrastructure.

Pathways to innovation in India: India’s policy approaches to manufacturing have failed to create the tipping points innovation needs

The digital world may provide the most promising routes to Indian entrepreneurial success in the 21st century, but we know that the range of new technologies and profitable innovations is much larger than just software.

artificial intelligence

What’s missing in India’s growth strategy?

The policy solution for India is not just passive opening up by lowering trade barriers; we also have to confidently integrate into the global economy

Inclusive growth is sustainable growth, as many large companies will recognise, if they are nudged towards that conclusion.

Improving India’s innovation system

India must tap more into the global pool of human capital, in education and in R&D

And trade openness both creates competitive pressure for innovation, and improves the flow of ideas across international borders.

Building for a growth recovery

Integrating into the global economy can provide economies of scale and spur innovation

The gigantic Sagarmala programme, consisting of hundreds of projects costing trillions of rupees, is a good example of the difficulties going forward.

Financing India’s Growth: What should be on policymakers’ minds

Competitive technology-based platforms, combined with strong rules for transparency, will allow financial intermediation to become growth-enabling

But probably much more will be needed to provide needed financial grease for the wheels of the Indian economy.

Recovering from the pandemic

Adapting will require new investment, but the resources needed are far from prohibitive

india GDP growth india GDP

Democracy in America

The first objective of the changes to the electoral process, which has elements of racism and class discrimination, is to make it difficult for certain types of voters to exercise their franchise. The second is to undermine t

A lifelong attitude of social responsibility

Sunil was always ready to offer uncomfortable truths to those in power. He had perfected the art of doing so in a manner that was relatively easy for those being criticised to read and perhaps accept

Sunil was always ready to offer uncomfortable truths to those in power. (File image)

The ‘flailing state’ revisited: States and city govts handled Covid pandemic better than Centre

While the flailing state is usually defined as a sound and functional head and dysfuctional limbs, this time, it played out in the reverse. The state and city governments did a better job of handling the pandemic than the Cen

Learning by doing builds the needed human and organisational capital at the local level, where it has not been allowed to develop.

Riding the unicorns

Unicorns are a sign that India need not be following a path that retreats to the old economy of a few powerful, politically-connected business houses thriving behind trade barriers, and stifling competition

Right now, too many small and medium firms are dependent on a handful of large conglomerates for business, and they end up being squeezed and even starved by the giants. Competition can help throughout the value chain, and not just improve the lot of final consumers.

India at a crossroads: Addressing an issue much larger than academic freedom or cultural nationalism

Broader empirical evidence suggests that democracy is more supportive of economic growth, though one hears arguments that authoritarianism pays off through economic growth

Arvind Subramanian Image Reuters

Designing India’s reform agenda

Land and labour reforms are important, so one can’t fault successive governments for trying to tackle these. But, the binding constraints on the growth of industry in India seem to lie elsewhere

The problem of Indian industry is that of small and medium firms—they face difficulties in getting launched, in surviving, and in growing.

India’s turnaround Budget

Union Budget 2021 India: This Budget has the potential to mark a turning point for Indian economic policymaking, as well as for the economy

Another positive development is the plan to expand the scope of privatisation and disinvestment, including a couple of smaller public sector banks, and the giant Life Insurance Corporation of India.

Lessons from India’s cricketing success

India must learn from the IPL example—states need to create business development clusters where support from govt, industry and academia can be concentrated

Start-up clusters key, not incubators: Govt must ensure high-quality digital infra & ease of doing business

Instead of funding incubators, the government may do better by making sure that high-quality digital infrastructure is available for everyone, along with general promotion of ease of doing business

Instead of funding incubators, the government may do better by making sure that high-quality digital infrastructure is available for everyone, along with general promotion of ease of doing business.

India’s economic future lies in modernising for the masses

The growth of a technologically advanced start-up ecosystem is not a substitute for faster growth in labour-intensive manufacturing

In addition to the obvious acceleration of digitisation created by the pandemic, specific sectors such as health, education and finance provide global growth opportunities for India.

India’s agriculture reforms: Getting it right

December 21, 2020: The Centre needs to redesign the public procurement and distribution system to broaden the range of crops, including more high-value-added and less water-intensive crops

Trade-offs for growth revival: Why India’s policymakers need a new roadmap

Policymakers must focus on simultaneously managing the exchange rate and domestic inflation while maintaining an open capital account for renewed economic growth

India’s new economic reforms and challenges ahead

November 24, 2020: New economic reforms barely scratch the surface of what needs to be done to sustain growth that can lift millions out of poverty

The lessons of Trump: The defeat of Trump is not a panacea for the ills of the US or the world

In some ways, he helped surface those ills, when they might otherwise have been papered over for longer

Trump very much behaved as many world leaders have throughout history.

How can India recover from economic crisis? Bring back clear strategic thinking

The process of cleaning up and restructuring balance sheets of non-financial firms needs to resume and accelerate

The economic crisis is much more complex, and will be more difficult and costlier to turn around.

Agricultural reform: What to make of the new farm Bills

Farmers are being asked to accept possibly significant new income risks, without any alternative risk management policies, in exchange for an untested promise of higher, but likely riskier, incomes

I was reminding Dr Panagariya of the gold standard of reforms; I had not "shifted the goalpost", as contended by him.

Fighting Coronavirus: India’s first-six months of Covid-19

How quickly the nation’s leadership learns from these past six months and changes its approach will be vital for managing the pandemic and achieving economic recovery

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