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This book presents an eclectic mix of interesting new areas in the domain of economics, management and sustainability. Written by leading experts, it provides valuable food for thought, with essays introducing new lines of research and empirical research papers offering sound research methodology. The book not only provides answers, but also raises numerous interesting questions concerning the areas covered to whet readers’ appetites to learn more.
Professor Anup Sinha is a respected teacher and is a great mind with wide-ranging academic interests spanning from economics and sustainability to management. As well as in various other places in India and the US, he has taught at the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta and Presidency College (now a University) Calcutta for almost three decades. To commemorate his contributions, this festschrift presents a collection of essays that are broadly subdivided into four sections: Economic Development; Vulnerabilities and Inclusive Growth; Sustainability and Corporate Governance; and Innovation and Management.



Economic Development


Measures of Development—Concepts, Causality, and Context

This chapter discusses the pros and cons of alternative measures of development and connects it to alternative concepts of development, both in the sense of desired goals and the processes that lead to it. Drawing analogies with the human body, the chapter discusses the key limitations of the standard development indices, and to the extent an excessive focus on them mixes up symptoms versus causes of underdevelopment. It is argued that the significance of specific development indices depends on the political context—for example, growth rates of income are more likely to be misleading in a non-democratic society than in a democratic one. The chapter concludes with some observations about how our policy debates often reflect differences in opinion about the desirability of alternative development indices.
Maitreesh Ghatak

Governance: Some Observations

According to the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), governance “is the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented).” Drawing on the existing literature to characterize governance, this chapter discusses the likelihood of influencing country-level governance via mechanisms such as aid and private cross-border capital flows and a heuristic framework is developed. The framework posits that governance is an equilibrium outcome in a bargaining game between rulers and subjects, when the identities of these players depend on historical events as the country evolves from its natural state.
Sumon Kumar Bhaumik

From Political Economy to Economics and Back Again?

The study of the economy, which used to be called political economy changed to economics and the term political economy fell into disfavor. More recently, the term has experienced a revival, although not necessarily referring to the same thing as economics. It is argued in this paper that the term economics should be replaced with the earlier term political economy. To do so, the paper describes how the name change occurred and how the term returned, how political economy is distinguished from economics, the change in the nature of the study of economies that accompanied—though not precisely—the change in the name, the problems caused by these changes, and the reasons for the change.
Amitava Krishna Dutt

Public–Private Partnerships, Corruption and Inefficiency

The chapter examines the formation of public–private partnerships (PPPs), one of the most important organizational forms to evolve over the last few decades. In particular, we analyse a possibility that has been relatively under-analysed in the literature, namely the possibility of collusion between the private firm and the governmental department in case of PPP formation. The chapter first develops a simple formal model based on risk sharing that is capable of analysing this issue. It then shows that PPPs are more likely to form in case the externality gains out of the project are significant, and the agents are quite risk averse. Otherwise, PPP formation may lead to bribery and sub-optimal project choice, and the government may opt for government control instead.
Indrani Roy Chowdhury, Prabal Roy Chowdhury

Vulnerabilities and Inclusive Growth


Capitalism, Crisis and the Common Man

Most of the advanced capitalist countries are in recession today causing untold suffering to the common man. Japan and the USA are going through recessionary phases since 1992 and 2001, respectively. Most of the European countries are also in recession since 2008. Speculative activities of the global financial capital are at the root of most of the recent crises the capitalist world is plagued with. The latest victim is Greece. In this chapter, we first develop a model modifying the IS-LM-based mainstream open economy macro-models and, then, use it to show how speculative activities of the global financial capital perpetrated the crisis in Greece.
Chandana Ghosh, Ambar Ghosh

School Language Policy, Crime and the Minority Underclass

This chapter examines the case for linguistic-cultural unification of the educational system in societies with a majority and a minority ethno-linguistic community. It is shown that possible aggregate efficiency gains from such unification have to be balanced against the consequences of greater income inequality within the minority community. The latter may set in motion decentralized attempts to expropriate productive individuals which, through cumulative causation, may more than dissipate any income gains accruing to the minority community. A crime/welfare dependent underclass may result, with disproportionate minority presence. Thus, the efficiency case for a unitary education policy needs to be qualified by the consequent possibility of both immiserization and criminalization of the minority. Measures to protect property rights may be more relaxed, and hence less costly, under a school system organised on principles of population-proportionate linguistic-cultural federalism, without necessarily generating crime or welfare dependency.
Indraneel Dasgupta

Private Giving in Higher Education

Why private giving in higher education in the USA by alumni and top philanthropists are significant but almost non-existent in a country like India? Introducing a public good (higher education) in Krugman’s (Krugman, J Int Econ, 9:469–479, 1979) model, we examine this dichotomy. In a country with a lower population base, the unit cost of production of the private good tends to be higher, and hence the price of giving lower, making public good much more attractive. The resulting per capita welfare in the two countries will likely differ. If national border control were removed, migration should equate per capita welfare with population in the two regions split even when private good technology exhibits economies of scale, unlike Krugman’s agglomeration hypothesis. Further, it is possible that per capita welfare turns out to be higher with the entire population situated in the more costly region with a higher price of the private good but higher overall provision of the public good. In Krugman’s world (without the public good), this is never possible.
Parimal Bag, Debasis Mondal

Being Out of Work: An Analysis of Unemployment and Its Duration in India

In India, the decadal Census and National Sample Survey Office ‘Employment and Unemployment’ surveys are the most authoritative sources of unemployment. Both sources use a rigid definition of unemployment, based on a combination of recognition and income criterion. As a result, estimates of unemployment are very low. In this chapter, information from the NSSO 68th round survey on the duration over which respondents classified as workers are without work is used. Respondents with positive values for this variable are classified as being ‘out of work’. The incidence of such out of work respondents is estimated, and using a two-stage least square logistic model, groups who are most at risk of being out of work, is identified.
Mousumi Dutta, Zakir Husain

Sustainability and Corporate Governance


Sustainable Eco-Management: Participatory Mechanisms and Institutions

Beneficiary participation is a special form of decentralized development management where all stakeholders would play an active role and enjoy equal status in the process of decision making and execution. The programs are mostly motivated by the livelihood approach with high values attached to an enhanced access to social capital. However, it has been shown by many social scientists that though the participatory approach is conceptually more democratic, its success potential is highly dependent on the local conditions. This chapter draws on a number of studies conducted between 2007 and 2014 on different rural, peri-urban and urban pockets of the state of West Bengal, India, focusing on ecologically sustainable management of natural resource and the environment like social forestry, wetland fisheries and municipal solid waste disposal in a co-management framework with active beneficiary participation. Since the contexts are distinct, there was variation in the notion of sustainable management itself and so was the composition of the stakeholder groups. All these studies were conducted to explore the context-specificity of the success probability of co-management practices in different situations. We documented particularly two different situations where otherwise suitable projects for participatory resource management failed to attain the intended result due to some peculiarities of the cases related to the presence of some built-in contradictions either in the composition of the stakeholder group leading to a deviation in the equal participation norms or in the regulatory setup comprising multiple authorities with inherent jurisdictional conflicts.
Sarmila Banerjee

Sustainability as Corporate Strategy: Importance of the Values of Ecosystem Services for Businesses

This paper talks of the importance of adoption of sustainability as corporate strategy by businesses in the developing world. Sustainability has been viewed in this paper primarily from the perspective of biodiversity conservation. Businesses inherently depend on the ecosystem services (i.e. services provided for free by the ecosystem to the human community), while non-acknowledgement of these services in course of the working of the firm may affect the firm’s long-run bottom-lines. The firm’s ecological footprint that comes in the way of biodiversity conservation and degrades ecological health essentially erodes the “natural capital” of the planet on which the firm is dependent. It is in this context, the paper brings in the notion of Creating Share Value (CSV), as conceived by Porter and Kramer (2006 and 2011) in a broader context, as also the importance of ecosystem services and their valuation in shared value creation. In the course of arguments in this paper, it emerges that by embracing sustainability as corporate strategy, firms are essentially creating shared value. This is exhibited in this paper through the application of valuation of ecosystem services. The paper exhibits two cases of ecosystem service values at two different scales: one at the scale of a wetland ecosystem (namely the Kunnigal wetland), and the other at the scale of a landscape (namely the Terai Arc Landscape). In this context, it also brings in the notion of ecosystem services as “GDP of the poor” thereby linking ecosystem services to livelihoods. In the process, the ensuing discussion entails how businesses need to use these values of ecosystem services in the course of decision making.
Nilanjan Ghosh

Insider Ownership and the Performance of Firms in India: Evidence from a Panel Semi-parametric Regression Model

This chapter examines the insider ownership–firm performance relationship in India for the period 2006–2013 by applying panel semi-parametric regression method. The results establish that the relationship is quartic for Tobin’s q. It is argued that the particular characteristics of corporate firms in India which are dominated by business groups and the particular characteristics of corporate governance, having the proactive role of the independent directors on the board, are responsible for such a relationship.
Indrani Chakraborty

Innovation and Management


Generic framework of a Business Incubator Model for a Sustainable Innovation Ecosystem

Business enterprise (BE) contribution to a nation’s economic growth (NEG) (NEG is a nation’s overall economic growth measured by parameters like growth, domestic product, employment generation) depends upon the optimum utilization of the resources of any given economy by increasing the efficiency of existing BEs and promotion of new BEs. Progressive policy interventions are intended to ensure the optimal functioning and sustainability of these enterprises or organizations by protecting them from an exploitative and dynamic external environment using implicit (subsidies, quota, tariffs) policy tools and to address market failure. Explicit policy prescriptions include promoting Innovation, developing S&T infrastructure, as one of the critical components for ensuring a new BE’s sustainability and growth overcoming systemic barriers leading to failure and promoting interaction among innovation actors. These prescriptions and interventions resulted in the emergence of state-supported formal business incubation model leveraging both explicit and implicit policy intervention in a quintuple helix framework bringing together and engaging all stakeholders for improving knowledge creation and translation efficiency. The adoption of this model is aimed at assisting NBEs in overcoming technological, operational, financial market related and other barriers in their early stages of their life cycle to reduce the high failure/mortality rates during these stages. This study undertakes a critical review of the literature in business incubator and business incubation (BI) domain to identify the services provided by BIs and maps their critical contribution to the success of the BI-NBE (NBEs refer to those BEs at an preliminary ideation stage with unproven and/or technology or business model innovation) dyad. Our findings suggest that there is no convergence on what is an effective or ineffective BI. (For the purpose of this study, BI indicates both business incubator and business incubation and is used interchangeably.) However, there is a common consensus on the criticality of the availability of knowledge, finance and other crucial resources to the new BEs (NBE) but the way these are delivered by BIs to attain maximum impact is still not very well defined. Given this, the study proposes that a sustainable generic framework for delivery and impact assessment of BI services is critical. This framework should ideally address the weaknesses of the current approaches of BI-NBE dyad in terms of structure and diversity of service offerings. It also advocates a policy design that would facilitate a robust BI-BE engagement network to leverage their individual strengths across this network to accelerate and sustain the growth of this ecosystem resulting in monetization and wealth creation of a nation.
R. A. Bhaskar, B. V. Phani

The Neural Correlates of Decision-Making: Review and Research Agenda

Neuroeconomics combines classical economics and neuroscience to deepen our understanding about the role played by human brain in economic decision-making. Neuroeconomics provides a mechanistic, mathematical and behavioural framework to understand choice-making behaviour. The aim of this chapter is to organise and synthesise the current research on neural correlates of decision-making, identify major themes and trends in literature, and present potential areas of research. Based on an extensive literature review, this chapter presents the primary areas of research related to neurobiology of economic decision-making. The themes have been organised around role of reinforcement learning systems in valuation and choice, value-based decision-making, decision-making under conditions of risk and ambiguity and intertemporal discounting. In addition to this, social preferences and context-dependencies in decision-making have also been discussed. Finally, fallacies in interpretations, methodological issues in neuroeconomics research, current concerns and future directions have been summarised.
Kirti Sharda

Information and Communication Technology: Understanding Their Dark-Side Effects

The use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is pervasive and often all encompassing. Given the reliability, ubiquitousness and ease of use of modern ICT, being able to use them ‘anytime anywhere’ has certainly produced benefits for individuals and collectives in terms of efficiency, flexibility, innovation, productivity and social connectivity. However, the past few years have seen the rise of a number of phenomena that illustrate a growing and an increasingly pervasive ‘dark side’ of the use of ICT. Technostress, technology addiction and information overload are examples of this. The paper will provide an overview of the research of these emerging phenomena, describe their negative consequences, and identify possible mitigation mechanisms.
Monideepa Tarafdar, Jean-François Stich

What Makes a Good Leader: A Tribute to Anup K Sinha

This chapter is a tribute to the leadership and teaching abilities of Anup K Sinha. As an executive coach who comes across people across different walks of life, each and every interaction with Anup K Sinha has been a learning experience for me. The chapter elaborates on the qualities of leadership and how they can be illustrated through the life of Professor Anup K Sinha.
Anamitra Chatterjee
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