Thursday, October 24, 2013

7 November 2013: Normalizing India-Pakistan Trade Relations

Zafar Mahmood
Punjab Public Service Commission, Lahore and
Rahul Khullar
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India

Date: November 7, 2013
Time: 03:30 P.M.

Gulmohar Hall,
India Habitat Centre
Lodi Road,
New Delhi – 110 003(INDIA)


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Thursday, October 17, 2013

24 October 2013: Systematic reviews: What have we learnt so far? An overview of evidence

Howard White

Systematic reviews have become a fashion in international development. What are they, and what are they good for? Dr White will present an introductory insight into why reviews are necessary, focusing on why meta-analysis is needed to synthesise study findings. The talk will look at key findings from a range of reviews on clean water, agricultural extension and conditional cash transfer. Strengths and limitations of systematic reviews and their alternatives will also be discussed.

Date: October 24, 2013
Time: 03:30 P.M.

Seminar Room, Ground Floor
ISID Complex, Plot No. 4
Vasant Kunj Institutional Area
New Delhi- 110 070(INDIA)


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Please register here:
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Monday, October 7, 2013

8 October 2013: Private vs. Government: New Evidence on School Performance and Implications for India’s Right to Education Act

Karthik Muralidharan
University of California, San Diego, NCAER, NBER and J-PAL  

Karthik will present results from the Andhra Pradesh School Choice Project—one of the most comprehensive research studies conducted on school choice and private schooling globally. Over five years the project provided lottery-based scholarships to economically-disadvantaged students to attend a private school of their choice. The project has yielded rich data on schools, teachers, households, and student performance in private and government schools. Karthik will discuss what these findings mean for the private school Clause 12 of the Right to Education Act that mandates a 25% quota in private schools for economically disadvantaged students.

Among the questions the study seeks to answer:
1) How do private and government schools systematically differ in household inputs, school facilities, teacher characteristics, teacher effort, instructional priorities, and time allocation at home and school?
2) Holding all other factors constant (including family socio-economic characteristics and pre-school and other factors that typically differ between students attending government and private schools), are private schools more or less effective than government schools?
3) How might the intake of students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds into private schools under Clause 12 affect students already in these private schools? What will be the spillover effects?
4) How does the impact of attending a private school differ based on a student’s socio-economic background, school characteristics such as the medium of instruction, and market characteristics such as the number of schools and the amount of effective school choice and competition?
5) What are the implications of these findings for implementing Clause 12? How should students be allocated to fill the 25% quota? How should private schools be regulated?

Date: October 8, 2013
Time: 05:30 P.M.

Constitution Club of India,
Rafi Marg,
New Delhi-110001(INDIA)


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Please join us for tea at 5.30pm and thereafter for the Lecture at 6pm. For queries, please contact Sudesh Bala at or on 011-2345-2669

Friday, October 4, 2013

8 October 2013: Power Sector Reforms: The Journey of Improving Governance and Rural Supply

Ashish Khanna
The World Bank

By the late 1990s the technical and financial performance of the power sector in India had deteriorated to the point where the Government of India had to step in to bail out the state utilities, almost all of which were vertically integrated State Electricity Boards (SEBs). Considering that the dismal performance of state utilities reflected internal and external shortfalls in governance, the new Electricity Act of 2003 mandated the unbundling and corporatization of the SEBs, along with the establishment of independent regulators, as a means of bringing about a more accountable and commercial performance culture with concomitant results in terms of improving the performance of utilities. A decade later another financial restructuring plan, four times the amount of restructuring undertaken a decade back with increased ramifications on private and financial sector, was finalized and rolled out in 2013.

What has been the experience with corporatization and reform experience in states? How does the key issue of agricultural and rural supply experience fit in within the overall reform story?

Ashish Khanna, Lead Specialist and India Energy Team Leader of World Bank, would be sharing his own experience of working across ten states over last 13 years on reform related issues. The presentation (30 minutes followed by discussion) would also capture the outputs of recent work undertaken by World Bank on different approaches followed by states in managing rural supply, and broader lessons on corporatisation of state utilities and regulatory reforms at state power sector.

Date: October 8, 2013
Time: 04:00 P.M.

Conference Hall
Centre for Policy Research,
Dharma Marg, Chanakyapuri,
New Delhi–110021(INDIA)


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