Publications

Serosurveys point to inadequacies in India’s COVID-19 testing strategy

Over the past few months, a series of serosurveys for detecting the spread of COVID-19 have been carried out in India. The surveys are meant to identify the percentage of the Indian...

The unbearable goodness of being: A review of ‘Humankind’ by Rutger Bregman

Rutger Bregman, author of the New York Times bestseller, Humankind: A Hopeful History, attempts to address some important central questions of our times: Why do human societies today appear fundamentally...

Anticipating the Unintended #78: Radically Nefarious Outrage

This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that...

Tech-Tonic: Who Scrubs Your Feeds?

This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Given how 2020 has been so far, if I were to ask you your favourite month of the year, you would rightfully...

The PLA Insight: The Sino-Indian Border Dispute; Taiwan National Day & the PLA; SCS; Marine Corps; China’s Security Contractors; Drone Swarms; Veterans Law and more

I. The Big Story: The Sino-Indian Border Dispute Indian and Chinese Corp Commanders met for the seventh time to discuss disengagement and de-escalation at the Sino-Indian border. However, the meeting which started on...

The Bangladesh comparison

India was a midwife in the birth of Bangladesh. She sent in her army to liberate the newly born independent nation, and even stood up to threats from the world’s...

Watch on Japan | #3 Suga seeks to revive the economy while being troubled with a Science Council scandal

HIGHLIGHTS: 1st Oct – 14th Oct ● The Suga government is prioritizing administrative reforms and the revival of the pandemic hit economy. ● Amidst a dispute over the appointment of science council...

Breathe new life into public health. Far too many Indians rely on Baba Ramdev, Akshay Kumar

Media headlines and public discourse might not reflect it, but one of the most important policy priorities for India now and over the next decade is health. The immediate task,...

China’s new data security initiative has implications for India

This article was first published in Deccan Chronicle. Views are personal. Recently, the Chinese government announced the launch of a new Data Security Initiative. Outlining its components, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said...

India’s local governments must do far better in raising revenues

Driving into Bengaluru’s city centre a couple of weeks ago after several months of working from home, I was pleasantly surprised to see well-demarcated parking spaces, electronic signs and payment...

Eye on China: LAC – Quad Meets – Taiwan – Human Rights, Golden Week – Pew Survey – BRI & Yang in SL

Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties An interesting week with new warnings...

Covid hospital, not coastal road

Mumbai is the richest municipality in India with a budget whose size dwarfs many state government budgets. For instance it is 50 per cent larger than the state budget of Goa....

The PLA Insight: The Sino-Indian Stand-off; Nuclear Escalation; China’s India Dilemma; Increased China Taiwan Tensions; Ream Naval Base; US Elections and the PLA

I. The Big Story: The Sino-Indian Border Stand-off The 7th round Corp Commander-level meeting between China and India will most likely be held on October 12 after the two sides agreed to continue...

India’s Covid data like counting potholes under streetlights. There are far more in the dark

There are two ways to deal with the uncertainties arising from the Covid-19 pandemic. The first is to take them as they come, and as I wrote in an earlier...

Tech This Week | Facebook services integration comes with trade-offs

This article was first published in Deccan Chronicle. Views are personal. In case you are interested in technology policy, you might have heard rumours about Facebook trying to merge its...

Anticipating the Unintended #74: (Internet+Politics) & India’s Transition To An Industrial Society

This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that...

Police reforms still a distant dream

The Rashomon effect is named after a 1950 movie made by Akira Kurosawa. In the movie, a murder is described by four witnesses in contradictory ways. Their description reflects their...

MisDisMal-Information Edition 21

This newsletter is published at techpolicy.substack.com An excerpt from Edition 21 is reproduced below. Of Humour, Framing, Tin-foil pyramids and Bot-ching Democracy Conspiracies, Rumour and Humour Just a joke, or not...

Watch on Japan #2 | Suga becomes New PM of Japan & way forward with ‘Suganomics’

Suga becomes New PM of Japan & way forward with ‘Suganomics’ By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 15th, Sep -30th, Sep. · Yoshihide Suga becomes the PM of Japan, winning a landslide...

WHO’s COVAX Vaccine Access Initiative Won’t Succeed Without India’s Help

by Ruturaj Gowaikar and Shambhavi Naik Despite multiple lockdowns, forms of treatment and therapies, and intermittently aggressive contact-tracing, countries around the world have failed to arrest the spread of the...

Tech This Week | The need for anti-trust reform

This article was first published in Deccan Chronicle. Views are personal. Earlier this month, the Competition Commission of India dismissed an anti-trust case against Amazon. Here is some context. The...

Needed: Price Assurance

One silver lining to the 24 per cent fall in quarterly GDP between April and June was that growth in the agriculture sector was positive at 3.4 per cent. This...

Modi govt mustn’t hesitate to make Covid vaccine free for Indians. It only costs Rs 80,000 cr

Adar Poonawalla’s recent tweet prompted some discussion on India’s vaccination strategy. The CEO of the Serum Institute of India, one of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers, asked if “the government of India will have 80,000 crore...

Anticipating the Unintended #72: Should Courts Make Social Policies?

This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that...

Heed Napoleon’s words as China fancies its odds of taking Taiwan

The ongoing confrontation between Indian and Chinese troops along the Himalayan frontiers is serious, but pales in comparison with the situation across the Taiwan Strait. Over the weekend of 18-19...

Eye on China: LAC Talks – Xinjiang & Tibet – Xi at UN – Nepal Border – Tech Plan – Uneven Recovery

Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. Xi’s UN Speeches There were two speeches related...

Don’t ask the SC for loan waiver

If you have borrowed money as a home or business loan, you are bound by contract to repay that loan. Repayment is over a period of time, so you also pay...

MisDisMal-Information Edition 20

This newsletter is published at techpolicy.substack.com An excerpt from Edition 20 is reproduced below. Of Farmers, CBI, Love and other drugs Farmers and CBI Unfolding Note: This section contains a lot...

The PLA Insight: Issue no 71: The Sino-Indian Border Meeting; Taiwan and the PLA; Chinese Nuclear Missile Guidance Systems; 6th Military Intelligent Technology and Equipment Expo

I. The Big Story: The Sino-Indian Border Meeting The top military and diplomatic officers met on Monday this week, almost two weeks after the two foreign ministers reached an agreement in Moscow to...

Why we need to rethink how we disagree online

This article originally appeared in the Deccan Herald. An excerpt is reproduced here. Intentions as well as consequences are important in the information ecosystem. In July, an anonymous Twitter handle...
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