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Asian Political Economy (89)


A Quantum Leap in the Wrong Direction?

Book, February 2019 |

Shouvik Chakraborty
This new book, co-edited by PERI researcher Shouvik Chakraborty, presents an overview of the state of the Indian economy immediately prior to the country’s April 11 national election. Professor Prabhat Patnaik writes that Quantum Leap in the Wrong Direction provides “a great service to the Indian people who are about to participate in what is undoubtedly the most decisive election in our recent history. To choose wisely the people need to be correctly informed about the state of the country. And information is precisely what is being denied to them…. Quantum Leap has sought to present a true picture of the performance of the Modi government.”

On the Measurement of "Grayness" of Cities

Working Paper, June 2018 |

Sripad Motiram, Vamsi Vakulabharanam
Sripad Motiram and Vamsi Vakulabharanam of PERI consider situations where individuals belonging to multiple groups inhabit a space that can be divided into smaller distinguishable units, a feature characterizing many cities in the world.  They conceptualize a phenomenon that they term "Grayness" - a combination of spatial integration based upon group-identity and income. Grayness is high when cities display a high degree of spatial co-existence in terms of both identity and income. They develop an index of Grayness, then apply this Grayness index to both the Indian city of Hyderabad and selected American cities.
In “Giovanni Arrighi in Beijing:  Rethinking the Transformation of the Labor Supply in Rural China During the Reform Era,” Hao Qu and Zhongjin Li use a Marxian political economy perspective to analyze the formation of the reserve army of labor in China during the reform era, which began in 1978. Building from the work of Arrighi, and critiquing the highly influential Lewis model, Qu and Li show how the formation of an industrial reserve army in China has been an historical process in which the state has played an active role.

Migration, Crises, and Social Transformation in India Since the 1990s

Working Paper, January 2018 |

Smriti Rao, Vamsi Vakulabharanam
Since liberalization, urban migration in India has increased in quantity, but also changed in quality, with permanent marriage migration and temporary, circular employment migration rising, even as permanent economic migration remains stagnant. In this new paper, Smriti  Rao and Vamsi Vakulabharanam understand internal migration in India to be a re-ordering of productive and reproductive labor that signifies a deep transformation of society. This transformation is a response to the combination of agrarian, employment, and social reproduction crises.  The migration patterns support capital accumulation, but create major burdens for a majority of Indians, who are seeking stable, rooted livelihoods.

Revisiting the Gender Wage Gap in Korea: Focusing on Working Hours by Occupation

Working Paper, December 2017 |

Nayeon Lim, Minsik Choi
This paper by Nayeon Lim and Minsik Choi explores the relationship between working hours and the gender wage gap in Korea. Because the labor practice of working long hours in South Korea favors men, who tend to spend little time on domestic labor, long working hours can influence the gender wage gap by discriminating against women. Among other factors, working hours have a positive effect on the gender wage gap in male-dominated occupations, but not in female-dominated ones. Thus, working long hours could be a primary factor explaining the large gender wage gap in Korea, where most occupations are male-dominated.
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