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‘What’s your gotra?’ The economics of kinship networks

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BusinessLine Oh, I’m not wearing my clan lineage like a badge of honour — in the way that our petty politicians have been doing with a cynical eye on provincial-minded voters. I’m only pointing to the economic principles that govern such ‘kinship networks’ (as... More »

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Using economics and tech to ‘out’ #MeToo predators

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BusinessLine Wait, what? Outlandish though it may sound, there are economic models and technological applications that can help expose serial sexual predators and establish a cast-iron legal case against them. Aren’t victims’ testimonies enough? Victims’ testi... More »

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Assam, NRC, and the economics of migration

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BusinessLine I heard that over 40 lakh people are losing their citizenship… You heard wrong. It’s true that the draft list of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) for Assam, the mechanism to identify illegal immigrants (mostly from Bangladesh) into the Stat... More »

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The mercenary economics of breast-milk substitutes

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BusinessLine Looks like you want to get a load off your chest… Yes, nutrition advocates are all aflutter over recent attempts by US representatives at the UN-affiliated World Health Assembly to block a resolution that called on governments to “protect, promote... More »

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The economics & biopolitics of Ireland’s abortion vote

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BusinessLine What on earth is ‘biopolitics’? It’s a sociological term coined by Swedish political scientist Rudolf Kjellen (who also coined the term ‘geopolitics’). French social theorist Michel Foucault invoked it to convey the notion of the exercise of state... More »

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The economics of epidemics and why prevention matters

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BusinessLine Is this about Nipah? Yes, and more. Epidemics like Nipah, bird flu or Ebola time and again dent economies while causing serious damage to human lives. Take Nipah for example. The zoonotic (spread from animal to human) virus claimed more than 100 l... More »

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The politics and economics of horse-trading

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BusinessLine I see you have Karnataka on your mind. Absolutely. The market for equine assets has perked up overnight, given the hung nature of the electoral verdict there. Is there a political and economic rationale for this? You bet. More generally, almost al... More »

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Money for doing nothing: the economics of Utopia

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BusinessLine I want citizenship in that blessed land. Who doesn’t? So I guess Finland isn’t your idea of Utopia. What’s Finland got to do with it? Last week, newspapers around the world headlined the news that the Finnish government would wind down, by this ye... More »

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Priya Varrier, and economics of social media stardom

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BusinessLine Ah, the girl in the ‘wink’ video! The same. The young Malayalam actress attained overnight stardom after a video clip from her film, depicting puppy love at school, went viral on social media. In the process, she’s earned a huge cache of ‘celebrit... More »

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Why the spirit of the Reformation now grips economics

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BusinessLine Reformation, as in the 16th-century movement that cleaved Christianity? The same, the one that began in 1517 CE with German monk Martin Luther nailing the so-called Ninety-five Theses, which laid bare the ‘faults’ of Catholic Christianity, at the ... More »

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Rahul G and the economics of ‘democratic dynasties’

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BusinessLine December 6, 2017:   ‘Democratic dynasties’? It’s a term deployed by Kanchan Chandra, professor of politics at NYU and lead author of the book, Democratic Dynasties: State, Party and Family in Contemporary Indian Politics. Chandra notes that dynast... More »