Archive for September 10th, 2014

The decline of honeybees and its impact on agriculture..

September 10, 2014

Nice post by Julian Lee of WB. That too on a topic which we hardly discuss and think about.

He says how decline of honeybee population is leading to decline in agri prospects:

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Can toll roads be made user-friendly?…Undoing Several myths too..

September 10, 2014

I think even a child knows that it is not about building a new thing which matters. It is about sustaining it too. But in most of our policymaking this basic aspect is just plain lacking.

We are in this huge mania to create new cities, roads, airports, IIT/IIM etc. but there is just no emphasis on maintaining the quality of the current crop. The first is seen as a major reform but the second is the boring usual stuff. But most countries develop by doing the usual boring stuff really well.

Vinayak Chatterjee writes on how road maintenance is as crucial as developing them. I mean this is so obvious but somehow isn;;t the case here. The roads even tolled ones are hardly maintained. They remain useful for a couple of months/year and then are again back to square one. The passangers are irked as they hardly get a reasonable drive for the money they pay.

In the article he also discusses six myths on tolled roads.

In the end:

There is clearly a growing need for a new generation of specialised outsourced “asset management partnerships” to manage the operative life-cycle of an asset properly and most importantly, deliver value to the customer. Myths will not do.

Well, not sure whether we need another partnership to get things going. This will just make things more bureaucratic with multiple parties. The partnership responsible for building roads and collecting tolls should manage the assets too..

The mirage of “world class research”.. why India is so much behind?

September 10, 2014

India is often seen as a supply side story i.e. we need to resolve our several supply bottle knocks to meet the huge demand. Once supply is sorted, growth rates are a given.

There is one area where it is not supply but demand side which needs a relook – research in universities. Prof. Dinesh Mohan in this superb article points to several issues clogging our research. He says mirage of world class research. I would say leave world class let us even come to cattle class category (for lack of a better metaphor).  We are even unable to educate properly leave research..

Prof Mohan starts with Indian President’s parrot like words:

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