Accepted Paper:

Structure and changes in household income and employment across social groups in rural India  


Manasi Bera (Indian Institute of Dalit Studies)
Amaresh Dubey (Jawaharlal Nehru University)

Paper Short Abstract:

This study analyses the inclusiveness of the growth process underway in the rural economy of India by focusing on the changes in long term activity of the households and their current economic wellbeing and how the opportunities are being accessed by different social groups.

Paper long abstract:

Indian economy has undergone important structural changes leading to high growth and poverty reduction in the last few decades. Rural economy has also registered significant changes during this period. Important among them is the decline in the share of agriculture and allied sector to one third of rural NDP. However, this has not been followed by a proportional shift of workforce. This study attempts to analyse the nature and inclusiveness of structural transformation process underway in rural India since 1990s. The specific questions it asks are: How the structure of household income is changing in rural India. Whether the prosperity is shared by different social groups? What determines the shift in the main source of income of households? Two nationally representative data sources - NSS and IHDS - has been used for analysis. Findings are based on descriptive statistics and Logistic regression. Results show that though there is growth in income, and poverty rate has declined, fruits have not been distributed equally across social groups. Mobility towards more remunerative activity has been different across social groups. Marginalised social groups (SC and OBC) households show a greater shift towards other labour work (lateral mobility), Upper caste households towards better opportunities in the non-farm sector (vertical mobility), while tribal households continue to depend on land based activities. Social identity, education, land ownership, number of adults in household, occupation, and location are found to be important determinants of shift towards non-farm opportunities.

Panel J01
Structural change, inequality and inclusive growth: tensions and trade-offs (Paper)