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					                Universalising Socio-economic Security in South Asia


From the 17th to 20th of February, a major conference was held in Delhi on
“Universalising Socio-Economic Security for the Poor in South Asia”, jointly organised by
ISS and the Institute of Human Development. It was a result of several years of
collaboration by a regional network, comprising the Centre of Development studies,
Tiruvananthapuram (CDS), the Centre for Economic and Social Studies, Hyderabad
(CESS), the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS), the Pakistan Institute of
Labour Education and Research (PILER), the Rural Development Institute of the
Chinese Academy for Social Sciences (RDI/CASS) and the Self-Employed Women‟s
Association, Ahmedabad (SEWA), and it was organised on their behalf. The
„Universalisation‟ theme and its main sources of funding (Ford Foundation-India, IDRC-
India, Wotro and FNV, among others) were also closely linked to the ISS Diploma
programme on Universalising Socio-economic Security for the Poor.

The conference brought together an impressive range of (around 200) participants from
academia, high-ranking Indian government officials and policy-makers, international
agencies (such as the ILO), foreign aid ministries (such as DFID), think-tanks (such as
IPS) and South Asian NGOs and grassroots activist organisations (such as SEWA and
PILER). The result was a lively, and vibrant discussion that kept academic debates firmly
grounded on practical concerns of the policy-makers and activists in the field of social
policy, social protection and alleviation of poverty. The subject matter of the papers
reflected the diversity of the participants---with over 50 presentations in total (in both the
plenary and parallel sessions) on access to assets, education and employment;
entitlements; food security; heath policies; generational issues of children/youth and
population ageing; migration; the land issue; institutional arrangements; international
experiences on universalisation; and the politics and financing of such policies. A full list
of papers and participants will be found in the programme (which you will find attached).

Given the shift that it implied from mainstream thinking, there was a considerable---
indeed a quite remarkable---degree of consensus amongst participants (including policy-
makers and government officials) on the need: (a) for the universalisation of socio-
economic security on both theoretical (economies of scale and inter-linkages between
health, food and employment policies) and ethical grounds; and (b) for the state to take a
leading role in the delivery of basic services and infrastructure and regulating the
activities of the private sector. The main bone of contention between academics and
activists, on the one hand, and government officials and policy-makers, on the other,
was around the question of finance which raised broader distributional issues such as
taxation and priorities in government expenditures.

The ISS staff who presented papers were Amrita Chhachhi, Anirban Dasgupta, David
Dunham, Mahmood Messkoub and Ashwani Saith. If you are interested in any papers
that were presented please contact the ISS organisers (Ashwani Saith or Mahmood
Messkoub).

David Dunham and Mahmood Messkoub (SGIV)
24 February 2008.
                          International Conference on

                UNIVERSALIZING SOCIO-ECONOMIC
                    SECURITY IN SOUTH ASIA

                               February 17-20, 2008

                                      Organised by

                  Institute for Human Development (IHD), New Delhi
                                           and
                      Institute of Social Studies (ISS), The Hague


                           PROGRAMME
                                FEBRUARY 17, 2008

                 Venue: World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature Auditorium
                       172-B, Lodhi Road, New Delhi – 110003


1530-1630 hrs              :    TEA AND REGISTRATION

1630-1745                  :    INAUGURAL SESSION

                                Welcome and Opening Remarks
                                Professor Alakh N. Sharma, Director, Institute for Human
                                Development, New Delhi & Conference Coordinator

                                About the Conference
                                Professor Ashwani Saith, ISS, The Hague and London
                                School of Economics and Political Science

                                Keynote Address
                                Professor Arjun Sengupta, Chairman, National Commission
                                for Enterprises in the Unorganised Sector, Govt. of India and
                                Member of Parliament

                                Address by the Chairperson
                                Professor Abhijit Sen, Member, Planning Commission,
                                Govt. of India

                                Vote of Thanks
                                Shri C. Upendranadh, Senior Fellow, Institute for Human
                                Development

1745 --1815                :    TEA

1815-1930                  :    PLENARY SESSION I: TOWARDS AN AGENDA FOR
                    UNIVERSALISING SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC
                    SECURITY: PERSPECTIVES AND ISSUES

                    Chairperson
                    Wahiduddin Mahmud, Professor of Economics, Dhaka
                    University

                    Speakers
                    Ashwani Saith, ISS, The Hague & London School of
                    Economics & Political Science
                    Universalisation of Social Protection: Broadening the Policy
                    Agenda

                    Renana Jhabvala, National Coordinator, Self-Employed
                    Women’s Association (SEWA)

                    Guy Standing, Professor of Economic Security, University
                    of Bath & Professor of Labour Economics, University of
                    Monash

1930            :   RECEPTION AND DINNER

                    FEBRUARY 18, 2008

0900-1115 hrs   :   PLENARY SESSION II: ACCESS TO ASSETS
                    Venue: Lecture Hall, India International Centre (IIC),
                    Annexe, 40, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi

                    Chairperson
                    Bina Agarwal, Professor, Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi

                    Presentations

                    G.S. Bhalla, Professor Emeritus, Jawaharlal            Nehru
                    University, New Delhi
                    Access to Land in India: Contemporary Issues

                    Aly Ercelan, Pakistan Institute of Labour and Education
                    Research, Karachi
                    Enabling Equitable Access to Land & Fisheries in Pakistan

                    Krishna S. Vatsa, Secretary, Government of Maharashtra
                    Asset-Based Approach to Household Risk Management:
                    Evidence from South Asia

                    Anirban Dasgupta, ISS, The Hague
                    Land Issues in West Bengal

                    Discussants

                    T. Haque, Chairman, Commission for Agricultural Costs and
                    Prices, New Delhi
                Amita Shah, Gujarat Institute of Development Research,
                Ahmedabad

                Biswajeet Chatterjee, Professor, Jadavpur University,
                Kolkata


1115-1130   :   TEA



1130-1300       Parallel Session 1: Access to Education
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson

                Muchkund Dubey, Chairman, Council for Social
                Development, New Delhi

                Presentations

                J.B.G. Tilak, Professor, National University of Educational
                Planning and Administration, New Delhi
                Right and Access to School Education in South Asia: How far
                from Universalization?

                H.M.A. Herath, Head, Department of Public Administration,
                University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka
                Universal and Equal Access to Education in Sri Lanka: Some
                Major Issues and Challenges

                Discussants

                D.P. Chaudhri, Monash University

                Sarada Balagopalan, Centre for Studies in Developing
                Societies, Delhi

                Ramya Subrahmanyan, Social Policy Specialist, UNICEF,
                New Delhi

1130-1300       Parallel Session 2: Public Policy for Public Health
                Venue: Conference Room III, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson

                A.K. Shiva Kumar, Member, National Advisory Council
                Presentations

                Presentations
                K.S. James , Institute for Social and Economic Change,
                Bangalore
                Achievements and Gaps in Basic Health Status in India:
                Challenges of Universalization of Access
                C. Sathyamala, Independent Researcher, New Delhi
                Public Health Policies in India

                Discussants

                Ravi Duggal, Independent Consultant (Research, Training
                and Advocacy),… Mumbai

                Marie-Claude Martin, Senior Programme Specialist,
                 International Development Research Centre, New Delhi

                Yogesh Jain, Jan Swasthya Sahyog, Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh

1300-1345   :   LUNCH



1345-1530   :   PLENARY SESSION III: ACCESS TO GAINFUL
                EMPLOYMENT – MACRO PERSPECTIVE
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson
                Jayati Ghosh, Professor,Jawaharlal Nehru University, New
                Delhi

                Presentations
                Rizwanul Islam, International Labour Organisation, Geneva
                Social Protection: Exploring Inter-linkages and Alternatives

                Sheila Bhalla, Visiting Professor, IHD
                Employment Generation and Poverty Alleviation

                Ajit Singh, Professor, Cambridge University, UK
                Permanent Full Employment and Global Economic Order:
                The Other Pillar for Universalising Socio-Economic Security

                Ajit K. Ghose ,ILO, Geneva
                Employment and Socio-Economic Security in Developing
                Asia: A Brief Note

                Discussants
                J. Krishnamurty, Retired Senior Economist, Employment
                Sector, ILO and Visiting Professor, Institute for Human
                Development, New Delhi

,               Dipak Mazumdar, Professor, University of Toronto, Canada
                and Visiting Professor, IHD
1530-1545   :   TEA

1545-1715   :   PLENARY SESSION IV : INFORMAL ECONOMY AND
                EMPLOYMENT
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe
                Chairperson
                H.S. Anand, Secretary, Department of Urban Employment &
                Poverty Alleviation, Government of India

                Presentations
                K.P. Kannan, Member, NCEUS, New Delhi
                Informal Economy and Employment Strategy: An Indian
                Perspective
                Smita Srinivas, Assistant Professor, Urban Planning
                Programme, Columbia University
                Universalisation and Informality: Sticky Institutions of Places,
                Work, and Work Places
                Discussants
                Donna L. Doane, Home Net South East Asia, Manila

                Sharit Bhowmick, Professor, Tata Institute of Social
                Sciences, Mumbai

                Sukti Dasgupta, ILO, New Delhi


            FEBRUARY 19, 2008

0900-1045       PLENARY SESSION V: FOOD SECURITY
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe
                Chairperson
                S.R. Hashim, Director, Institute for Studies in Industrial
                Development and Former Member, Planning Commission
                Presentations
                D.N. Reddy, Former Professor of Economics, University of
                Hyderabad

                Madhura Swaminathan, Professor, Indian Statistical Institute
                Kolkata
                PDS: Challenges of Universalisation
                Discussants
                Prem Vashistha, Visiting Professor, IHD
                Praveen Jha, CESP, Jawaharlal Nehru University
                Ramesh Chand, Professor, National Centre for Agricultural
                Economics & Policy Research (TBC)

1045-1100       TEA

1100-1300   :   Parallel Session 3:Generating Entitlememts–
                Alternative Approaches
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson
                Rohini Nayyar, Former Principal Advisor, Planning
                Commission, GOI

                Presentations
                Amaresh Dubey, JNU & Rajesh Shukla, National Council
                of Applied Economic Research, New Delhi
                Economic Insecurity of Indian Households: Evidence from a
                Recent Survey
                Ramesh S Arunachalam, Microfinance Consulting Group,
                Chennai & Ajay Tankha, Development Consultant, New
                Delhi
                Microfinance and the Economic Security of the Poor in India:
                Towards a New Financial Inclusion Paradigm in India
                Ashok Pankaj, Senior Fellow, IHD
                Early Lessons from NREGA as Social Security in India
                Rompal Matthias, GTZ, Germany
                Social Protection and Social Transfers
                Discussants
                Indira Hirway, Director, Centre for Development Alternatives,
                Ahmedabad

                Vegard Iversen, University of East Anglia




1100-1300   :   Parallel Session 4: Gender and Social Protection
                Venue: Seminar Hall II, India Islamic Cultural Centre
                (Adjacent to IIC Annexe)

                Chairperson
                Amitabh Kundu, Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University

                Presentations
                Simeen Mahmud, Bangladesh Institute of Development
                Studies, Dhaka
                Social Protection from a Rights Perspective

                Ratna Sudarshan, Institute for Social Studies Trust, New
                Delhi
                Social Security for Women Informal Workers
                Amrita Chhachi, ISS, The Hague
                Ensuring Democratic Citizenship: A Gender Perspective on
                Contending Models of Social Protection

                Discussants

                Aasha Kapoor Mehta, Indian Institute of Public
                Administration, New Delhi
                Jeemol Unni, Gujarat Institute of Development Research,
                Ahmedabad

                Pei Xiaomei, Professor of Sociology, Tsinghua University,
                 China

1300-1345       LUNCH

1345-1530   :   Parallel Session 5:Children and Social Protection
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson

                Shantha Sinha, Chairperson, National Commission for Child
                Rights

                Presentations

                Rekha Wazir, International Child Development Initiatives,
                Leiden, The Netherlands
                Newly Emerging Needs of Children: An Exploratory Concept

                Gabrielle Koehler, Regional Adviser, UNICEF, South Asia
                Office, Kathmandu
                Social Protection for Children in South Asia

                Deepa Sinha & Biraj Patnaik, Office of the Commissioners
                of Supreme Court in the Right to Food Case, New Delhi
                Social Protection for Children Under Six: A Case Study of
                 Legal Action on the ICDS in India

                Discussants
                Preet Rustagi, Senior Fellow, IHD
                Mala Khullar, Independent Consultant,Co-editor, Asian
                Journal of Women‟s Studies
                Enakshi Ganguly Thukral, HAQ, New Delhi

1345-1530   :   Parallel Session 6: Aged
                Venue: Seminar Room II, India Islamic Cultural
                Centre

                Chairperson

                C.P. Thakur, Former Professor, Faculty of Management
                Studies, University of Delhi

                Presentations

                Marius Olivier, Director, Centre for International and
                Comparative Labour and Social Security Law, University of
                Johannesburg
                 Developing a rights-based framework for the regulation of
                security in old age: Policy and legal considerations.
                Irudaya Rajan, Professor, Centre for Development Studies,
                Thiruvanthapuram
                Implications of Population Aging with Special Focus on Social
                Protection for Elderly Persons in South Asia

                Mahmood Messkoub, ISS, The Hague
                Social Policy for the Aged

                Discussants

                Moneer Alam, Institute for Economic Growth, Delhi
                Feng Sen, Department of Sociology, Tsingua University,
                China

1530-1545   :   TEA

1545-1730   :   Parallel Session 7: Migrants and Other Disadvantaged
                Groups
                Venue: Seminar Room II, India Islamic Cultural
                Centre

                Chairperson

                G.K. Chadha, Member, Economic Advisory Council to the
                 Prime Minister and Professor Emeritius, JNU (TBC)

                Presentations

                Sajjad Zohir, Director, Economic Research Group,
                Bangladesh
                Exclusion and Inclusion: Dilema in Realising Socio-Economic
                Security Programmes in Bangaldesh

                Priya Deshingkar, Overseas Development Institute
                Social Security for Migrant Workers in South Asia

                Darshini Mahadevia, University for Environmental Planning
                & Technology, Ahmedabad
                Social Protection and Slum Dwellers in India

                Discussants

                Yu Zhu, Director, Centre for Population and Development
                Research,Fujian Normal University, China

                Surjit Singh, Institute of Development Studies, Jaipur


1545-1730   :   Parallel Session 8: Other Marginalised Groups (Dalits,
                Tribals and Minorities)
                Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

                Chairperson

                Surinder S. Jodhka, Professor, Centre for Studies in Social
                Systems, JNU
                 Presentations

                 Dev Nathan, IHD, New Delhi
                 Social Security, Compensation and Reconstruction of
                 Livelihoods in Involuntary Displacement: Issues in Inclusive
                 Growth for Indigenous Peoples

                 Ravi Raman, University of Manchester, UK
                 State, Citizenship and Human Development:             Adivasi
                 Trajectories in the ‘Model State’ of Kerala

                 Ashwani Deshpande, Delhi School of Economics
                 Where the Path Lead: The Role of Caste in Post-University
                 Employment Expectations

                 Vishwanath, Centre for Social Exclusion, Mangalore
                 University
                 Globalisation, Livelihoods and Social Exclusion of Dalits in
                 India

                 Discussants

                 Harishwar Dayal, Director, IHD Eastern Regional Centre,
                 Ranchi

                 S.N. Chaudhary, Professor, Rajiv Gandhi Chair, Barkatullah
                 University, Bhopal

1730             TEA


                  FEBRUARY 20, 2008

            Venue: Lecture Hall, IIC Annexe

0900-1100   :    PLENARY SESSION V: LEARNING FROM EXPERIENCES
                  OF OTHER COUNTRIES

                 Chairperson

                 Deepak Nayyar, CESP, Jawaharlal Nehru University; and
                 Former Vice-Chancellor of Delhi University, Delhi

                 Presentations

                 Arjan De Haan, DFID, China
                 South and East Asian Social Policy Experience: Institutions
                  and Governance in the Extension of Social Security

                 Geof Wood, University of Bath, UK
                 The Security of Agency: Analysing Poor People’s Search for
                  Security in Developing Countries

                 Chris Nyland, Monash University
                The Compliance Challenge: Implications for Social Security in
                the People’s Republic of China

                Sarah Cook, Institute of Development Studies, University of
                Sussex and Huck ju Kwon, Korean Institute for Labour
                Studies, Seoul

                Discussants

                Sudarno Sumarto, Director, The SMERU Research Institute,
                Jakarta

                Le Bach Duong, Institute for Social Development Studies

                Mahmood Messkoub, ISS, The Hague

1100-1115       TEA

1115-1245   :   PLENARY SESSION VI: INSTITUTIONS AND
                GOVERNANCE FOR SOCIAL PROTECTION

                Chairperson

                B.S. Bawwan, Director, Indian Institute of Public
                 Administration, New Delhi

                Presentations

                Wahid Mahmud, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
                Pathways to Social Development in Bangladesh: Surprises
                and Challenges

                W.A.W. Wijewergena, Deputy Governor, Central Bank, Sri
                Lanka -
                Sustainable Socio-Economic Security: Some Lessons from
                Sri Lanka

                Ravi Srivastava, Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University
                Institution and Governance for Social Protection in a Rights
                based framework-Multiple Challenges

                Ramanie Samaratunge & Chris Nyland, Department of
                Management, Monash University, Australia
                The Management of Social Protection in Sri Lanka: Towards
                a New Agenda

                Discussants
                G. Hargopal, University of Hyderabad
                B. Venkatesh Kumar, Director, ICSSR, Western Regional
                 Centre, Mumbai

1245-1330   :   LUNCH
1330-1530   :   PLENARY SESSION VII:ALTERNATIVE
                INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS

                Chairperson
                Zoya Hassan, Member, National Minorities Commission

                Presentations

                Naila Kabeer, University of Sussex
                Voice and Representation

                Haris Gazdar, Collective for Social Science Research,
                Karachi
                Social Marginalisation and Social Protection: Towards A
                Citizenship Agenda

                David Dunhan, ISS, The Hague
                Politics, Conflict and Welfare: Sri Lanka and Kerala Revisited

                Kanchana Wickramasinghe, Institute for Policy Studies, Sri
                Lanka
                Natural Disasters and Socio-Economic Security in Sri Lanka

                Discussants

                Manoranjan Mohanty, Institute of Chinese Studies, Delhi

                C.S. Venkata Ratnam, International Management, Institute,
                New Delhi

                Karamat Ali, Pakistan Institute of Labour and Education
                 Research, Karachi

1530-1545   :   TEA

1545-1645   :   PLENARY SESSION VIII :COSTING AND
                FINANCING OF SOCIAL SECURITY

                Chairperson
                                         th
                Atul Sarma, Member, 13 Finance Commission, Govt. of
                 India

                Presentations

                Santosh Mehrotra, Principal Adviser, Planning Commission,
                 New Delhi
                Costing and Financing a Universal Social Security
                Programme: The Case of Extending Contingent Social
                Security to Informal Workers in India
                R.K.A. Subrahmanya, Former Chairman,Social Security
                Association of India
                Financing Social Protection for Informal Sector

                Discussants

                Pulin Nayak, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi University
                Rajiv Malhotra, Ministry of Finance, Government of India


1645-1730   :   CONCLUDING AND CLOSING SESSION

                Chairperson
                Yoginder K. Alagh, Chairman, IHD

                Overview and Main Conclusions of the Conference
                Alakh N. Sharma, IHD, New Delhi


                Observations
                Karamat Ali, Pakistan Institute of Labour and Education
                Research, Karachi
                Ashwani Saith, ISS, The Hague
                K.P. Kannan, NCEUS, Government of India
                Naila Kabeer, IDS, Sussex

                Vote of Thanks
                Mahmood Messkoub, ISS, The Hague

1730-1800       TEA

				
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