We conducted our advanced four day residential program, Liberty and Society Seminar, in Goa from 11 to 14 July. Engaging CCS alumni, the seminar provided participants with a greater understanding of the larger world within a liberal framework, emphasising limited government, individual rights, free trade, and competitive markets.
Attended by 24 alumni, the seminar engaged the participants in vital issues of public policy through thematic sessions on free speech, the job crisis in India, making a case for a liberal trade and agricultural policies and reform agenda for Modi 2.0 among others. The seminar also discussed the foundations of liberalism land liberalism in India, highlighting Indian voices and practises that have influenced our culture. Our esteemed faculty included, Bhuvana Anand, Director - Research, Centre for Civil Society; Parth Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society; Anupam Manur, Assistant Professor,The Takshashila Institution; Jerry Johnson, Writer; Neeraj Kaushal, Economist and Writer and Swaminathan Aiyar, Journalist and columnist.
The Indian School of Public Policy (ISPP) organised a workshop on 'Hard Evidence for Tough Decisions: Evaluation in Development Policy' conducted by Dr. Emmanuel Jimenezon, Executive Director, The International Initiative on Impact Evaluation on 13 July, 2019.
Engaging with 40 enthusiastic learners, Dr. Jimenezon explained the various tools used in impact evaluation, including randomised control trials, regression discontinuity, the differences in differences approach, and instrumental variables. Drawing on case studies of interventions in India – environmental auditing in Gujarat, of corruption in MNREGA in Bihar and of school education in Haryana, he demonstrated the role of impact evaluation in leading policymakers to better understand policy and developmental outcomes.
This July, we conducted our flagship program, the ipolicy for journalists in the hill-town of Lansdowne in Uttarakhand in partnership with Atlas Network. The workshop engaged 24 journalists from leading national and regional media portals like Zee news, NDTV, Hindustan Times (Hindi), Amar Ujala, Dainik Jagran and Jansatta (Indian Express Hindi) among others.
The three-day residential workshop included dedicated thematic sessions on the New Education Policy, the Fee Regulation Act, environmental challenges and liberalism in India delivered through interactive games, simulation and dialogue.
Our faculty included Kumar Anand, Director - Advocacy, Centre for Civil Society; Prashant Narang, Associate Director - Research, Centre for Civil Society and Rohan Joshi, Head of Outreach, Centre for Teacher Accreditation (CENTA).
We also also conducted the ipolicy for students at the City Montessori School, Lucknow, attended by 40 curious and bright school students.
"It was great. It gave me a new perspective to look at the present conditions. It gave me an idea of how rights, though granted , are not of much help when it comes to practicing them"
- CMS Lucknow ipolicy
In a big win for us, the Draft National Education Policy 2019 (NEP) recently released by the Government makes clear recommendations for states to implement the idea of separation of functions to reform school and higher education in India. Separation of functions is one of the foremost principles of good governance without which no structural reforms in education are possible.
At CCS, we have continued to build evidence, and advocate for the effective uncoupling of functions in education governance, particularly, separating the role of the state as the provider, regulator, financier and assessor of education. In 2018, we released the Reforming Education Governance in India: Policy Blueprint for Separation of Powers Report proposing a separation of the functions of service-delivery, assessment of learning outcomes, and adjudication of disputes into three independent bodies. This recommendation was also presented to the Kasturirangan Committee, the apex body headed by Dr K. Kasturirangan tasked with developing the NEP.
To further this idea, this June, we attended two roundtables on the draft NEP organised by the Centre for Policy Research and the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights. On 25th June, we organised our monthly dialogue with 13 journalists on the NEP, representing leading media houses like Dainik Bhaskar, ETV Bharat, Amar Ujala among others.
The National Independent Schools Alliance (NISA), has also launched a National Education Policy Campaign with regional meetings held in Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, with over 1300 attendees.
171 learners have successfully graduated from the second edition of our Massive Online Open Online Course (MOOC) on Education Policy in India this June. Titled 'Education in India: Ideas, Policies, Alternatives', the course is being offered as A four-week online course open to enrolments.
The course was launched to address the enduring lack of a comprehensive and accessible training in education policy in India and aims to train students in research methods, along with the philosophical, economic, and political aspects of education policy in the Indian context.
Our course modules address the historical and extant education policy landscape in India, the economics of education, regulatory frameworks and interventions and innovations to catalyse education quality. Its faculty consists of eminent educationists and policy experts, including Amit Kaushik, CEO, Australian Council for Educational Research (India); Yamini Aiyar, President and Chief Executive of Centre for Policy Research; Parth Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society and Gurcharan Das, Author and Former CEO, P&G India, among others.
This June, the Indian School of Public Policy (ISPP) conducted three workshops, engaging 104 participants. Conducted by Dr. Amir Ullah Khan, Development Economist, the workshop on 'Setting Priorities: Policy Making and Development Finance' highlighted the importance of gathering evidence and measuring impact to ensure efficient allocation of resources.
Our second workshop, on 'Does India want to grow at 10%' was conducted by Dhiraj Nayyar, Chief Economist, Vedanta Resources conducted a workshop and highlighted the significance of evidence-based public policy-making as a pre-requisite for improved economic growth.
Dr. Arunabha Ghosh, Founder-CEO, Council on Energy, Environment and Water, also conducted a workshop on 'Energy Transitions in Emerging Economies: Opportunities, Risks, and Ways Forward'. The workshop focused on the role of public policy in ending energy poverty and enabling the transition to sustainable forms of energy such as solar power.
On 8th June, the Indian School of Public Policy (ISPP) hosted a webinar with Mr. Sebastian Hug, Consul General and CEO, Swissnex India, with a focus on Switzerland's success in industry and governance. Using case studies on the cheese, fintech and watch-making industry, Mr. Hug highlighted the need for a conducive environment facilitated by the government in the form of investments in research and development, robust education system and regulatory frameworks facilitated by an effective government.
He emphasized that rather than having an innovation policy, Switzerland's success can be attributed to the creation of such facilitative conditions, which encourages innovation.
This June, we took the ipolicy- our flagship introductory course in public policy to Bangalore and Hyderabad, with 61 graduates.
Through interactive learning sessions, games and simulation, our programs brought to our participants, the principles of sound public policy, and vibrant dialogues on welfarism and corporatism, on the role of states and markets and on education policy in India. Our speakers also engaged our participants in discussions on contemporary policy concerns like the agrarian crisis, effective property rights, the alcohol prohibition policy and the significance of greater choice and competition in the education sector.
Our eminent faculty this month included JP Narayan, Founder, Lok Satta Party; Rahul V Kumar, Research Consultant, Centre for Public Policy Research; Rohan Joshi, Head- Outreach, Centre for Teacher Accreditation and Parth Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society.
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In another win for our on-going work to promote the ease of doing business in India, the government is planning to significantly cut down the number of approvals required for kirana stores and eateries which will help make procedures simpler for aspiring entrepreneurs. CCS has been working to dismantle regulatory barriers that directly impact the ease of opening and running businesses, the removal of judicial bottlenecks to a conducive business environment, and towards fostering inclusive markets and improving livelihoods for bottom-of-pyramid communities. In 2018, we published the Doing Business in Delhi Report that studied the regulatory barriers to operate restaurants, meat shops and e-waste recycling plants in Delhi, evaluating the business reforms conducted between 2016 to 2018. We also hosted a roundtable bringing together policy experts and influencers to advocate for a reduction in licensing requirements and easing the opening of small and medium businesses in Delhi.
Know more about Jeevika, our law, liberty and livelihood Campaign here.