Introduction and Overview

  • Rakhee Bhattacharya
Part of the India Studies in Business and Economics book series (ISBE)


The introductory chapter begins with the current debate on rising inequality in income and assets, which is paying a heavy price on development across the world. The very idea of development perceived by the Western world in the post World War I period was directed towards economic growth, which has been beneficial for only a section of population and handful of rich nations, neglecting the rest. Thus inequality amongst people and across regions has gone very high over time, creating huge disparities between the rich and the poor, the core and the periphery, the advance and the backward regions. Such imbalance has created high potentials for dividing society between the economically rich and the rest. Therefore a persistent search for an alternative idea of development with social and regional dimension is important and urgent. It demands a much deeper understanding of geographical and spatial characteristics to provide knowledge about a ‘region’ with socio-economic and politico-cultural cohesiveness and potential in the changing ideas of development. Such emerging demand broadens the scope of economic geography and regional economy in the development framework, which connects the problems of regional distribution of the economy with the fundamental operation of economic laws. This volume has addressed the challenges of regional development in contemporary India. In its eight core chapters, an attempt has been made to redefine a region with more homogeneity and to have a policy focus for better outcome. The chapters have rigorous data base and its analysis to understand Indian context and its diverse regional economic performance. The last chapter has collated the findings of the volume and attempted a consolidated policy paper, where an alternative policy making is being suggested on the basis of voice, constitutional values, and a sound democratic decision making process on regional development. This policy process is important to attain equity and efficiency in development discourse and to make a substantive change in India's social landscape.


Regional Development Human Development Index Regional Disparity Regional Imbalance National Sample Survey Organisation 
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© Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies, Rajiv Gandhi FoundationNew DelhiIndia

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