Governance

Featured Articles
January 4, 2021 How the historian's method is invaluable in developing an understanding of floods.
Need to consider the perspective of the historians who see floods as a naturally occurring event. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)
January 1, 2021 There is more to Delhi's air pollution than stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana.
The small window of a fortnight between rice harvesting and wheat sowing compels farmers to burn the crop residue (Image: Neil Palmer, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY SA-4.0 Generic)
December 29, 2020 Water resources in most Indian cities are overworked and overused, and not adequately replenished.
Cities in India are marked by unequal distribution of water, lack of access, outdated infrastructure and minimal enforcement of rainwater harvesting and other means of supply. (Image: Anish Roy, Pixabay)
December 12, 2020 How to plan for and implement FSM related initiatives in small towns?
Project Nirmal demonstrates appropriate, low-cost, decentralized, inclusive and sustainable sanitation service delivery solutions for two small towns (Angul and Dhenkanal) in Odisha. (Image: SCI-FI, CPR)
December 8, 2020 Though we have highly sophisticated ways of depicting data nowadays, we have gone backwards on linking data with decision making.
The quality of the government data for schematic reporting has improved as compared to 20 years ago, that does not necessarily mean that planning has improved (Image: Pikist)
December 7, 2020 The new farm related bills will spell doom for women workers who form the bulk of small and marginal sections of Indian agriculture, warns Mahila Kisan Adhikaar Manch (MAKAAM).
Farm women, overworked and underpaid (Image Source: India Water Portal)
Rapid hygiene study: Hand hygiene for COVID-19 and beyond in India
A study by WaterAid India calls for building the capacity of community networks to promote and support hygiene behaviours. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months ago

This year, Global Handwashing Day (observed annually on October 15) is particularly significant given the COVID-19 pandemic. While vaccine trials are ongoing, protective actions such as handwashing with soap is a critical first line of defence and cost-effective public health intervention.

Effect of a behaviour-change intervention on handwashing (Image: Climate Centre)
Groundwater recharge needs grassroots solutions: A study of two techniques in Kerala
Although groundwater is emerging as a critical issue and has managed to encourage new government schemes, a generic solution of rainwater recharge cannot be applied across different regions. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 1 week ago

In Kerala, around half the urban population and 80% of the rural population depend on open wells on their domestic water needs. But in the last decade, the majority of observatory wells recorded an average annual decline of half a meter.

Rainwater is captured from the rooftop of the community hall and diverted to the sump before it is pumped into the open well. (Image by Authors)
A rainbow recovery post-COVID
The movement towards radical ecological democracy needs to combine the practical and policy-level grassroots work with broader mobilization. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 1 week ago

There is a disquieting hush across the world as the linkage between the planet’s health and human well-being became pronounced during the times of the pandemic. The deepening socio-economic and ecological crises caused by patterns of production and consumption are being increasingly recognised.

The women of Deccan Development Society sanghams move towards more localized natural resource management (Image: Deccan Development Society, Facebook Page)
New groundwater guidelines prohibit industries and mining in over-exploited zones
Policy matters this week Swati Bansal posted 3 months 1 week ago

Revised guidelines for groundwater use notified

Centre issues revised guidelines for groundwater use (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)
No improvement in the water quality of the Ganga during lockdown: CPCB
News this week Swati Bansal posted 3 months 1 week ago

Water quality of Ganga river remained grim during lockdown: CPCB

Ganga river at Kachla, Uttar Pradesh. (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)
How forest-dwelling communities are braving the pandemic
Local communities and gram sabhas better understand the local complexities than the local administrations while dealing with a crisis situation. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 1 week ago

The pandemic and lockdown measures have had a drastic impact on a large population of poor and marginalised communities, causing loss of livelihoods and employment, food insecurity and socio-economic distress. While vulnerabilities, atrocities and injustices faced by forest communities due to forest, conservation and economic policies have increased d

The non timber forest products collection season, which is mainly in the months of April to June coincided exactly with the lockdown (Image: CIFOR, Flickr Commons)
Poor implementation of forest rights act hurts tribals
Need to recognise the rights of forest-dwelling and tribal communities over their traditional lands. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 2 weeks ago

In pre-colonial times, India’s forestlands were mostly under the use of the local communities. Forest policies led to centralisation in colonial times with forestland being subject to commercial over-exploitation for revenue generation purposes. This, in turn, led to land alienation of forest dwellers and an overall increase in deforestation.

Indigenous groups that lived and helped maintain the forests for centuries have been undermined (Image: Baiga women, Wikimedia Commons; CC BY-SA 3.0)
Governance lessons that could keep us prepared for pandemics
Leo Saldanha of Environment Support Group speaks on rethinking aspects of our governance system in post-pandemic times. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 2 weeks ago

Unabashed assaults by human beings on the natural ecological system have caused the coronavirus to spread in the first place.

Decentralised governance systems that allow to adapt and learn are best placed to deal with disasters (Image: Kantsmith, Pixabay)
Pandemic impacts on women – Stories of survival
Women experience the effects of the COVID-19 crisis in different, often more negative ways. How are they coping? Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 2 weeks ago

The pandemic has wrought havoc on the entire world. Pessimism, suffering, unemployment, hunger and poverty resound in all corners. To survive is a physical, mental and financial battle. And every family and individual has an anecdote to narrate that speaks volumes about their combat strategy, losses and victories.

Gender dimensions of the pandemic (Image: Gby Atee)
Dhenkanal gears up for better waste management
Odisha reiterates commitment to urban sanitation by launching pioneering state-wide initiative on solid and liquid waste management. Amita Bhaduri posted 3 months 2 weeks ago

The UNICEF and the Scaling City Institutions for India (SCI-FI) initiative at the Centre for Policy Research (CPR) in collaboration with the Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water Department (PR&DW), Government of Odisha (GoO), and the District Administration, Dhenkanal are making strides towards instituting district wide approach for Solid Liquid Waste Management (SLWM).

Odisha continues with its transformative journey in urban sanitation in areas of solid and liquid waste management. (Image: SCI-FI, CPR)