Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Karachi is Open to Survey

by Ilma Ghouse
Hussain Bux Mallah/Collective for Social Science Research
Sometimes the process of gathering data itself throws up findings about the subject that were not part of the original research questions. Recently, the Collective for Social Science Research undertook a Karachi wide data collection exercise for a study on the well-being of adolescents, supported by UNICEF and the Government of Sindh. Data were collected on over 2,800 adolescents from 120 localities in the city excluding upper income areas. The challenges faced while conducting this research provided unique opportunities for insight into the functioning of the city.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Ameliorate or leverage?

by Haris Gazdar

Photo Credit: Fatima Zaidi

‘Poverty, Inequality and Economic Growth’ was the title of this year’s annual general meeting of the Pakistan Society of Development Economist (PSDE) – the largest professional association of economists in the country – held in the national capital in early December.  Inequality, as distinct from poverty, has occupied many minds of late. The financial and economic crises of 2008 and 2009 swung opinion against fat cat bosses who were seen to have been further enriched as the middle classes were impoverished.  The work of Thomas Picketty, the French economist whose analysis of wealth and income distribution trends, added academic gravitas to popular discontent with the plutocrats, was frequently mentioned at the PSDE meeting.  Not to be left behind, the World Bank came up with its own South Asia report on inequality, which actually showed that at least in terms of consumption expenditure the region was among the least unequal.