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Growth and human development in the regional economy of Gujarat, India: an analysis of missed linkages

P. K. Viswanathan () and Chandra Sekhar Bahinipati ()
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P. K. Viswanathan: Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham
Chandra Sekhar Bahinipati: Indian Institute of Technology Tirupati

Journal of Social and Economic Development, 2021, vol. 23, issue 1, No 3, 25-47

Abstract: Abstract The case of Gujarat is often highlighted in the literature for the glaring mismatch between growth and human development (HD) outcomes. This paper makes a critical assessment of the growth and development scenario and their linkages with human development outcomes with particular focus on the important HD factors across the districts. The objectives of the paper are to: (i) analyse the broad trends in the major economic sectors, viz. agriculture, industries and employment and delineate the differences in the growth scenario across districts and (ii) examine the ‘inclusive growth outcomes’ across districts in the state based on the district-level HD indices and delineate the differences in the major HD factors. The broad trends in the growth of the major economic sectors reveal some disquieting aspects of growth of the state, characterised by stark differences in literacy and educational attainments across gender and districts, the decline in farming population coincided with marginalisation of farm holdings amidst growth of commercial agriculture, declining rural work participation, especially women work participation, and concentration of industrial growth confining to few districts. The analysis of district-level HDIs brings out disparate trends of the status of HDI, reflecting stark differences in the status of development of the critical components, viz. standard of living, availability of health infrastructure and educational attainments. Based on the analysis, we argue that Gujarat needs to strengthen and reorient its development priorities by accelerating public spending more on critical areas of public health infrastructure, provision of better healthcare services, nutritional security, education and skill development, women empowerment, etc., which are critical aspects of human development and inclusive growth.

Keywords: Inclusive growth; Human development index; Regional disparity; Public policy; Gujarat (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s40847-020-00144-8

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