Research Activities (2017-2022)

IIM Udaipur - Best MBA colleges in india

Research Activities (2017-2022)

Research Projects Completed

1. Governance Challenges in the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), India (Funding Partner: DAAD Germany, 2017-18)

Prof Saurabh Gupta and his co-authors Dr Rajiv Verma and Prof Dr Regina Birner (University of Hohenheim, Germany) investigated governance challenges in the world’s largest nutritional support programme ICDS. The findings of the research have been published in the journal Development Policy Review; a highly regarded journal referred by development policy makers world over.


  • Verma, R., Gupta, S. and Birner, R. (2018) Can vigilance-focused governance reforms improve service delivery? The case of Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) in Bihar, India, Development Policy Review 36 (S2): 786-802.

2. Uber for Tractor? Opportunities and Challenges of Digital Tools for Agricultural Machinery Hire in India and Nigeria (Funding Partner: German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, 2018-21)

This collaborative research project looked at how digitally enabled agri machinery hire services work in practice. The project involved a team of researchers from India, Nigeria and Germany. The findings have appeared in the top-ranking journal World Development.


  • Daum, T., Villalba, R., Oluwakayode, A., Mayienga, S.M., Gupta, S. and Birner, R. (2021) Uber for tractors? Opportunities and challenges of digital tools for tractor hire in India and Nigeria. World Development, Vol 144, August 2021.

3. Biomass Value Web: Sustainable Agricultural Transformation in Ethiopia (Funding Partner: German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, 2017-19)

The research analysed biomass based economic growth from the perspective of food security and sustainable livelihoods in Ethiopia, one of the hungriest and poorest countries in the world. The multinational research team comprised of members from India, Ethiopia, Germany, and Canada. The findings have appeared in two journal articles with high impact factor. One manuscript is currently under review.


  • Lin, J., Gupta, S., Loos, T. And Birner, R. (2019) Opportunities and Challenges in the Ethiopian Bamboo Sector: A market analysis of the bamboo-based value web. Sustainability, 11 (6): 1644.
  • Mengistu, T.W., Gupta, S. and Birner, R. (2018) Analysis of maize biomass use in Ethiopia and its implications for food security and the bioeconomy. Food Security, 10 (6): 1631-48.

4. Governance and Institutions for Sustainable Agricultural Development in Ghana (Funding Partner: German Federal Ministry of Education, 2017-18)

Prof Saurabh Gupta along with Dr Adu-Gyamfi Poku and Prof Dr Regina Birner studied the governance challenges in contract farming arrangements, and the seed quality and certification process in Ghana. The findings have appeared in three journal articles catering to interdisciplinary research.


  • Poku, Adu-Gyamfi, Birner, R, and Gupta, S. (2018) Is Africa ready to develop a competitive bioeconomy? The case of the cassava value web in Ghana. Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 200: 134-147.
  • Poku, Adu-Gyamfi, Birner, R. and Gupta, S. (2018) Making contract farming arrangements work in Africa’s bioeconomy: Evidence from cassava outgrower schemes in Ghana. Sustainability, 10 (5): 1604.
  • Poku, Adu-Gyamfi, Birner, R. and Gupta, S. (2018) Why do maize farmers in Ghana have a limited choice of improved seed varieties? An assessment of the governance challenges in seed supply, Food Security, 10 (1): 27-46.

5. Competitive Bioeconomy Growth in Nigeria (Funding Partner: German Federal Ministry of Education, 2017-19)

The project explored the diverse usages of maize and their market potential in the context of Nigeria, wherein maize is the most important cereal crop of smallholders. The findings appeared in the form of a journal article.


  • Ayobami, A, Gupta, S. Okoruwa, V.O. and Birner, R. 2022 The role of institutions in sustaining competitive bioeconomy growth in Africa: Insights from the Nigerian maize biomass value-web, Sustainable Production and Consumption, 30 (2022): 186-203.

6. Food Subsidy- PDS, cash, or both?

Should food subsidies availed of by many poor and some non-poor people in the form of subsidized cereals be given to them, instead, in cash? In this paper, Prof Anirudh Krishna (Duke University, USA) and Prof Agrawal contend that rather than asking this binary question, it might be cost-effective and welfare-enhancing to consider: where is PDS, and where might cash be, the better policy response for serving the same need?


  • Krishna, Anirudh and Tushar Agrawal. 2019. “Food Subsidy in Cash or Kind? The Wrong Debate,” Economic & Political Weekly, (Perspectives) 54(32): 39-43.

7. Skill Development: Vocational Education and Training in India

Skill development has been a major policy agenda of the Indian government. In this paper, Prof Tushar Agrawal and Prof Ankush Agrawal (IIT, Delhi) examine the labour market outcomes of the vocationally trained population in India. Their findings show that the relative returns to vocational education is higher than that to general secondary education.


  • Agrawal, Tushar and Ankush Agrawal. 2017. “Vocational Education and Training in India: A Labour Market Perspective,” Journal of Vocational Education and Training, 69(2): 246-265.

8. Education and Labour Market in India

Returns to Educatio

The literature on returns to education has focused largely on wage workers, thereby ignoring a sizable section of the workforce that is self-employed, specifically in developing countries like India. In this comparative study, Prof Tushar Agrawal and Prof Ankush Agrawal present the estimates of returns to education for business, farm and wage workers in India.


  • Agrawal, Tushar and Ankush Agrawal. 2019. “Who Gains More from Education? A Comparative Analysis of Business, Farm and Wage Workers in India,” Journal of Development Studies, 55(6): 1081-1098.

Gender Segregation and Wage Differentials

In another paper on labour market, Prof Agrawal examines the interrelation between two important dimensions of gender segregation: education and occupation. The paper further investigates the gender wage gap and its determinants in India.


  • Agrawal, Tushar. 2021. “Gender Segregation and Wage Differentials in India: The Role of Educational Attainment and Occupational Choices,” International Journal of Manpower, 42(1): 1-20.

9. Gender and Well-being in the Indian Labour Market: A Comparative Study

Gender, workplace support, and job demands remain under-researched on a cross cultural basis. Drawing from two studies conducted in different contexts (India and the USA) via different methodological approaches, Prof. Dina Banerjee and Prof. Vijayta Doshi compared and contrasted the nature of workplace support and perceived job demands of women workers in both nations. This mixed method study aimed to gauge how well-being of women in the Indian labour market is similar (or not) to that of women in the US labour market.


  • Banerjee, Dina and Vijayta Doshi. “Gender, Workplace Support, and Perceived Job Demands in the US and Indian Context,” Personnel Review, 49(7): 1451-1465.

10. Gender, Leadership, and Identity in India

Women in powerful leadership positions are still a rare phenomenon in India. Then what about women with two leadership positions? What kind of challenges do they face? How do they deal with those challenges? And most importantly how do they navigate and negotiate their ways through multiple identities like a mother, a daughter, a wife, and a leader? Through in-depth interviews with 49 women with dual leadership positions in India this study explored the interplay of identities at the juncture of gender and leadership in India.


  • Banerjee, Dina and Nazia Memon. “Identity Tensions of Women with Two Leadership Positions in India,” Gender, Work, and Organization, DOI:

11. Gender and Entrepreneurship in India

Although numerical representation of women entrepreneurs in India is on a rise, most entrepreneurs come from a socio-economically deprived background begging the question of whether entrepreneurship truly means empowerment for Indian women or is it simply a response to sheer economic necessities? Moreover, is the situation better for women entrepreneurs with an upper class background? Controlling for class, and collecting data in the form of 33 in-depth interviews, Prof. Dina Banerjee, Prof. Subhadip Roy, and Prof. Subhalaxmi Mahapatra explored the process of women’s entrepreneurship in India, with a special focus on the concept of emancipation.


  • Roy, Subhadip, Subhalaxmi Mahapatra, and Dina Banerjee. “I Mean Business: Exploring Women Entrepreneurs. Journey in India from an Emancipation Perspective,” Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies, DOI: