Policy Briefs & Reports

Policy Challenges 2019-2024: The Key Policy Questions for the New Government and Possible Pathways

CPR Faculty

Centre for Policy Research

July 19, 2019

India is at an important juncture in its development trajectory. From rapid urbanisation to declining agricultural productivity; from weak human capital to the need for creating productive jobs; from new security threats to the need to re-position itself in a changing global order; from growing energy demands to the need to address rapid environmental degradation, India today has to negotiate multiple and conflicting socio-economic challenges. Decisions and actions taken over the next five years will be likely to shape the future of our economic and political trajectory. This document is an effort to spark debate and ideas on how India can negotiate these transitions across a range of sectors.


Foreign Policy and National Security

  • India’s Foreign Policy in an Uncertain World by Shyam Saran
  • Time for Disruptive Foreign and National Security Policies by Bharat Karnad
  • Need for a Comprehensive National Security Strategy by Shyam Saran
  • Managing India-China Relations in a Changing Neighbourhood by Zorawar Daulet Singh


Climate, Energy and the Environment

  • Rethinking India’s Approach to International and Domestic Climate Policy by Navroz K. Dubash and Lavanya Rajamani
  • Beyond Poles and Wires: How to Keep the Electrons Flowing? by Ashwini K. Swain and Navroz K. Dubash
  • Clearing our Air of Pollution: A Road Map for the Next Five Years by Santosh Harish, Shibani Ghosh and Navroz K. Dubash
  • Regulatory Reforms to Address Environmental Non-Compliance by Manju Menon and Kanchi Kohli


  • Big Potential, Big Risk: Underachieving Indian Capitalism and the Middle Income Trap by Michael Walton and Noopur Sen
  • A Relook at Infrastructure by Partha Mukhopadhyay
  • A Clarion Call for Just Jobs: Addressing the Nation’s Employment Crisis by Sabina Dewan
  • Back-End First: A National Agenda for India’s Agricultural Markets by Mekhala Krishnamurthy
  • Of Investment and Jobs by Partha Mukhopadhyay

The Welfare State

  • The Opportunities and Challenges Confronting India’s Welfare Architecture by Yamini Aiyar
  • Should PM-KISAN and MGNREGS Co-Exist? by Yamini Aiyar and Partha Mukhopadhyay
  • Schooling is not Learning by Yamini Aiyar
  • The Numbers Game: Suggestions for Improving School Education Data by Kiran Bhatty


  • Towards ‘Cooperative’ Social Policy Financing in India by Avani Kapur
  • Bridging the Local: Beyond the 73rd and 74th Amendments by Mukta Naik, Sama Khan and Shamindra Nath Roy
  • Interstate River Water Governance: Shifting the Focus from Conflict Resolution to Enabling Cooperation by Srinivas Chokkakula
  • The Future is Federal: Why Indian Foreign Policy Needs to Leverage its Border States by Nimmi Kurian


  • Multiply Urban ‘Growth Engines’, Encourage Migration to Reboot Economy by Mukta Naik
  • Regularizing Unauthorized Urban Industrial Areas by Partha Mukhopadhyay and Eesha Kunduri
  • The Challenge of Indian Cities and Female Labour Force Participation by Neelanjan Sircar

Regulation and Resources

  • Understanding Land Conflict in India and Suggestions for Reform by Namita Wahi
  • Protecting Water While Providing Water to All: Need for Enabling Legislations by Philippe Cullet
  • Safeguarding the Fragile Ecology of the Himalayas by Shyam Saran
  • Regulating New Technologies: Three Central Principles by Ananth Padmanabhan

Inclusive Citizenship

  • Courts, Tradition and Citizenship by Shylashri Shankar
  • In Need of Structural Repairs: The Social Justice Project by D. Shyam Babu
  • Safe and Dignified Sanitation Work: India’s Foremost Sanitation Challenge by Arkaja Singh and Shubhagato Dasgupta