The Centre for Policy Research (CPR) is holding a one day symposium on Democracy and Development in India on February 19, 2013 at CPR’s Conference Hall.
The format will be as follows. There will be four lead presentations, setting the stage and outlining different facets of the relationship between democracy and development in India. The program is attached. This will be followed by a discussion, to which we hope you will contribute. Your arguments and expertise will be immensely important to enriching the discussion. We will have some distinguished colleagues from Brazil, South Africa and the U.K. join us in the discussion. Participants include Anne Applebaum, the distinguished author of Gulag and the Iron Curtain, now head of the Legatum Institute, United Kingdom, Ann Bernstein, from Centre for Development Enterprise, South Africa, and Simon Scwartzman, distinguished economist and policy advisor from Brazil, and Adrian Wooldridge of the Economist. Our partner institutions are Legatum, CDE and IETS, Brazil.
Just to set the context of this discussion. The purpose of this exercise is to come to some understanding of the ways in which actually practised democracy helps or hinders the process of development. The discussion is framed with the assumption that democracy is normatively desirable. However, in recent times, scepticism has been expressed about the limitations of the actual practise of democracy in addressing important developmental challenges. This discussion seeks to analytically examine the basis for this scepticism, and to probe deeper how democracies might overcome the limitations of their current practice. In the course of the discussion we hope to see if there can be a “democratic consensus” that is possibly an alternative to both the Beijing and Washington Consensus. Is there something about the practice of democracy in India, Brazil and South Africa that can be the basis of thinking anew the relationship between democracy and development? This is the first of three conversations, and we will produce a series of papers and a final report after the conversations in Brazil and South Africa.