research and policy advocacy for health & wellbeing in India.

Sanitation

Exploring the causes and consequences of widespread open defecation in India

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Sanitation

Social Inequality

Understanding how social discrimination impacts child and maternal health in rural India

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Social Inequality

Maternal Health

Exploring challenges and policy responses to adequate nutrition in motherhood to improve child health

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Maternal Health

Environment

Understanding the health consequences of climate change and air pollution, and exploring policy responses.

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Environment

Notes from the Webinar on ‘Gender and Mental Health in Bihar and India: Developing tools for effective measurement’

r.i.c.e, in collaboration with the International Growth Centre (IGC), organised a webinar titled “Gender and Mental Health in Bihar and India: Developing tools for effective measurement”.  The webinar covered recent research on mental health along various dimensions, including the measurement of mental health through the use of phone surveys, the prevalence of poor mental health among marginalized groups, mental distress due to discrimination and exclusion in higher education, and the mental health consequences of gender discrimination in the home.

Here is the list of topics covered, links to speakers’ presentation and papers for those interested in exploring the issue.

Diane Coffey: Diane’s presentation was titled “Measurement of population mental health: Evidence from a mobile phone survey”. She discussed the feasibility of measuring mental health in population-based mobile phone surveys and which questions are best suited to the phone survey medium. Slides from her presentation can be accessed here. You can read the full paper here.

Aashish Gupta: Aashish’s presentation was titled “Caste, religion, and mental health in India”. His research presents population-level evidence that Dalits and Muslims have worse mental health in India. His findings point towards the need for stronger stances against discrimination and violence.

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Webinar on ‘Gender and mental health in Bihar and India: Developing tools for effective measurement’

r.i.c.e is delighted to invite everyone for a webinar titled ‘Gender and mental health in Bihar and India: Developing tools for effective measurement’ The webinar is being organized in collaboration with the International Growth Centre (IGC).

Agenda: This webinar will share recent research on mental health along various dimensions, including the measurement of mental health through the use of phone surveys, the prevalence of poor mental health among marginalized groups, mental distress due to discrimination and exclusion in higher education, and the mental health consequences of gender discrimination in the home.  Following the research presentations, experts will discuss mental health policy and the state of implementation of India’s National Mental Health Act to date.

Date: July 10th, 2020 (IST) / July 9th, 2020 (US Pacific)

Time: 9am to 12pm (IST) / 8:30pm to 11:30pm (US Pacific)

Webinar Program: Click here for program details

Registration: Please register here.  After filling out the form, you will receive a confirmation email with a link to the webinar.

Read more about r.i.c.e’s research on mental health:

-Using mobile phone surveys to measure levels, trends, and disparities in mental health (Working Paper,

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Check out Lovey’s photo essay on Barriers to Clean Fuel Use published in EPW!

The Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojna reportedly provided 80 million households in India with LPG connection by the end of 2019. However, recent studies have found that access to LPG cylinder hasn’t led to a proportionate increase in the LPG use among rural households. What prevents households to use LPG, which is easier to cook on and has significant health benefits?

Lovey vividly demonstrates the many barriers to clean fuel use through a series of photos captured during her fieldwork in Uttar Pradesh. Take a look at her photo essay published recently in the Economic and Political Weekly!

 

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Accountability Initiative’s and r.i.c.e.’s paper got published in EPW!

Since October 2014, the Government of India has worked towards the goal of eliminating open defecation by 2019 through the Swachh Bharat Mission. In June 2014, the results of a survey of rural sanitation behaviour in North India were first reported. The results from a late 2018 survey that revisited households from the 2014 survey in four states—Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh—are presented. Although rural latrine ownership increased considerably over this period, open defecation remains very common in these four states. There is substantial heterogeneity across states in what the SBM did and how. These outcomes suggest the need for a transparent, fact-based public dialogue about the SBM, its costs and benefits, and its accomplishments and means.

Get the paper here!

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EPW published Payal and Nikhil’s paper on Caste Prejudice & Infection!

In light of India’s continuing efforts to reduce maternal
mortality, why government hospitals continue to be
dangerously unhygienic, posing serious infection risks to
patients, is explored. Through interviews and
observations at public hospitals in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar,
and Madhya Pradesh, we find that unhygienic practices
and behaviours by health staff abound, leading to an
environment with high potential for infection. Deep
caste prejudice against cleaners prevents the
professionalisation of their work, leaving them
overburdened and under-equipped to maintain
standards of hygiene. Casteist notions of cleanliness also
weaken rigorous implementation of infection control
measures by hospital staff. Rather than addressing these
deeper issues, antibiotics are routinely prescribed as a
shortcut to deal with the risk of hospital infection.

You can get the paper here!

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Prof. Amit Thorat, who is also a r.i.c.e. affiliate, interviewed for EPW’s podcast show

Prof Amit Thorat, who teaches at JNU and is also a visiting researcher at r.i.c.e., with his colleague Dr. Omkar Joshi, who is a doctoral scholar at the University of Maryland, was interviewed for the Economic and Political Weekly’s podcast show Research Radio. In the show, Prof Thorat and Dr Joshi talk about social groups in India that have a higher proportion of individuals who practice untouchability. To learn more about caste and the discriminatory practice of untouchability in India, and about the methods these researchers used to understand it, you can listen to the show here.

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