Implement Digital Direct Benefit Transfers: A DBT Readiness Index for the States of India
Both the central and state governments in India operate a vast array of cash and in-kind transfers to protect its poor. But these social protection schemes often suffer from substantial leakages and poor targeting, distort market functioning by subsidising prices and thereby impose significant fiscal stress without commensurate social benefits. India is seeking to port these subsidies into direct-to-beneficiary transfers, often called Direct Benefit Transfers or DBT. Implementing DBT should be a means to an end, not only to reduce leakages in the Indian subsidy system, but also to ensure that the targeted poor and vulnerable in society get timely transfers at low cost in time and money. In the Indian context DBT readiness is the ability of states/UTs to pursue government to citizen (G2C) and government to bank/business solutions through the use of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) viz. electronic transfer of cash or in-kind benefits from government to citizen or for effecting cashless in- kind transfers. Accurate targeting of beneficiaries due to Aadhar and biometric verification makes it feasible to avoid leakages due to ghost beneficiaries and to avoid leakages due to duplication errors . The DBT-Readiness of all Indian states and Union Territories (UTs) will be assessed both annually and quarterly by National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) over the next three years starting from 2016 to 2018 based on annual surveys. The quarterly assessment will be based off a combination of primary and secondary data available or made available by state/UT governments. States/UTs will be ranked relatively using the annual surveys. The quarterly rankings will be based off absolute index, which will help track states/UTs their own growth over time. In addition to the overall DBT assessment of states and UTs, this survey undertakes DBT Readiness of 10 Central Schemes.

Food Grain Stocking Policy for India
Pending legislation, which will guarantee access by the poor to a specified quantity of food grains, the National Food Security Bill stands to have a major impact on the food grain stocking policy in India. The Bill mentions cash transfers and issuing food coupons to eligible families. However, no concrete steps have been spelled out on this front. It is therefore supposed that the present system of procurement and storage of food grains by the Central and State government agencies shall continue. The successful implementation of the Act will clearly require that much larger stocks be held. Whether these stocks are held by the government or the private sector depends on new instruments being created, e.g., negotiable warehouse receipts-, on new institutions such as public-private partnerships in warehousing and on changes to the legal structure, especially the Essential Commodities Act and the Agricultural Produce Marketing (Regulation) Act

Evaluation Study on Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act
The objectives of the project were threefold: (1) to assess the implementation process, flow of funds, quality of assets, coverage of scheme, impact on livelihood, convergence issues, migration issues, extension of scheme to urban areas, record maintenance, capacity of implementing authorities, norms followed and involvement of PRIs; (2) to examine post construction maintenance aspects, different wages in different states and gender issues in payments; and (3) to review implementation of rules and regulations, and monitoring aspects.

South Asian Perspective on South-South Cooperation
The key objectives of this study are to bring about conceptual clarity by demystifying South-South Cooperation (SSC) in terms of its context, objectives, scope and policy framework. The study will explore the practicalities of SSC in South Asia by assessing their modalities and instruments and their effectiveness. Specific experiences of SSC through empirical evidence and case studies will be revisited and will consider how existing cooperation frameworks support learn from and build on these experiences. Another important aspect of the study is to contribute to the first Ministerial meeting of the Global Partnership on Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC) in Mexico.