Research Themes

NCAER Spotlight

Growth, Macro, Trade, and Economic Policy

Analyses macroeconomic issues, highlights obstacles to growth and provides policy solutions.

Investment Climate, Industry, Infrastructure, Land, Labour, and Urban

NCAER is at the forefront of research aimed at attracting investment and developing infrastructure.

Agriculture and Rural Development, Natural Resources, and Environment

Rural Development is a priority sector for India, NCAER works extensively in this area.

Poverty, Equity, Human Development, and Consumers

Reducing poverty and improving human development in India drive a lot of NCAER's research work.


  • Mission & Vision
  • Legacy
  • Governing Body
  • Director General
  • People
  • Library
  • Annual Reports
  • Careers
  • NCAER Microsites
Established in 1956, NCAER is India’s oldest and largest independent, non-profit, economic policy research institute. Six decades in the life of a nation is a long time. It is even longer in the life of an institution. But the promise of NCAER—to ask the right questions, gather good evidence, analyse it well, and share the results widely—has endured. India has achieved much, and much remains undone. As the economy has changed, so too has NCAER, to continue to help understand India’s rapid economic and social transformation. As newer and more complex economic challenges emerge, NCAER will have to do more to keep its promise. To do this well, that is NCAER’s promise renewed.   NCAER’s work falls into four thematic areas: Growth, Macro, Trade, and Economic Policy  Investment Climate, Industry, Infrastructure, Labour, and...
NCAER’s roots lie in Prime Minister Nehru’s early vision of a newly-independent India needing independent institutions as sounding boards for the government and the private sector. Remarkably for its time, NCAER was started in 1956 as a public-private partnership, both catering to and funded by government and private industry.  NCAER’s first Governing Body included the entire Cabinet of economic Ministers and the leading lights of the private sector, including names like C. D. Deshmukh, J.R.D. Tata, John Mathai, and Asoka Mehta.  The Ford Foundation provided strong financial support in the early years, combined with support from the Finance Ministry and Tata Sons.  On October 31, 1959, Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru laid the foundation stone for the current iconic campus designed by Harvard-trained architect, A. P. Kanvinde. In doing so, he laid...
Over nearly six decades, NCAER’s member-elected Governing Body has included almost every prominent Indian economist and industrialist, including former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh as a member during 1976-82, and Ratan Tata as President during 1994-98. NCAER’s current Governing Body is headed by Mr. Nandan M Nilekani, ex- Chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India and former CEO of Infosys Ltd.  At present, Dr Poonam Gupta is the Director General of the National Council of Applied Economic Research.
Dr Poonam Gupta joined the NCAER its new Director General on July 1, 2021. Prior to joining NCAER, she was Lead Economist, Global Macro and Market Research, International Finance Corporation (IFC); and Lead Economist for India at the World Bank. Her erstwhile appointments include the Reserve Bank of India Chair Professor at National Institute of Public Finance and Policy (NIPFP); Professor at Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER); Associate Professor, Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics; and Economist at the International Monetary Fund.  
NCAER's legacy, data-capacities and high-quality research work have been built on the strength of its people. As the landscape for think tanks in India changes with the entry of newer not-for-profit and for-profit players, new private universities, consulting firms, rating agencies, data firms, and international think tanks wanting to establish an onshore presence in India, NCAER is committed to investing in its human capital.  
The NCAER Library is one of India’s premier research libraries in applied economics. Set up in 1956 when NCAER was established, the library has provided solid research support for almost 60 years to NCAER’s researchers and to policy makers, researchers, consultants, students and others from all over India and overseas. The NCAER Library’s physical collections include approximately 28,000 printed volumes and over 34,000 Government of India and state government official reports,15,000 other documents, and an increasing collection of resources in electronic format. NCAER subscribes to more than 270 serial and periodical titles. It also provides access to multiple online databases. NCAER’s collection of Indian economics documents and economic data, going back to soon after India’s independence, is unparalleled in its depth and breadth.    The library...
NCAER’s Annual Report is a repository of information about the year that was - chronicling significant milestones and offering a window into the wide range of research activities and events in the past year. The Annual Report serves as an indispensable resource, both internally and externally, to get acquainted with NCAER's people and work.
NCAER’s people are its most valued asset and we are continually in the search for the best people in our field. NCAER strives to provide a work environment conducive to intellectual and professional development. For students, NCAER offers exciting and rewarding internships that will serve as the ideal platform for a career in economics. NCAER is an equal opportunity employer. Women are encouraged to apply.    
Decentralization, Rural Governance and Inclusive Growth: Linkage and implications Decentralization, Rural governance and Inclusive Growth: Linkage and Implications is the main theme of the research at National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), New Delhi. This research project is funded by International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada, under the program "Globalization, Growth and Poverty". The major focus of work is to analyse various aspects of rural governance in an attempt to establish whether decentralization of governance and the creation of appropriate institutions are effective in achieving inclusive and pro-poor growth.      Agricultural Outlook and Situation Analysis Reports for Food Security   The need for monitoring and analysis of emerging food scenarios is important for India both because of significant dependence...