S Chandrasekhar, & Ajay Sharma
Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, May 2014
With an urbanization level of 31.16 percent in 2011, India is the least urbanized country among the top 10 economies of the world. In addition, unlike other countries, the transition of workforce out of
agriculture is incomplete. This coupled with jobless growth in recent years has contributed to an increase in certain migration streams. While rural-rural migration continues to be the largest in terms of magnitude, we also document an increase in two-way commuting across rural and urban areas. Further, there are a large number of short term migrants and an increase in return migration rate is also observed.
Urbanization and Spatial Patterns of Internal Migration in India. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/276431141_Urbanization_and_Spatial_Patterns_of_Internal_Migration_in_India [accessed Aug 16, 2015].
Bhuvaneswari Raman, Mythri Prasad-Aleyamma, Rémi De Bercegol, Eric Denis, Marie-Hélène Zerah.
USR 3330 “Savoirs et Mondes Indiens” Working papers series no. 7; SUBURBIN Working papers series no. 2. 114 pages. 2015
This literature review aims at summarizing the state of knowledge related to small urbanised settlements. The significance of researching these localities can be inferred from the fact that a growing share of urban population lives in such agglomerations with a population above 10,000 and below 50,000 to 100,000 inhabitants. This fact is not limited to India and a large share of the urban population worldwide lives in small and medium cities, which are understudied. The same dearth of research applies to the Indian context, as will be evident in this review, despite the importance of the resilience of an urban system comprising a large number of small towns and the diversity of these settlements in terms of their economic base and their social structure. This literature review is structured around five themes: A) the first section lays out issues related to estimating the magnitude and sources of demographic growth in order to infer the contribution of small towns to urban dynamics; B) the second section on Small Towns: Sources of Growth explores the economic processes supporting the expansion of small towns, and debates the dominant vision of the relationship between urbanization and growth, as explained by the New Economic Geography; C) the third section focuses on the transformation of small town economies and social structures while examining practices of entrepreneurship, circulation of labour, social mobility as well as caste and gender inequalities; D) the fourth section on Land and territorial transformations focuses on the relation between property and entrepreneurship; and E) the last section on Governance makes sense of the literature on decentralization, government schemes, governance and the political economy of small towns. This review constitutes one of the steps undertaken within the Subaltern Urbanization in India project (www.suburbin.hypotheses.org) to bring back to the fore the research on small towns.
S Chandrasekhar and Ajay Sharma
Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai
January 2014, WP-2014-002 full text here
This paper seeks to understand what kind of economic activities are concentrated in which regions of India. Spatial concentration of jobs is measured by calculating the location quotient using information on the industry of work of the individuals in a region. The paper uses data from NSSO 2011-12 survey of employment and unemployment.
The present working paper by Anima Gupta is the first in the SUBURBIN Series.
It tackles a central question of the program: ‘What is an Urban Area?’
The working paper is based on a Master Thesis in Regional Planning from the School of Planning and Architecture (SPA), New Delhi conducted under the supervision of N. Sridharan and P. Mukhopadhyay in 2011. It provides a very informed and stimulating report based on an explicit methodology, in-depth fieldwork and an excellent usage of mapping techniques. The location of fieldwork is in the district of Bhopal, which includes the capital of Madhya Pradesh. In a very clear manner, Anima Gupta presents the international variations in the definition of “urban”, and the issues raised by the Indian definition. Then, her paper explores a palette of potential indicators to measure, divide and categorize urban and rural localities which open up an important debate on the notion of urbanity. A detailed analysis of eight selected localities in Bhopal’s district follows, based upon this multi-criteria approach in order to assess the level of urbanity of these settlements.
This analysis of a set of localities questions the institutional limits of the metropolitan area, its mode of governance, and the dependence of localized growth. It shows that in the submetropolitan environment, localities are very diverse: one locality can remain a village while another changes into a town. Furthermore, the existing official criteria for urbanisation are insufficient and incomplete in describing the character of settlements. The research shows that transformation depends on multiple factors, ranging from accessibility and location to situated historical capital and the size of the settlement is not necessarily a determinant of this transformation.
This is a CPR working paper written by Kanhu Charan Pradhan that you can download here.
Abstract: The unexpected increase in the number of census towns (CTs) in the last census has thrust them into the spotlight. Using a hitherto unexploited dataset, it is found that many of the new CTs satisfied the requisite criteria in 2001 itself; mitigating concerns of inflated urbanisation. The new CTs account for almost 30% of the urban growth in last decade, with large inter-state variations. They are responsible for almost the entire growth in urbanisation in Kerala and almost none in Chhattisgarh. Consequently, the estimated contribution of migration is similar to that in previous intercensal periods. Further, while some new CTs are concentrated around million-plus cities, more than four-fifths are situated outside the proximity of such cities, with a large majority not even near Class I towns, though they form part of local agglomerations. This indicates a dispersed pattern of in-situ urbanisation. A growing share of urban population in these CTs is thus being governed under the rural administrative framework, despite very different demographic and economic characteristics, which may affect their future growth.
This is a Suburbin working paper written by Julien Bordagi from French Institute of Pondicherry. It is a critical comment of some of the conclusions from Sainath Hindu articles. It shows the significant role of the small towns in the urban growth during the last decade and the growth decline of the main metropolitan areas .
These two working papers, have been written by Rémi de Bercegol.
The first one, highlights how the studies of small towns can help to the global understanding of urban area. The second focuses on the Indian literature and raises the question of the adequacy of urban policies in the case of small towns. See the link below (French Version only).
Small town and urban studies
Small Indian towns in the shadow of the greatest one
This is a IGIDR Working Paper written by S Chandrasekhar that you can download here.
This paper provides estimates of workers residing in rural (urban) India and commuting to urban (rural) areas for work. The estimates are based on National Sample Survey Organisation’s survey of Employment and Unemployment (2009-10). In 2009-10, a total number of 8.05 million workers not engaged in agriculture commuted from rural to urban areas for work while 4.37 million workers not engaged in agriculture commuted from urban to rural areas for work. It argues that the size of the rural and urban labour force should be adjusted to account for the workers who commute to a location different from their usual place of residence.