Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Output maters in social sectors as inputs matters in agriculture

  • The recently released Annual Survey of Education Report serves as an important reminder of India’s greatest challenge: converting increased financial outlays to improved development outcomes. Since 2004, India’s education budget has more than doubled, increasing from Rs 152,947 crore in 2004-05 to Rs. 372,813 crore in 2009-10. For the same period, ASER has tracked learning outcomes — and found that learning levels have remained depressingly stagnant. Nearly half the children in Standard 5 are still unable to read a Standard 2 text.

  • This outcome failure is not unique to education; nearly every social sector suffers the same fate. What explains the status quo?

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