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Prof. Smita Srinivas (Columbia University), Research Affiliate

BACKGROUND: Economic and Industrial development, Institutional theories, regulatory institutions and technological change.

Member, American Economics Association;
Co-Chair 2008-'09, Global Planning Educators Interest Group (GPEIG), Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP); Rep., Faculty Women's Interest Group (FWIG), Northeast region, ACSP

Research interests: Institutional economics/political economy of technological change and industrialization, history, theories of technology and development, models of innovation, changes in industrial welfare and regulatory institutions.

Area interests on comparative history, theory, empirics: South Asia (esp. India), Western and Northern Europe (including Nordic, and especially Finland).

Prof. Srinivas has training in economics and economic development planning. She has over a decade of advisory economic and industrial development experience and has provided invited inputs to numerous programs and official reports of organizations including the ILO (labour), UNCTAD (trade and development), UNIDO (industrial development), the World Bank, and IAVI (vaccines). She has also worked with other, more grassroots-directed organizations focused on employment, gender, poverty and health including SEWA, WIEGO, Mahila Samakhya, the Aga Khan Development Network, and others. She has been an invited speaker at several venues including the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), at the ILO, and at several conferences.

TCLab is an economic development research and advisory program at Columbia University, providing inputs to governments, UN organizations, grassroots and urban and regional organizations. As Director of the Lab, Prof. Srinivas supervises international research and collaborations, and a team of several students from across the university. Most projects focus on industrial development, innovation and regulation, and include issues of employment, and social policy. The Technological Change Lab website features projects, affiliates, advisory board, and some working papers.

Prof. Srinivas has recently been an invited speaker at a 2009 Carnegie Mellon University and U-Pittsburgh event series on the Indian economy with Aravind Panagariya and others, at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development's (UNCTAD) expert group meeting on Least Developed Countries in March 2009, and in March 2009, at Brown University's Watson Center for International Affairs to speak on New Industrial Policies and the BRICSA countries. Other invitations include a 2008 UNESCO meeting in Montevideo on Science, Technology, Innovation and Social Inclusion; a UPenn-Brandies, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation sponsored workshop in 2007 as a member of the Indian diaspora and working towards Indian health policy reforms. She was also an attendee at a 2007 NSF-sponsored policy workshop on Science and Technology in the New Global Economy at the National Academies of Sciences.

In 2004, the government of India National Commission for Enterprises in the Unorganized Sector (NCEUS) invited her to join the Commission's efforts as a member/consultant on issues of social protection, technology and training. This and other invitations that she has been unable to accept have included a 2007 invitation from the Inter-Parliamentary Union to address parliamentarians in Geneva on the issue of women's employment and social protections.

She has published on industrial and technological change in several peer-reviewed venues including journals such as Theory and Society (forthcoming), Regional Studies, World Development, Technology and Society. She is primary author and co-author of two books published by the International Labour Organization (ILO): Learning from experience: A gendered approach to social protection for workers in the informal economy (Geneva: ILO, WIEGO 2000/2005 with Frances Lund), and Women Organizing for social protection, The Self-employed Women's Association's Integrated Insurance Scheme, India (Geneva: International Labour Office, STEP Programme, 2001). Lund and Srinivas (2000 WIEGO/ILO), was subsequently reprinted in 2005, a best-seller, according to the ILO.

She holds a Ph.D. from MIT in economic development and technology planning, has held pre-and post-doctoral fellowships at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. From 2004 to 2005, she was UNIDO Fellow at the Kennedy School and from 2002-2004, she was the Task Force Fellow with the United Nations Millennium Project's Task Force on Science, Technology, and Innovation (TF10). She holds prior degrees from the Graduate Institute of International Studies (HEI/Institut universitaire de hautes etudes internationales (HEI),Geneva, Switzerland, Yale University and Smith College in the U.S.

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For full bio, courses taught and Lab information, click here.


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