Synopses & Reviews
This volume applies the interdisciplinary 'field economics' approach to poverty analysis.
The work is based on extensive fieldwork in the pre-urban edge of the sprawling metropolis of Delhi It assesses the economic, social, and political institutions and processes that structure the well-being, agency, and activities of the poor who are waste scavengers and involved with plastic recycling.
Using a mix of survey and ethnographic data, it tells the complete story of how the waste picker at the lowest level of the chain fares in comparison to other kinds of occupational groups engaged in different parts of the scavenging and recycling chain, as well as in other parts of the informal economy. It focuses on the following themes: how occupational choices are dictated by low caste status; how these groups negotiate and surmount market failures and state failures to create a viable informal economy supporting numerous livelihoods and businesses; and how these groups gain or lose from patronage links at the level of the state government and national political parties.
About the Author
Kaveri Gill is Senior Program Officer, Think Tank Initiative, International Development Research Centre, Delhi.
Table of Contents
List of Photographs
List of Tables
Figures, and Boxes
List of Abbreviations
2. The City of Delhi
3. Waste as Informal Sector Work: Measuring Income Poverty, Inequality, and Deprivation
4. Interlinked Contracts and Social Power: Patronage and Exploitation in the Waste Recovery Market
5. Exploitation or Entrepreneurship? Scrap Traders and the Economics of Survival in the Informal Economy
6. From Pigs and Pollution to Plastics and Progress: Recasting Low Caste Status through an Informal Market
7. 'Bourgeois Environmentalism', the State, the Judiciary, and the Urban Poor: The Political Mobilization of a Scheduled Caste Market;