SOAS University of London

SOAS South Asia Institute

Pitfalls of the pithead at a time when India's energy mix still needs coal

Pallavi Roy

Date: 14 November 2019Time: 7:00 PM

Finishes: 14 November 2019Time: 8:30 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: B103

Type of Event: Seminar


Coal will remain a part of the Indian energy mix in the medium term and that means policies for mitigating the huge social costs of mining are required even more urgently. More so for marginalised communities who conduct their lives near the pithead. The most critical challenge for the coal-mining sector is to question and recast the social contract in the sector, in whatever inadequate form that exists. Effectively any social contract has to internalize the externality. This is the principle where the creator of the costs (and the owner of the mine) has to adequately compensate the bearer of the cost, or the party affected by this change in ownership. Linked to the recasting of the social contract is the issue of an implementation deficit in India, which leads to a credibility deficit among affected communities in the sector towards powerful stakeholders. This is because the gap between policy and implementation remains wide in India.


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Pitfalls of the pithead at a time when India's energy mix still needs coal


Pallavi Roy is a lecturer in International Economics at the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy at SOAS. Her research focus is on the application of institutional economics and in particular the political settlements framework to problems of industrial policy, anti-corruption, commodity markets, the political economy of clientelism, and economic development generally. Her country focus includes the countries of South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal) as well as Nigeria and Indonesia.

Chair: Martin Lau

Drink reception will be held at BG02 Atrium from 6pm, prior to the seminar. 

The event is free to attend but registration essential. Click here to register.

Organiser: SOAS South Asia Institute and Centre of Law, Environment and Development

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Contact Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4390