Vidhya Soundararajan

Designation: 
Assistant Professor
Email: 
Education: 

Ph.D., Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University, 2016

M.Sc., Economics, Madras School of Economics, India. Batch-topper (gold medal), 2008

B.Tech., Information Technology, Madras Institute of Technology, India, 2005

Affiliation:

Assistant professor, Economics group, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Bombay, 2021-

Fellow, Global Labor Organization, 2021-present

Research Interests: 

Applied microeconomics, Labour economics, Development Economics.

Topics: 

Firm behaviour, productivity estimation, import competition, contract labour, minimum wages, antitrust laws.

Publications: 
  1. "Contract Employment in Developing Countries,” (with Arnab K. Basu and Nancy Chau). accepted, Handbook of Labor, Human Resources and Population Economics, K. Zimmermann (ed.). 2021. 
  2. Contract Employment as a Worker Discipline Device (with Arnab Basu and Nancy Chau). Journal of Development Economics, 149 (2021): 102601.
  3. Political Activism as a Determinant of Clientelistic Transfers: Evidence from an Indian Public Works Program (with Yanyan Liu and Nancy Chau). European Economic Review, 132 (2021): 103631.
  4. Estimating Small Area Population Density using Satellite Imagery: An Application to Sri Lanka (with Ryan Engstrom and David Newhouse). PLOS ONE, 15(8): e0237063
  5. Wage Fairness in a Subcontracted Labor Market (With Nancy Chau and Arnab Basu). Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization. 168 (2019): Pages 24-42.
  6. Heterogeneous Effects of Imperfectly Enforced Minimum Wages in Low-Wage Labor MarketsJournal of Development Economics (2019) 140 (2019): 355-374.
  7. Construction workers: amending the laws for more safety. Economic and political weekly. Vol -XLVIII No. 23, June 08, 2013.
  8. Regional inequality compared: the cases of India and Brazil (with Alexandre de Freitas Barbosa and Gerry Rodgers) Indian Journal of Economics, Special Centennial Issue. Vol. XCVI, No. 383. 2016.

Books:

Rodgers, Gerry and Soundararajan, Vidhya. 2016. Patterns of Inequality in the Indian Labour Market 1983-2012. Academic Foundation and Institute for Human Development.

Media writings:

  1. How to Successfully Set a Minimum Wage in India, Oct 24 2018. Live Mint.                        
  2. The MSME sector is critical in times of Covid-19, Apr 03, 2020, Hindustan Times
  3. Disentangling the labour laws debate: What does the evidence really say?, May 25, 2020. Hindustan Times
  4. Need focus on removing obstacles to ‘good’ jobs, Jan 20, 2021, Hindustan Times
Awards: 

Grants and Fellowship:

  • Ministry of Corporate Affairs (India) grant (USD 45, 179), 2020-2021  
  • IIMB young faculty research chair, 2016-19
  • Exploratory Research Grant, Private Enterprise Development in Low-Income countries (PEDL), an initiative by CEPR, (co-PI, with Nancy Chau): USD 24,600, 2015-16
  • Research Grant, IFPRI-3ie (Team member, with significant contribution to proposal writing; with Nancy Chau and Yanyan Liu): USD 21,733, 2014-15
  • Exploratory Research Grant, the Tata-Cornell Initiative (PI): USD 5,000, 2012
  • First prize for the best manuscript award at Dyson School, Cornell University, 2016
  • Cornell Graduate School Fellowship (covers tuition and graduate stipend for one year), 2010-11
  • Merit-fellowship at Madras school of Economics, 2007-08

For more info visit : www.vidhyasrajan.com