Niti Aayog
Cities around the world are grappling with the problem of traffic congestion. App-based taxi services have proliferated at a rapid pace, yet their impact on the quality of urban mobility remains unclear. Ride-sharing services have a theoretically ambiguous impact on mobility: On the one hand, they may reduce private car ownership, improve utilisation, while on the other hand, they may draw commuters from public transport into using these more convenient modes of transport. Using granular route level traffic data from Google Maps and a natural experiment design, which exploits driver strikes in Delhi as an exogenous shock, researchers at SRITNE show that congestion was lower in the absence of ride-sharing services. They also document the significant increase in ridership in the Delhi Metro and other high occupancy vehicles during this period. The results have important implications for transport policy, including providing incentives for high occupancy and demand responsive mobility, enabling effective business models in shared mobility, and investing in urban planning for modal shifts.
eGovernance
The Government of India’s National eGovernance Plan (NeGP), since 2006, identifies CSCs as the key access points for delivery of various e-governance and business services to citizens in rural and far-flung areas of the country.
 
Drawing on an extensive survey of the literature, including prior impact assessment studies commissioned by the GOI and related academic research, researchers at SRITNE are conducting an impact assessment of the Common Service Centre (CSC) e-governance Services scheme on rural communities (especially on Village Level Entrepreneurs & Citizens). The evaluation spans CSCs
across 10 Indian states in the four regions in the country - (North: Punjab & Uttar Pradesh; East: Bihar, West Bengal,
Assam and Orissa; South: Telangana and Karnataka; West: Maharashtra and Gujarat).
 
The study will yield important insights on the opportunities and critical success factors for CSCs and in turn, guide policy interventions that help VLEs overcome contextual constraints and improve their performance.
Microsoft
Agricultural output per worker in India significantly lags developed and other ascendant economies of the world. Failure to increase labour productivity in agriculture constrains economic growth by raising the costs of shifting labour and other resources from the farm to the factory as development proceeds.
 
Advancements in ICT can potentially increase the incomes of the significant number of households engaged in agriculture by improving their output and how much they get for their output. More recently, leading-edge technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), satellite imagery, and advanced analytics are used to empower farmers with information that increases their crop yield and allows them better price control.
Researchers at SRITNE are engaged in the assessment of one such digital agriculture initiative – AI based crop management. Microsoft R&D India
 
Limited, in partnership with ICRISAT and UPL Limited, is currently working with
a network of 3000 farmers across 50 districts in Telangana, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh to pilot AI-based sowing and pesticide advisories. The researchers will compare outcomes – yield, multiple cropping index (or diversity of crops in
the cultivated area), and land rentals – between the farmers who receive the intervention and those who do not - to offer insights into factors that aid adoption of digital initiatives and how these initiatives increase agricultural productivity and allied economic outcomes.
Government of Telangana
An increasing number of governments in emerging markets are implementing technology solutions in schools aimed at improving teaching effectiveness and student learning outcomes. However,
there is insufficient evidence that providing access to these technologies, including computers, the Internet, educational applications/e-books, has a significant effect on student performance. The Government of Telangana launched an initiative called Telangana State Computer Literacy and Skills in Schools (TS-CLASS) to promote digitisation of education in government high schools.
 
Researchers at SRITNE, through detailed qualitative interviews and surveys of students, teachers and administrators
at over 100 government schools, are seeking to provide insights into the impact of digitization of education, heterogeneity in such impact and the mechanisms underlying impact. Specifically, the study will:

 

  1. Understand the differential motivations and beliefs of students and teachers regarding various technology tools in the classroom
  2. Document patterns of adoption of digital tools across schools and amongst teachers and students within schools
  3. Evaluate the impact of technology adoption and the drivers of such impact
State of Innovation in Firms
Innovation is fundamental to the competitiveness of modern firms. The importance of innovative capabilities is especially pronounced in sectors where significant and pervasive digitisation is creating new opportunities for product differentiation and enhancement, transforming business models, and ushering in a new wave of competition from digital entrepreneurs and technology giants. Firms cannot ignore the imperative to innovate in this new disruptive business environment. However, that you cannot improve what you cannot measure also renders it imperative to continually measure innovation performance and capabilities of the firm.
 
Researchers at SRITNE provide the detailed assessment of the state of innovation in firms. For e.g., for a large pharmaceutical firm with global drug development operations in India, through archival data, surveys and detailed qualitative interviews with company leadership, SRITNE conducted a detailed assessment of their innovation strategy, culture, and metrics, amongst other parameters to understand the magnitude and nature of innovations in the firm and their contribution. Innovation performance and potential are typically articulated at three levels: (a) Individual; (b) Team and (c) Organization. Such assessments that document key enablers and constraints to the observed innovation performance are complemented with benchmark information on innovation in the sector, established through the center’s innovation and technology management surveys.
 
Our analyses help the firm design more accurate and successful interventions for ongoing innovation and diffusion of ideas in the firm. They are critical to assessing and designing the future innovation trajectory of a firm.
Google
Researchers at SRITNE helped assess the impact of the Digital Garage programme conducted by Google in India. As part of the program, small and medium businesses (SMBs) are receiving training in digital and social marketing through a 6-hour self-paced online model as well as through a 1-day in-person offline training programme that is delivered by FICCI. The goal of the study is to identify the impact of digital and social marketing training on:
 
  1. The changes in mix of marketing orientation and practices of SMBs post the Digital Garage program,
  2. The intensity of use of digital and social marketing strategies by SMBs,
  3. the operational and financial performance impact of adoption of digital and social marketing practices,
  4. The efficacy of online, offline and online + offline training in impacting the adoption and performance impact of the Digital Garage program.