Categories - Resources
2 posts

Resources – Employment Datafeatured

November 30, 2018

What is the state of employment in India? Data on this topic is very confusing because India is huge and very diverse. Also, a large part of the population does not have a single employer, regular wage-paying job. This means that any counting of employment has to necessarily make many assumptions. We help you navigate this complexity.


  1. Without a doubt, the best place to start is our InfoCapsule on the subject. We not only describe the complex reality of employment in India but also familiarize you with six popular discussions on this subject.

Coming soon

  1. A Task Force was set up by the Government of India for ‘improving job data’ in India. The report of the task force is short and very readable. It can be found here.

  1. Azim Premji University recently came out with the report “State of Working in India.” This readable report has data from various sources and also a good discussion of different issues.

Data sources

Given the reality of employment, in India agencies measuring it make assumptions. It is important to look at the full reports to understand these assumptions. Some prominent data sources are listed below

Household surveys

  1. NSSO under the Ministry of Statistics and Program Implementation carried out employment surveys every five years. The last survey is from 2012 and can be found here.

  1. Labor Bureau carried out annual surveys and the report for the fifth survey can be found here

  1. CMIE in association with BSE has been carrying out quarterly surveys and the reports for these can be found here

Enterprise surveys

Data from Enterprise surveys should be interpreted with caution as most surveys have a very limited sample frame. The report from Task Force on employment statistics has a good description of the limitation of these surveys

  1. The last economic census was carried out in 2013-14

  1. The seventh round Quarterly Employment Survey from labor bureau

EPF data

  1. The Employee Provident Funds Organization has started releasing data on Monthly additions to the payroll. This data can be found here


  1. The economist Surjit Bhalla and Thirthamoy Das have written many articles on why they consider the CMIE employment numbers to be incorrect and what the actual employment creation has been in the last 4-5 years. Their paper can be found here

  1. Estimates of Bhalla and Das have been countered by many people including CMIE’s Mahesh Vyas. His writings can be found in many publications including on the CMIE site itself.
  1. Economist Pulak Ghosh and Soumya Kanti Ghosh studied administrative databases such as EPFO and ESIC and tried to construct payroll data for India. A presentation from them can be found here

Many people have criticized the over interpretation of EPFO data. One such criticism can be found here

  1. HT has a good 5 part series on job data. Here is the link for part 2 where the women’s LFPR is discussed in detail. The other parts are worth reading too.

  1. Manish Sabrawal writes regularly on employment. One of his main arguments is that India’s problem is not lack of employment but lack of formal employment. His articles can be Googled.

Note: The links on this page are not maintained. In case of broken links use keyword searches to locate the correct link.

















Resources – Air Qualityfeatured

May 23, 2018

We went through many papers and reports in preparing our InfoCapsule “How can we breathe cleaner air?” Here is list of some of them in case you want to dwell deeper into the topic.

Overall picture

1. Without a doubt, the place to start is our InfoCapsule. Here is the link

2. This is an excellent place for understanding many different aspects of Air Pollution

Health Effects of pollution

3. The report from WHO, “Health Effects of Particulate Matter” is very readable and informative. Do note that the report is primarily for Europe where the PM levels are much lower than in India

4. In 2015, the Ministry of health and Family Welfare came up with a report on health effects of pollution. The report is also a good source for understanding different sources of pollution. The report title is “Report of the Steering Committee on Air Pollution and Health Related Issues.” The report can be found at various place including
Recommended maximum pollution levels

5. The WHO document referenced above gives the Air Quality Guideline (AQG) from WHO. The Indian levels can be found in a notification from Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) – National Air Quality Standards

Actual pollution levels

Figuring out the best time to go for a walk? Look at the real time data from stations near you. For policy data, look at aggregates.

6. Many agencies report pollution levels at a point of time. The most authoritative source is CPCB

7. SAFAR also has measuring stations in four cities. If you live in one of those cities, you may want to check this out

8. Indiaspend has installed measuring devices in many cities. Their on-line output can be found here.

9. We weren’t able to get a good resource for getting yearly averages and number of days the pollution levels crossed limits. This data is needed for policy understanding, this is an exception. However this is not measured data but inferred from satellite observations.

10. has a summary page drawing on real time data from various sources

11. recently came out with pollution estimates and their attribution to different sources for 20 cities. The estimates can be found here.

12. collects and stores all real time data from all over the world. If you are looking to get yearly averages for a particular station, this is the place to start.

13. You can use the Excel sheet made by to process the above raw data. The sheet can be found here

Attribution studies

14. What are the major contributions to pollution? How is this determined? This is a good place to start and to get links to 4 studies done on Delhi pollution.

15. For 20 other cities in India, this is a good link. Please also see the fact sheets for individual cities.

Other links

16. The Graded Action Response Plan from CPCB submitted to the honorable Supreme Court can be found here

Note: The links on this page are not maintained. In case of broken links use keyword searches to locate the correct link.