In January 2021, NLSIU started a two-year research project aimed at how Indian regulatory bodies can reimagine their systems and processes for the 21st century. This cross-cutting research will be supported by Omidyar Network India, an investment firm focused on social impact, with a funding of Rs 2.7 crore.
Project Website: reg-gov.nls.ac.in
The project will generate original research aimed at ‘restocking the regulatory toolkit’ for India. The research will identify the administrative aspects and norms of regulatory authorities and their parent bodies that can be optimised to create autonomous, accountable and effective institutions. A key goal of the project is to assist policymakers and regulators in shaping specific modifications in regulatory frameworks and practices and make them more contemporary.
The proposed research will also look into the ability of these regulatory authorities in monitoring, identifying violations, conducting fair hearings and enforcing standards. The project will also delve into the extent of compliance with disclosure norms, and whether these norms are effective as a tool for greater transparency. The research will also explore what factors that can have an impact on the regulator’s capabilities.
Emphasis on Empirical Research
On the announcement, Sudhir Krishnaswamy, Vice Chancellor of NLSIU said that “NLSIU is committed to conducting rigorous empirical research on legal and bureaucratic institutions. Law and policy reform that builds on empirical research on regulatory governance is critical to building state capacity in India. Omidyar Network India’’s support will enable NLSIU researchers to make an original contribution to scholarship and policy on regulatory reform in India and beyond.”
Speaking about the grant, Shilpa Kumar, Partner, Omidyar Network India said: “By partnering with NLSIU, we hope to generate novel insights into the functioning of Indian regulators and build the knowledge infrastructure that policymakers can leverage to design strong and responsive institutions. A beneficiary of this exercise will be the soon-to-be-formed Data Protection Authority (DPA). The functioning of the DPA will help determine
whether Indians – especially the Next Half Billion, the five hundred million coming online for the first time – can exercise their right to privacy when they are online. Hence, we believe this project will have far reaching effects in the Indian regulatory environment.”
S Vivek, formerly a partner at the law firm Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, specialising in financial markets has joined to lead the NLS Research team that also comprises Dr Dakshina Chandra (Deakan University) and Rishika Rangarajan (NUJS, Kolkata). Read more about the team members here.
About Omidyar Network India
Omidyar Network India invests in bold entrepreneurs who help create a meaningful life for every Indian, especially the hundreds of millions of Indians in low-income and lower-middle-income populations, ranging from the poorest among us to the existing middle class. To drive empowerment and social impact at scale, we work with entrepreneurs in the private, nonprofit and public sectors, who are tackling India’s hardest and most chronic problems.
We make equity investments in early stage enterprises and provide grants to nonprofits in the areas of Digital Society, Education, Emerging Tech, Financial Inclusion, Governance & Citizen Engagement, and Property Rights. Omidyar Network India is part of The Omidyar Group, a diverse collection of companies, organizations and initiatives, supported by philanthropists Pam and Pierre Omidyar, founder of eBay.