ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Social Science Research and Public Policy

The Third Eye of Governance: Rise of Populism, Decline in Social Research by Dr N Bhaskara Rao, New Delhi: Speaking Tiger, 2021; pp 301, 599, Paperback.


N Bhaskara Rao, the author of the book being reviewed here has been a pre-eminent applied social science researcher in India, especially in the field of communication and media studies, having played a pioneering and leadership role in organisations such as Operations Research Group (ORG) and Centre for Media Studies (CMS). In the book, Rao seeks to share his views and insights on social science research in India based on his work experience of more than five decades, including his work with various government ministries and committees and interaction with various prominent academicians, officials, and political leaders.

The book consists of a foreword by R A Mashelkar, preface by Arvind Singhal, followed by an “Introduction,” and nine other chapters by Rao. Unfortunately, none of these nine chapters have any title and most of them lack any thematic focus. The key point discussed in the book is that the relation between social science research and public policy in India needs to be strengthened. In this regard, Rao seeks to trace the trajectory of this relation in India since the post-independence period. Rao observes that India embarked on a process of “planned development” after independence in which social science research was considered important. However, the role and relevance of social science research towards formulation and implementation of public policies in India appears to have seen a decline since then and Rao attempts to discuss the reasons for the same. In this regard, Rao calls for a rejuvenation of social science research in India, so as
to contribute actively to the country’s development process.

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Updated On : 23rd Oct, 2021
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