GOVERNANCE FOR THE HUMANS: Designing Public Policy in India


ISBN 9789383723164


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ISBN 9789383723164


The book points the finger at an unlikely ‘whodunnit’ for governance failure – the design of rules of the game. Based on the author’s extensive experience and domain knowledge, the book demonstrates the relevance of a human centred policy in major areas of public policy such as donation of organs, road safety, smoking, female foeticide, licensing regulations and crime. It explains why:

A zero tolerance policy may end up in zero compliance;
Banning the sale of loose cigarettes is not a good idea if we want to discourage smoking;
Mandating speed governors can be more effective that putting rash drivers in jail;
Performance pay and similar incentives are unlikely to work for the bureaucracy.

The author proposes that the regime of ‘noisy’ rules and harsh penalties and sticks may need to be supplanted, by a rule design which makes it easy and convenient for people to comply. The book will be of great interest not only to the policy makers and other interested in good governance but also the countless others who are at the receiving end of mindless rules and regulations.

Born in 1941,R.N. Guptaearned his Master’s degree from the Delhi University and joined the Indian Administrative Service in 1964. He had a number of prestigious assignments, spanning a career of thirty five years, with the Government of India and State Governments of Punjab and Tripura. After retirement, he headed the organization The tribune for five years. He is currently associated with the Institute for Development and Communication, Chandigarh and is a member of the Punjab Governance Reforms Commission.


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