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In The Field

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‘In The Field’ is a show that attempts to capture India’s development story, as it happens, through a feature-style podcast that combines interviews, commentary, and debate.

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‘In The Field’ is a show that attempts to capture India’s development story, as it happens, through a feature-style podcast that combines interviews, commentary, and debate.

iTunes Ratings

11 Ratings
Average Ratings
10
0
0
1
0

iTunes Ratings

11 Ratings
Average Ratings
10
0
0
1
0
Cover image of In The Field

In The Field

Latest release on Sep 17, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 5 days ago

Rank #1: “You get scale and pace at the price of building decision making structures and trust.”

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The past decade has seen a proliferation of movements all over the world. Fighting for everything from racial equality, to end authoritarianism and corruption, for struggling farmers, for climate action, for net neutrality and to end sexual harassment. At the very heart of societal change very often, lies the NGO, that works alongside these movements, with the government, for the citizens, and thanks to funders. It’s these NGOs, that engage with the state, help deliver services, or make people more aware and empowered. But the NGO is constantly evolving , and more people take to the street to protest, where does this leave the NGOs? And when we talk about civil society, are we leaving anyone out?

Thanks to Harsh Mander, Ingrid Srinath, Rajni Bakshi, Dr Ranjana Kumari, Obalesh Bheemappa and our friend Tejas Pande.

In the Field is supported by Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies. Reach out to us at podcast@inthefieldindia.org.

Jul 02 2019

37mins

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Rank #2: "The five-year old will say OK, let’s stop eating seafood."

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In part two of our two parter on sustainability, climate change and consumption, we’re going find out about our relationship to the things we love - Like fish, coffee, travelling. These are things that are frequently talked about in relation to high consumption lifestyles, the kind that make climate change worse.

We all know that sustainable producers needs ethical consumers. Going beyond the label, how are organisations in the sector contending with issues such as livelihoods of small scale producers, value chains and their inclusion in global markets, environmental and biodiversity sustainability, and most importantly the changing power structures needed in the marriage between producers and consumers. Basically, what does it take to make the marriage work?

Featuring Chef Thomas Zacharias, Arshiya Bose from Black Baza Coffee, Dr John Kurien, Ganesh Nakhwa and Sumesh Mangalaserry.

In the Field is supported by Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies.

Apr 05 2019

35mins

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Rank #3: "Fishing is a hunter's job"

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In this special two-parter we’re talking about sustainability and consumption. And we’re starting with a story about fish, to understand how the twin forces, climate change and our ravaging consumption, are depleting the oceans. This is a story about a system of production that is in desperate need of rescue. At the heart of it are the fish themselves, but also the fisherworkers, a group that seems just as endangered.

Stay tuned for the second episode of this two parter next week!

Thanks to Divya Karnad, Ganesh Nakhwa, John Kurien and Srini Swaminathan.
Sounds: Sound Producer is Santhos Nataraja. Theme song by Hollis Coats. This episode was mixed and recorded at Third Eye Studios.

Show and art design by Bhushanraj.

In the Field is supported by Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies.

Mar 29 2019

31mins

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Rank #4: "The hardship takes a toll, you know."

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Worklife in India has many elements to it, and we see the whole gamut of experiences in India from workers working with little or no welfare to more privileged workers, and increasingly all of us are working more and for longer. How do we get to a point where we can experience the best possible version of worklife, where the worker has more power in deciding how to distribute time, rather than becoming a part of a system where work happens all the time?

Thanks to Apoorva Verma, Amrita Sharma, Hansika Singh, Kiran, Krishnavtar Sharma ji, Nishi Palnitkar, Priyanka Nair, Prottoy Aman Akbar, Rahul Srivastava, Reetika Revathy Subramanian, Ryan Bennett, Sanjay Patel and Shaheen Shasa.

In the Field is supported by Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies. Reach out to us at podcast@inthefieldindia.org.

Feb 28 2019

41mins

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Rank #5: Bonus Episode: Education as a right in India

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Welcome to this very special bonus episode of In the Field. Stay tuned for our next In the Field episode, coming very soon.

This episode is brought to you by Indus Action (www.indusaction.org), an organization working on a very specific tenet of the Right to Education Act - they’re trying to improve the way affirmative action is implemented in India’s private schools.

We make In the Field to to introduce you to the people trying to solve hard social problems, to their ideas and practices, and to the conversations that sometimes get stuck inside the social sector’s conference rooms. But some topics are better presented by the people who work on them. And this is why in series two, In the Field will feature bonus episodes that talk about specific themes in development, featuring the work of specific organizations and the issues they are driven by. We hope these bonus episodes will give listeners a way to learn about the most exciting, impactful work being done by committed organizations.

This episode is sponsored by Indus Action. For more information about their work on rights based issues in India and opportunities for engagement write to info@indusaction.org.

Feb 18 2019

14mins

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Rank #6: "We were people who were defined by these achievements in social development."

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Development work is full of models. And a famous one originated in Kerala - it was so famous it defined the state’s identity in so many ways; it was credited for producing a literate, educated population, for empowering women and an engaged, active public. But this is a stubborn old story, and one we’ll attempt to update. In this episode we trace back the history of Kerala’s development, find out how it got its world renowned reputation, and why it’s a land of mesmerising contradictions.

In 2018, floods devastated Kerala, but it allowed the development model to become a question for debate once again. A new Kerala is emerging from the legacy of its development history and its changing cultural and social landscape. And as messy as it looks right now, we think Kerala is still showing us the way.

Credits:
Thanks to Bala Menon, Bharati Menon, Dr J Devika, Devika Radhakrishnan, Daneesh, Dhanya, Josy Joseph, Mujib, Raghav Sharma, Dr Shashi Tharoor, Sumesh Mangalasseri, Varun Menon, Dr V Venu, Vidya Varma, Yamini and Gayatri Vijayan and all the folks who are a part of Resilient Kerala.

In the Field is a Vakku production. This episode is hosted and Produced by Radhika Viswanathan and Samyuktha Varma. Our Sound Producer is Santhos Nataraja. Soundscaping and sound design by Erwick d’Souza.

Our theme song is by Hollis Coats.

Show and art design by Bhushanraj.

This episode was mixed and recorded at Third Eye Studios.

Check out our show notes, transcripts and more information on www.inthefieldindia.org or reach out to us on social media. We’re @inthefieldindia.

In the Field is supported by Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies

Jan 31 2019

33mins

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Rank #7: “There is history in all our aspirations.”

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The youth are a prized population, for they represent the much talked about demographic dividend and so countries are supposed to nurture and help them develop. However, most approaches are instrumentalist, and see young people as mediums for prosperity. Or as a problem that needs a solution - through jobs, skills, education and even through settling down.

But it skirts around the hard questions of young India’s identity. How do the youth see themselves in society? And what are their individual hopes and dreams? In contrast to childhood, the long coming of age years is less about protecting innocence, wonder and imagination and more about the hard knocks of figuring out a path. Stopping and starting, disillusionment, and loss are often part of that journey.

In this episode, we take a look at what it’s like to be young, and what it is to grow up. Because you never fully get over the loss of what you give up in your youth. The feeling of remorse, being haunted by what you didn’t do, couldn’t do. The choices you didn’t make and the paths you couldn’t take? What is the preventative of that disease? Being able to peacefully reconcile those choices and being able to accept yourself and those around your for the choices you made - that is what growing up is.

Apr 26 2018

37mins

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Rank #8: “You’re really not condemning the whole system, you're pinpointing where the problem is"

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In development work, there are some spaces that need big ideas and radical new thinking, and there are others that require a different form of engagement - a slower, more steady, enabling presence. In these spaces, it’s about fixing something by actually just getting it to work - but that’s no small task.

Access to Justice is one of the harder spaces to fund and work in. From a development sector perspective, it seems ‘unfundable’, because it is hard to activate solutions for. The justice system might seem removed from our everyday lives, so what is our role in trying to make it better? In this episode, we take a look at two issues that mark its functioning: an apathetic system of legal aid and societal prejudice.

We have system of legal aid meant to help support the poorest and most disadvantaged in our country, but it is broken. And one of the consequences of this is a large number of undertrials but very few of them seem to be availing of legal aid to work their cases. It represents the scale of routine negligence and apathy. For every one case that is addressed properly through the legal aid system, there are probably a hundred, or even a thousand more that do not seem to get the assistance they need. In contrast, the worst cases of legal access being denied are the ones that we hear about often in the news because of the depravity of the crime, although they are a still a fraction of the crimes that should be reported. And many similar crimes may not even reach the legal system - because of societal prejudice.

The organisations we spoke to oil the gears to make the machine work better, and their work ranges from training lawyers to improve the quality of the service they provide, to working to make policy more responsive, to ensuring that there is monitoring and accountability built into the overall system.

And so, working with the justice system is about working with many structured pieces. It’s about improving legal awareness (the kind of education that makes us participate better) and educating every citizen about their fundamental rights. At ‘In the Field’, we think a lot about our privilege, and what it really means. How well, for example, do we know about our local government arms and agencies, and that we probably know even less about the police and the courts. In school, we learn about fundamental rights, and directive principles of state policy, in 10th standard civics we learn about writs and then memorize a bunch of latin words. But how well do we know what they mean and how they translate down to the daily workings of our institutions? This is something we within our power to change.

Here are two interesting reports that you may like to read: Tipping the Scales by Dasra and A Study of Pretrial detention in India by Amnesty International.

Apr 14 2018

35mins

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Rank #9: "And so what we eat on our plates starts to determine the fate of the soil of our land."

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Do we know where our food comes from? Does it come from down the road, or from a continent away? And do we really care? It’s all the same to us. Agriculture, especially food production is a topic deeply rooted in development. It’s too important to not pay attention to but it’s hard to know where to begin understanding it.

And we know this because conversations about food can get uncomfortable sometimes, especially while there are farmer protests taking place, when we realise our cities are inundated with garbage and detritus, much of which comes from packaged food. And we're still fighting problems like malnutrition.
That said, India's food production story has been an accomplishment. India moved from battling famine and high import prices to achieving food self sufficiency in a matter of a few decades. Yet, we now recognise what the long terms effects of rampant water use and intensive cultivation has done to our land and we also know who it left behind or didn't reach. While we are disconnected from those who grow our food, their lives and the rural economy, today, we're at a cusp of change and the question is how quickly are we going to get on board? We have the ability to shape our food future, to pay attention to the systems that bring us our food and close the gap between farmers, producers and consumers.

And so to make sense of the questions like why do we grow what we grow and how we grow, and to understand what sustainable food production could look like in the future we decided to go local. In this episode we meet our local resident water expert, our local ag-policy wonk, our local journalist who writes about Karnataka’s countrysides, and our local organic shop owner.

Mar 22 2018

36mins

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Rank #10: "But you already think what they can do at best is maybe make papad."

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A recent preoccupation within the development sector is the falling female workforce participation in India. More pronounced in rural India than in urban India, nevertheless a concern given that our country has made significant strides in education and economic growth as a whole.

The story of women and work in India is complex. It's connected to all of the big things: structural issues, patriarchy, and cultural values. In development, we're constantly trying to find ways to bring women into the economic sphere, as it is the most effective way to help empower. Yet, our approaches are often reined in by what we can design with limited evidence, by what we can measure, and by what we can sustain.

In Episode 7, we speak to an anthropologist, a lawyer, a development and human rights activist and campaigner, an economist and an archivist, and finally we meet an inspiring, independent, working woman and her son. We speak to all of them to understand what happens to aspirations, how women navigate life and opportunity, and how very few get to choose. And so this episode is about what we’re missing out in our attempts to make all women triumph

Mar 08 2018

39mins

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