I am in contact with Prof. Takayoshi Kusago from 2008. We met for the first time in Lima in 2009 and discussed about possible collaboration.
In 2010, we contributed one joint paper to the International Conference of the Human Development and Capability Association (HDCA) at the University of Jordan, Amman. This work was supported by KAKENHI (20530436). This is my first involvement with ‘KAKENHI- Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research’. The paper is available for download – please click here.
We decided to work on empirical applications of Capability Approach and we tried for a fellowship from JSPS, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. We have been successful in 2010. I have been awarded ‘FY 2010 JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship for Foreign Researcher (P 10316)’ to work (with Prof. Kusago) at the Faculty of Sociology, Kansai University, Osaka. The topic of our research has been “Capability and Women’s Well-being in India and Japan”. The tenure of my research was one year: 22 November 2010 – 21 November 2011.
After joining Kansai University, we applied for KAKENHI. And we have been successful (Grant No. 2200316). With JSPS and KAKENHI we finally worked on the above-mentioned topic as well as on methodological issues in computation of (index of income in) Human Development Index and Gini coefficient.
Capability and Women’s Well-being in India and Japan
Abstract: Capability approach is a framework for the evaluation of individual welfare in terms of their functionings and capabilities, which are defined as an individual’s actual and potential activities and states of being respectively. Thanks to Amartya Sen when we conceptualise welfare as standard of living or quality of life, our focus of attention shifts from merely income or consumption to a wide range of indicators, which reflect well-being in different dimensions of life. The objective of this presentation is to focus on achievement of Indian and Japanese women within the sphere of reproductive life recognising freedom of choice in matters of reproduction and its possible interaction with individual and household characteristics as well as economic, social and environmental factors.
The study applies the tools of matrix algebra, fuzzy sets theory and binary-multivariate logit regression analysis to fulfill its objectives utilising data from Indian National Family Health Survey 2006 and Japanese General Social Survey 2008. We have identified quadruplicate possibilities in regard to achievements in reproductive life, one of which strongly depicts the ideal condition or reproductive freedom. 25.11 % mothers in India and 15.48 % mothers in Japan experience this condition. The similar other condition, which is closely associated with the first too depicts an ideal condition, but somewhat weakly. 11.71 % mothers in India and 14.68 % mothers in Japan experience this situation. Of the remaining two, one surely indicates lack of reproductive freedom. 30.22 % mothers in India and 8.61 % mothers in Japan suffer in this category. The final one shows a condition with peculiarity. It is somewhat opposite to the condition of lack of freedom. 32.97 % mothers in India and 61.24 % mothers in Japan remain in this category. Peculiarity in this category warrants meaningful exploration. Multivariate analyses throw some more light on the conditions described above.
In order to disseminate our research work as well as to find future partners for collaborative research, we visited Cambodia and Vietnam. Our mission began with the visit of University of Cambodia & Asia Economic Forum, Phnom Penh on 05 September 2011. They arranged a meeting to explore possibilities of collaboration with us followed by a Public Lecture addressing a big audience from student, teacher and learned communities. In the morning and afternoon of 06 September 2011, we had meetings and presentations at the Pannasastra University of Cambodia, Phnom Penh and the Royal University of Phnom Penh respectively.
In Hanoi, a meeting and a special Seminar were organised by the Vietnamese Academy of Social Sciences, Institute of Human Studies on 08 September 2011. The Academy also organised similar meeting and Seminar in Ho Chi Minh City on 15 September 2011 at the Southern Institute for Sustainable Development in association with its Centre for Gender and Family Studies. In between, 13 September 2011 has been made remarkable by the University of Social Sciences and Humanities – Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh City by organising a Seminar with local and international participants.
We also made presentations at the Graduate School of International Development, Nagoya University on 20 October 2011 and at the Third Pre-Workshop of the 8th International Conference of the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences: “Catastrophe and Justice”, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan on 12 November 2011 respectively.