About us

What we do?

The ODRIIS combines different tools through a series of projects to help understand these socio-economic changes under different lights:

  • We have been collecting quantitative panel data on households and individuals in rural South India via the NEEMSIS survey or the RUME survey.
  • We also use a variety of socio-economic methods (financial diaries, village monographs, life stories, video documentaries, etc). See an overview of our projects here.

Beyond the regional analysis, the ODRIIS intends to contribute to the theoretical renewal of the concepts of labour, networks, skills, debt and financialisation.

Who are we?

The ODRIIS Observatory (Observatory of Rural Dynamics and Inequalities in South India) is housed by the research programme ‘Household vulnerabilities, labour and socioeconomic dynamics’ in the Social Department of the French Institute of Pondicherry (IFP).

ODRIIS was born from the crossroads of two interdependent social sciences programmes:

  1. Work, finances & Social Dynamics coordinated by Isabelle Guerin since 2003, focusing on financial practices and debt bondage in South India
  2. Labour, Skills, Social networks and Mobility in India (LAKSMI) coordinated by Christophe Jalil Nordman since 2016 analysing the link between labour, skills, social and migration dynamics as well as social networks formation in India

As an institutional structure of these two programmes, ODRIIS has become a multidisciplinary Observatory of Rural Dynamics and Inequalities in South India. It analyses how structural changes in contemporary India are reshaping the organisation of work, social hierarchies and household livelihoods.

Contemporary South India is characterised by contrasting dynamics: rapid economic growth, a boom in the consumer credit market, strong demands from Dalit movements, persistence and even reinforcement of gender inequalities, etc. The observatory aims at studying these socio-economic changes in the long run: reconfiguration of social structures, employment, skills, migration, financial services, debt and wealth.

Where do we work?

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