A critical puzzle characterizing the issue of child undernutrition in India is the simultaneous coexistence of higher level of income per capita and a very low reduction in the level of underweight in children. Such paradox opens up the space for discussing the traditionally assumed linkage between income-poverty and undernutrition as well as food intervention as the main focus of policies designed to fight child hunger. Also, it unlocks doors for evaluating the role of an alternative economic approach in explaining undernutrition, such as the Capability Approach (henceforth: CA). The CA argues for widening the informational basis to account not only for resources but also for variables related to liberties, opportunities and autonomy in pursuing what individuals value. The present research contributes to such reasoning through a measurement exercise particularly aimed at deepening the investigation of non-traditional determinants of child undernutrition, namely women's status and gender inequality at the household level. Thus, the analysis is applied on an informational space purposely collected by the author in the village of Sankraud, in Baghpat district, in the State of Uttar Pradesh India from March to April 2010. Data covers both income-related variables, non-monetary variables stemming from the CA. In particular, the informational basis includes also a Time Use module to deepen the investigation of gender issues within the household.
Keywords: Time-use data; Capability approach; India
Biography: Dr. Cecilia Tinonin is a PhD in Agricultural Economics and Statistics at the University of Bologna, Italy. Previously, she graduated in Development Studies from Unibo with summa cum laude. During her academic studies, she also undertook various trainings at the United Nations, the European Commission and the Italian Embassy to Namibia. Within the field of development economics, her special focus is on the Capability Approach and Time Use data.