There has been little investigation into whether the “social gradient to health”—whereby people belonging to groups higher up the social ladder have better health outcomes than those belonging to groups further down—exists in developing countries like India. The relative strengths of economic and social status in determining the health status of persons in India is evaluated using the National Sample Survey Office data set for 2004 and 2014. This is evaluated with respect to two health outcomes: the age at death and the self-assessed health status of elderly persons.

The Economic Survey of Maharashtra is a concerted endeavor of Directorate of Economics and Statistics, Planning Department, which is prepared every year and the same is presented in the Budget Session before the State Legislature. The present publication for the year 2017-18 is the 57th issue in the series.

Large-scale survey data are used to question the most public claims about food habits in India. It is found that the extent of overall vegetarianism is much less—and the extent of overall beef-eating much more—than suggested by common claims and stereotypes. The generalised characterisations of “India” are deepened by showing the immense variation of food habits across scale, space, group, class, and gender.

The last budget of the Modi government comes against the backdrop of severe agrarian and rural distress. It is also the last opportunity to undo the damage caused to the rural economy by this government in the last four years. While the government has finally acknowledged the gravity of the situation, its response has been limited to empty rhetoric without any financial commitment. Going by the past record of the government, it is clear that it is serious neither in its commitment nor in its intent.

The Government of India’s NFHS–4 offers the best new data on open defecation in rural India to be eleased in over a decade. Although open defecation has become less common than it was 10 years ago, it is still highly prevalent, with more than half of rural households reporting open defecation. On average, change has been slow, even during the period of the Swachh Bharat Mission.

The UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) released an updated version of its statistical yearbook, which provides information on economic, environmental and socio-demographic indicators. Gender-related findings include that women hold 28.7% of the seats in national parliaments.

The paper "Measuring SDG progress in Asia and the Pacific: Is there enough data?" reviews the availability of data on all proposed global SDG indicators for Asia-Pacific countries and is prepared based on data from the SDG indicators Global Database.

Wind energy continues to grow globally, with wind the most competitively priced technology in many if not most markets. According to the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), the inevitable transition to renewable energy continues to gather momentum with the total global wind energy installation now at almost 540 gigawatts. The report published by the Global Wind Energy Council ays that Europe, India and the offshore sector have had record years. Chinese installations were down slightly to 19.5 Gigawatts (GW), but the rest of the world made up for most of that.

Between 2003 and 2016, the forest fires have jumped by almost 38% from 24,450 to 33,664 shows the State of Forests report 2017 released by the environment ministry.

Urban public space is extraordinarily adaptable under a pattern of relatively stable changes. However, when facing unprecedented and potentially extreme climatic changes, public spaces may not have the same adaptation capacity. In this context, planned adaptation gains strength against “business as usual”. While public spaces are among the most vulnerable areas to climatic hazards, they entail relevant characteristics for adaptation efforts. As such, public space design can lead to effective adaptation undertakings, explicitly influencing urban design practices as we know them.