Brought together by one of Time Magazine’s “World’s Most Influential People”, and President of the Copenhagen Consensus Bjorn Lomborg, the Andhra Pradesh Priorities Eminent Panel met with the Chief Secretary Anil Chandra Punetha at the Secretariat in Amaravati yesterday. The discussion focused on how this think tank could work with the different departments of the Andhra Pradesh government to help the state become a leader among Indian states in social development and economic growth. Said that he was buoyed by the positive response that this organization had received from Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu as well, and wishing to carry forward down this path to help “translate this research into action”, Lomborg maintained a most positive outlook on the entire effort.
In collaboration with Tata Trusts, the panel is made up of Nobel prize-winning economist Professor Finn Kydland, former CEO of Oxfam India Nisha Agrawal, and Vice-Chancellor of Indira Gandhi Institute for Development Research and president of the Indian Economic Association Professor S Mahendra Dev. With such eminent members on board, and with the backing that this panel and its efforts have been receiving, the Chief Secretary said that he hoped the research and planning would result in “concrete policy actions” that would be the true test of the overall success of such an endeavour. The findings of the panel have resulted in 77 prioritised policies and interventions throughout the state, focusing on aspects of life that include health, agriculture, nutrition, and sanitation, to name a few of these. “We will come up with a concrete action plan in the next two months,” Lomborg said, in response.