Characterizing the Skills Space in the Urban Informal Sector

10:00 am–5:00 pm
UChicago Center in Delhi


This workshop was based on a pilot study to understand and characterize the skills and opportunities space with a two two-fold objective -- first to apply a bottom-up crowdsourcing approach to mapping the space of skills, qualities and personality traits among urban informal workers; second to assess the applicability of machine learning tools like recommendation systems and adaptive surveys to a public policy context in India. Fieldwork for the project was carried out in Bangalore, including representative sampling in slums to study the labour supply side and purposive sampling of skills training centers to study the labour demand side.

UChicago Faculty member James Evans, Professor of Sociology is the Principal Investigator on the project. He is also founding Director of the University’s Computational Social Science program and Director of Knowledge Lab,  a center that uses big data, machine learning and intelligent crowdsourcing to understand the nature of innovation and knowledge. Nandana Sengupta, Assistant Professor (Economics) at Azim Premji University, School of Policy and Governance in Bangalore and Sarthak Gaurav, Assistant Professor (Economics) at Indian Institute of Technology Bombay,  are Co-Investigators.