Marginalization, Poverty and Decentralization
(November 19-22, 2016)

Call for Papers

The Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), Kerala; the Research Committee 10 on “Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self-Management” and Working Group 05 on “Famine and Society”, of the International Sociological Association (ISA), are pleased to announce that the International Conference on Marginalization, Poverty and Decentralization (ICMPD 2016) will take place at The Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), Kerala, India November 19-22, 2016 and that the Call for Papers is now open!

ICMPD 2016 aims to deliberate on issues of marginalization, poverty and decentralization across the world and what lessons local self government institutions, states and countries learn from Kerala’s experience in democratic decentralization and poverty alleviation in addressing concerns of marginalization, poverty, social and political exclusion etc. The best practices from other countries will also be discussed.

Since decentralization is considered an important prerequisite for addressing many social, economic and political concerns at local level, efforts will be made to discuss the issues, alternatives, innovations and modalities for promoting the same in different contexts. Collective action and social movements in this regard will also be discussed. Poverty is a multi dimensional problem and it is closely linked with marginalization. The issues emerging in poverty alleviation require extensive discussion and dissemination of good practices for replication. Participation is another important aspect of decentralization and therefore papers are welcome to discuss emerging patterns of participation in various social, political and economic contexts. The papers on various aspects of marginalization, poverty and decentralization in local as well as global contexts are welcome. How decentralization, federalism, participation, organizational democracy and self management can help in resolving various types of conflicts in the developing societies need to be debated.
The ICMPD 2016 will also discuss the emerging issues and options capturing the full import of the acronymFAMINE (
Food insecurity as a consequence of severely diminished purchasing power of vulnerable groups in society, Alienation on account of discrimination based on Caste, Color or Creed; Marginalization on account of severely diminishing real incomes; Inequality based on dysfunctional social systems and travails of the workers in the Informal Sector, Negative impact on vulnerable groups of natural calamities & man-made disasters such as civil wars and economic shocks caused by market volatility; & Exclusion from mainstream society based on social and economic ostracization resulting in social conflict, unrest and violence).
There is a plan to bring out a publication after the conference. Selected paper givers will be requested to contribute their final paper for the book.

The keynote speakers of the conference are likely to be highly recognized academics, experts and policy makers Dr. T.M. Thomas Isaac, Eminent Economist and Finance Minister, Government of Kerala; Mr. S.M. Vijayanand, Chief Secretary, Government of Kerala; Dr. K.T. Jaleel, Minister for Local Self Government, Government of Kerala; Professor Isabel da COSTA, President, RC 10 (CNRS-IDHES; Ecole Normale Superieure de Cachan, France); Dr Harjit Singh Anand, President, WG 05 (Chairman, Glownet Knowledge Services); Dr. P. P. Balan, Board Member, WG05 and RC 10 (Kerala Institute of Local Administration, Thrissur, Kerala, India); Professor Fátima ASSUNÇÃO, Vice-President APSIOT and Secretary RC10 (CIEG-ISCSP, University of Lisboa, Portugal); Professor Eleni-Nina Pazarzi, Vice-President European Sociological Association and Treasurer RC10 (University of Piraeus, Greece); Professor Staffan LINDBERG, Board Member, WG 05 (Lund University, Sweden, tbc); Professor Surinder JODHKA (Centre for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India, tbc); Professor Laura STARK (University of Jyväskylä, Finland, tbc); Professor Vera Vratusa (Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, Serbia tbc); Dr Debal K SinghaRoy (Professor of Sociology, School of Social Sciences, IGNOU, New Delhi, India); Professor D R Sahu, University of Lucknow, India and Secretary RC48; Dr Amrit Srinivasan, Former Professor and Head, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), New Delhi; Dr. Gopakumar K. Thampi, Director, Economic Governance, Asia Foundation, Sri Lanka; Mr. Janaka Hemathilaka, Practical Action, Sri Lanka; and Dr. John Kattakkayam, Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology, University of Kerala.
Papers are invited in a wide range of areas, including the following:-

#Decentralization and Local Governance
# Marginalization & Deprivation
# Poverty, Inequality & Exclusion
#Community Governance
#Women Empowerment
#Climate Change, Natural Disasters and Food Insecurity
#Social Accountability
#Collective Action and Social Movements
#Participatory Planning
#Rights Based Development
#Waste Management
#Natural Resource Management & Organic Farming
#Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self Management
The final date for submitting abstracts (500 words in MS Word format) is 30th August 2016. The abstract will be reviewed by an academic committee and final paper needs to be submitted on acceptance of abstract. The final date of submission of full paper (5000 words) in MS Word format is Thursday 20th October 2016. The papers may be submitted to Prof. P.P. Balan, Director, KILA or Sunny George, Professor, at the email address: For details please visit the conference website: The acceptance of abstract will be considered as registration for participants in the Conference. The selected papers will be published in book form with ISBN number. There is no registration fee and the organizers will take care of food, accommodation and local travel. For those (Indians only) who are contributing full paper, 2nd AC Train Fare will be reimbursed.

The official language of the conference is English.
Conference Organizing Committees:

Dr. K.T. Jaleel
Minister for Local Self Government
Government of Kerala

Dr. P. P. Balan, Director, KILA
Board Member, ISA RC 10 and WG05
Conference Director
Mobile: + 91-9446521312
Office: +91 487 2201312


Dr. Sunny George, Professor, KILA
Conference Coordinator
Mobile: +91 9446606973

Mr. Manoj Kumar Teotia
Secretary, WG05 on Famine and Society, ISA
Conference Joint Coordinator
Mobile: +91-8283825534

Mr. Saji P. Jacob
Department of Sociology
Loyola College, Thiruvananthapuram
Member, Organising Committee

Please visit further details.

...if you are considering participating in the international conference on “Marginalization, Poverty and Decentralization” (19-22 November 2016) that is being organized by our colleagues P.P. Balan and Manoj Teotia,
please see below the invitation that Manoj has kindly sent to RC10 members:
“Greetings from Chandigarh, India. I am sure my email finds you happy and healthy and you may preparing for the Kerala conference also. I wish to take the benefit of this opportunity and I extend my invitation to you and any other RC 10 delegate who wish to visit North-western part of India and particularly my city (Chandigarh). We will be happy to host any of you and arrange your interaction with the faculty, researchers and students. We can also explore some collaborative opportunities to work together. My institute is a premier research institute under Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) and Dr Balan also worked here for about 4 years. Chandigarh is conveniently accessible from Delhi by air, road, and rail.”

Thinkers Workshop at KILA, Kerala, India

Dear Ms. Isabel da Costa,

Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA) is organising a Thinkers Workshop on Decentralisation and Development, during 20-21 January 2016 at KILA, Kerala, India.

We would like to invite you and all the members of the RC10 for this programme. KILA will be able to make arrangements for the local travel, food and accommodation.

The details of the programme are attached to this mail.

Kindly share this information among all the members.

With warm regards.

P.P. Balan


Dr. P P Balan


Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA)

Mulamkunnathukavu P.O


Tel: +91 487 2201312 (Off)

Fax: +91 487 2201062

Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA)
Kerala, 680 581, India

Second International Conference

Dates: 27-29 November 2014

Venue: Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), Thrissur, Kerala, India

South Asia School of Local Governance (SAS) of KILA in collaboration with International Sociological Association (RC 10) is organising an International Conference on ‘Gandhi, Gram Swaraj and Democratic Decentralisation’. The Conference is organised in the context of emerging importance of Gandhian thought and philosophy in democratic decentralisation and local governance. The conference is expected to open up opportunities for a dialogue for community participation in local governance and development from the point of view of Gandhian concept of Gram Swaraj. Apart from the paper presentations by scholars, there will be a special session for Gandhians. Papers are invited in a wide range of substantive areas, including the following:-

  • Suraj (Good Governance)
  • Service Delivery
  • Climate Change
  • Poverty Alleviation
  • Fiscal Decentralisation
  • Political Representation
  • Community Governance
  • Sanitation and Health
  • Waste Management
  • Local Economic Development
  • Jurisprudence
The final date for abstract of the paper is Monday 25th August 2014. The abstract (500 words) shall be in MS Word format. The abstract will be reviewed by an academic committee and final paper needs to be submitted on acceptance of abstract. The decision on abstract will be communicated before Friday 05th September 2014. The final date of submission of full paper (5000 words) in MS Word format is Saturday 25th October 2014. The papers may be submitted to Dr. P.P. Balan, Director, KILA or Dr. Sunny George, South Asia School, at the email address: For details please visit: The acceptance of final paper will be considered as registration for participants in the Conference. The organizers will take care of food, accommodation and local travel. For those who are contributing full paper, 2nd AC Train Fare will be reimbursed.


International conference Democratic decentralization and people's participation 20- 23 December 2012


you can download hear:;

organised by
Kerala Institute of Local Administration(KILA)
Kerala 680 581, India
20-23 December 2012

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in association with
RC10, International Sociological Association
"Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self-Management"
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(see the document)

International Conference

20-23 December 2012

Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA)
Thrissur, Kerala, India

Organised jointly by



RC10, International Sociological Association
"Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self-Management"

Organising Committee
P.P. Balan, Director, KILA <>
Isabel da Costa, Senior Researcher CNRS-IDHE, President ISA/RC10, France
Sunny George, KILA <>
Julia Rozanova, Yale University, USA and the University of British Columbia, Canada, ISA/RC10 Secretary

Dear friends,

We are happy to invite you the International Conference on ‘Democratic Decentralisation and People’s Participation’.


Democratic decentralisation and people’s participation is increasingly becoming a subject of discussion considering its importance in social development. Democracy will be more meaningful when it becomes closer to the people. Strengthening of local governments, by means of devolving functions, functionaries and finance is found to be one the effective ways of decentralisation. And such experiments are being made all over the world. The key to the success of decentralisation lies in the level of people’s participation. In turn, the effective participation of people depends on the capacity building for equipping people to participate in local level planning, monitoring and implementation. Models are being emerged based on learning-by-doing. Kerala, the southernmost state in India, has successfully experimented democratic decentralisation and people’s participation in local level planning.


The objective of the Conference is to share the experiences in democratic decentralisation and participatory planning so as to formulate a strategy for further strengthening of local governments.


The following are the following sessions for the conference.

  1. Local Governance
  2. Devolution of Functions and Finance to Local Governments
  3. Services of Local Governments
  4. Local Level Participatory Planning
  5. Local Economic Development
  6. Poverty Reduction
  7. Livelihood Management
  8. Natural Resource Management
  9. E-Governance
  10. Women and Child Development


There will be filed visits to local bodies and a boat cruise through the beautiful backwaters of Kerala.


  • M.K. Muneer, Minister for Local Self Governments, Government of Kerala
  • Isabel DA COSTA, CNRS-IDHE, Cachan, France
  • Francesco GARIBALDO, Sociological Association, Italy
  • Thomas Isaac, Member of Legislative Assembly and Former Minister for Finance, Government of Kerala
  • Litsa NICOLAOU-SMOKOVITI, University of Piraeus, Greece
  • Julia ROZANOVA, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • S.M. Vijayanand, Secretary, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India
  • Maria FREGIDOU-MALAMA, University of Gävle, Sweden
  • Eleni NINA-PAZARZI, University of Piraeus, Greece
  • James Varghese, Secretary, Ministry of Local Self Governments, Government of Kerala
  • Martine REVEL, Center National des Recherches Scientifiques, France
  • Michael Tharakan, Vice Chancellor, Kannur University and former Director, KILA
  • Vera VRATUSA, Belgrade University, Serbia
  • Janet MCINTYRE, Flinders University, Australia
  • Peelipose Thomas, former Member of Planning Board, Government of Kerala
  • Pawel STAROSTA, University of Lodz, Poland
  • Lauren LANGMAN, Loyola University, USA
  • C.P. John, Member, Planning Board, Government of Kerala
<span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 14.6667px;">·         </span><span style="font-family: 'Calibri','sans-serif'; font-size: 14.6667px;">Gyoergy Szell, Prof. em. Dr. School of Social Sciences, University of Osnabrueck,Germany</span>


Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA)
Thrissur, Kerala 680 581, India, Tel: +91 487 2201312,
The nearest International Airport is Kochi International Airport, Kerala. The nearest Railway Station is Thrissur.


The sessions will be in English. Papers. Deadlines for abstracts (in 500 in MS Word Format) is 15th November 2012, and for the full paper (in 5000 words in MS Word Format) is 30th November 2012.
The papers may be submitted to:
We will upload the abstract and full paper in the conference website and you can verify your status by visiting the conference website.
We are planning to publish the proceedings with an ISBN Number.


The Conference Website is


Register your name by visiting the Conference Website
Make registration by providing a separate username [new one for this purpose] and a password [new one for this purpose]. For subsequent visit, please remember your username and password.

There will be No Registration Fee. The organizers will be taking care of the local hospitality (up and down journey from the Airport/Railway Station, boarding and lodging).


The International Sociological Association (ISA) is a non-profit association for scientific purposes. Its function is to represent sociologists everywhere, regardless of their school of thought, scientific approaches or ideological opinion.
The goal of the Association is to advance sociological knowledge throughout the world. In its structure, the Association recognizes the aspirations of sociologists in all parts of the world and endeavours to support and strengthen the free development of sociology in cooperation with similar associations of social scientists.
To achieve these ends, the Association supports activities to:
  • secure and develop institutional and personal contacts between sociologists and other social scientists throughout the world;
  • encourage the international dissemination and exchange of information on developments in sociological knowledge;
  • facilitate and promote international research and training;
  • convene meetings and regularly scheduled world congresses; and
  • promote publications which support its other activities.
Objectives of Research Committee on Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self-Management (RC10)

To secure and develop personal and associational/professional contacts between scientists and to unite the professional qualities, social consciousness and experience of its members for work on problems of Participation and Self-Management throughout the world.

Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), an autonomous institution under the Ministry of Local Self- Government Department , Government of Kerala, is the nodal agency for Training, Research and Consultancy for Local Self-Government Institutions in Kerala. The Institute began its operation in 1990. Apart from training, consultancy and policy oriented research activities, KILA organizes seminars, workshops and discussions on various issues of local governance and development. The Government of Kerala have recognised it as a Centre of Excellence. The Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Government of Kerala have declared KILA as the SAARC Centre of Training in Decentralization and Local Governance. KILA has provided a lead role in the capacity building and training of democratic decentralization in Kerala and now it is engaged in institutionalizing the process of decentralization and to make the local government system sustainable.
KILA is a link between people and the Government and is also a think tank for policy formulations. The feedbacks that have been gathered from various training programmes together with the research support facilitate in the formulation of pragmatic policies for strengthening decentralization. Indeed, in implementing these policies, KILA plays a major role by means of wider dissemination of information through training, publications, seminars, workshops and discussions.
Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA) has been engaged in the capacity building activities for local governments in Kerala since its establishment in 1990. The Institute is supported by the Government of Kerala, as its nodal institution for training, research and consultancy for the Local Self-Government Institutions. The Institute engages in different capacity building activities of the local governments, both rural and urban.
The Institute disseminates the insights of research and recommendations of its various training programmes and workshops through a number of publications. In order to meet the training needs of the participants from other Indian states and neighbouring countries KILA has translated several documents in English and other Indian languages like Hindi, Tamil, Bengali and Kannada.
KILA actively collaborates with many national and international agencies like Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation (SDC), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), UN-HABITAT, and Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) with a motive of deepening local governance. KILA collaborates with the Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance and All India Institute of Local Self Governments, Mumbai to conduct international course in decentralised governance and poverty alleviation. KILA has been recoginised as one the Regional Resource Centres of the Government of India for the capacity building of urban local bodies.

Kerala, ‘the God’s Own Country’, one of the 50 “must see” destinations identified by the National Geographic Traveler, is the southernmost state in India. Endowed with unique geographical features having an equable climate, temperature varying between 170C to 340C round the year, serene beaches, tranquil stretches of emerald backwaters, lush hill stations and exotic wildlife, waterfalls, sprawling plantations and paddy fields, it has enchanting art forms and historic and cultural monuments, and festivals.
Referred as the “Spice Garden of India”, Kerala is one of the cleanest and the most peaceful parts of India, with the state remaining a major source of India's pepper, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, clove, star alise, and cinnamon. The State is also has cultivation of cashew bananas, rubber, cardamoms, coconuts, cashews, and ginger.
It is in fact in Kerala that the first seafarers set foot on Indian soil. Legend has it that long before Vasco Da Gama discovered India, when he landed on the coast of Kerala, King Solomon's ships traded off the Malabar coast between 972 and 932 B.C., followed by the Phoenicians, Romans, Christians, Arabs, and Chinese. They all came to stock up on monkeys, tigers, parrots, timber, sandalwood, and ivory along with the abundance of spices.
Kochi, the commercial capital of Kerala, is a port city with one of the most beautiful natural harbours, has seen a colourful procession of cultures stroll across its streets down the ages. The Arabs, the Chinese, the Jews, the Dutch, the Portuguese and the British have all done their bit to make it the exotic cultural melting pot that is today. Besides architectural delights like the Jewish Synagogue, Dutch Cemetery and the Portuguese Churches, Koch is a veritable treasure house of enchanting experiences. The centre of trade and commerce in Kerala, it is also a favourite shopping destination of bargain-seeding travelers.
In the landscape of human development, Kerala is forging ahead with the ‘Kerala Model of Development’, characterized by achieving relatively high level of human development with very low level of per capita income within a short period of time. It is well known for its achievements in total literacy, low infant mortality rate and high life expectancy.
It is interesting to note that ‘The God of Small Things’ by Arundhati Roy’s Booker Prize winning book is written in the background of her childhood experience of beautiful Kerala.


Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA) is near the Cochin International Airport which is having connectivity to the major international airports. The nearest railway station is Thrissur. The organisers will make arrangements for the travel from the airport and the railway station to the conference venue. There will be a help desk at the airport and the railway station for receiving the participants.

|| Dr.P.P. Balan

Kerala Institute of Local Administration(KILA)

Mulamkunnathukavu P.O., Thrissur

Kerala – 680 581

Tel: +91-487-2201312

Fax: +91-487-2201062

Mob: 09446521312

Dr. Sunny George
Associate Professor
Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA)
Mulamkunnathukavu P.O., Thrissur
Kerala – 680 581
Tel: 0487-2201402
Fax: +91-487-2201062
Mob: 09446606973