IIDS has been recognised as a Centre with 'Potential of Excellence' by Research Councils, UK


Upcoming Events

Policy Engagement with Parliamentarians: A Round-Table Discussion
11 February 2014, Constitution Club of India, New Delhi 


The Indian Institute of Dalit Studies (IIDS) is a non-governmental, non-profit institution. It was set up in 2003, by academicians and civil society activists to understand the problems of marginalisedgroups, identify the causes of their marginalisation and suggest policies for their empowerment. Since its inception, the Institute has carried out extensive research on the development concerns of the marginalised groups of the Indian society. For its contribution, the Institute has been recognised as a 'Centre for Excellence' by the Economic and Social Research Council, United Kingdom; and 'The Emerging Centre for Social Science Research' by the South Asia Research Hub, Department for International Development (DFID) for the Institute's academic and policy research in the social sciences in the country. The Institute has also been recognised as a policy research institute among fifty institutes selected by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada.Read more...


To help develop ‘Socially Inclusive Character in the Society, Economy, Politics, Governance and Development.
  • To undertake research on the problem of marginalised groups, namely Dalits, tribals, religious minorities, women from excluded groups, denotified tribes, physically challenged and similar groups in economic, social and political spheres.
  • To undertake research on the nature and forms of discrimination and social exclusion faced by marginalised groups namely Dalits, tribals, religious minorities, women from excluded groups, denotified tribes, the physically challenged and similar groups.
  • To  undertake research to develop an understanding of the consequences of social exclusion and discrimination on economic growth and poverty, education, health, political participation and on the well-being of the marginalised social groups.
  • To undertake research on policies to overcome discrimination, particularly 'exclusion and discrimination-induced deprivation' and its consequences.
  • To provide knowledge support to policy-making bodies to develop inclusive policies.
  • To provide knowledge support to international development and funding agencies to enable them to shape their approach and funding policies towards problems of excluded groups.
  • To provide knowledge-support to civil society organisations at the grassroot, state and national levels.
  • To enhance the capacity of research institutions/centres, as well as individual researchers in institutes and universities, by developing materials on methodology and concepts of measurement.
  • To act as a resource centre for students and to extend knowledge through setting up of branches.
Programmes and Projects Highlights
 Dalit Women in Indian Politics- Making Impact through Parliament, IDRC
This proposal builds on the previous IDRC supported research support project on Dalit women rights and citizenship in India. The research project focuses on political participation and representation of Dalit women in India by understanding the level of participation, representation, and role in national government including cabinet, parliament and ministries. While looking into the journey of Dalit women in politics, it also deals with issues of participation of Dalit women activists. The study suggests measures for effective participation of Dalit women in politics.
 Dalit Women Rights and Citizenship
The overall objective of the project was to undertake studies with a purpose to get an insight into the problem (marginalisation) of Dalit women, strengthen Dalit women’s agency and institution building, and influence pro-active policy, strategies and legislations for enhancing Dalit women’s rights and entitlements. Read more...

Status of Persons with Disabilities in India: Comparison across Social Groups
The study looked at Dalits and disability in India and explored indepth consequences of inter-relation between the two. It drew corollary between the two concepts-hysically challenged and caste-based disadvantage, discrimination, and deprivation of opportunities in different spheres of day to day life. Read more...

Dalit Development Report
The main purpose of the report is to present the status of socially marginalised groups of SCs and STs with respect to disparities in attainment of their human development, since the deprivation of these groups is closely linked to processes of caste and ethnicity-based exclusion and discrimination. The report discusses the concept of social exclusion in general, Read more...

Policy Brief
Addressing the Unequal Burden of Malnutrition
By Sukhadeo Thorat and Nidhi Sadana Sabharwal
The poor are not uniformly disadvantaged. For most health indicators, the status of 'excluded groups' such as the Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Castes (ST) and Muslims is significantly worse than that of other castes and religious group. Read More.....


An opportunity for change? Gender analysis of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act

By Rebecca Holmes, Nidhi Sadana and Saswatee Rath
The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) guarantees 100 days minimum wage employment to rural  households in India. Enacted in 2005, MGNREGA is a flagship programme now reaching over 50 million households  Read More...........

Recent Publications

Dalit Art and Visual Imagery
Edited by
Gary Michael Tartakov
  Oxford, New Delhi, 2012

Blocked by Caste: Economic Discrimination and Social Exclusion in Modern India
Edited by
S. K.Thorat and Katherine S. Newman
  Oxford, New Delhi, 2010

Dalits in India: Search for a Common Destiny
S. K. Thorat
  Sage, New Delhi, 2009

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Indian Institute of Dalit Studies, D-II/1, Road No-4, Andrews Ganj, New Delhi-110049 Phone No- 011-26252082 Designed and Maintained at IIDS