List of On-going & Future Research Projects
An In-Depth Analysis Of Rising Household Indebtedness In Mauritius
How bad is Alcohol Abuse in Rodrigues
Evaluating the Social Insurance and Protection of Women Entrepreneurs Operating in the Informal Sector in Mauritius (Mauritius Research
Empowerment of Women
Translation of Abhimanyu Unnuth Novels from Hindi to English
Anthology of Travel Writing to Mauritius
Anthology of Literature of the Indian Ocean
Inclusive Identity in Multicultural Society
Multiculturalism is the existence of plural cultures in a single society, and the psychological support for this heterogeneity. The objective is to investigate identity aspects related to inclusive identity, to understand how harmonious intergroup relations may be fostered in plural societies, like Mauritius, but also countries around the world that may be experiencing an influx of immigrants, as well as mono-cultural societies with very little diversity. Inclusive identity is where ego boundaries between the self and others are not clearly demarcated and are permeable. Here individuals feel belongingness not just to their ethnic group, but also to larger entities such as the Rainbow Nation Identity in Mauritius or the Cosmopolitan European Identity in the European Union (EU).
The main aim is to sample adolescents and young adults in plural contexts as they are at critical stages in developing their identities. This project comprises two studies applicable for high schools; and one study applicable to universities.
In Study 1, we will investigate:
- The meaning of inclusive identity across groups and countries and its association with national integration policies
- How national ideology, multicultural attitudes and acculturation orientations are associated with inclusive identity
- The affective, behavioral and cognitive outcomes associated with an inclusive identity.
In Study 2, we will investigate:
- The association between identity, psychosocial functioning (psychological well-being and social adjustment) and high school student performance
- which identity aspects are most important in predicting performance under which conditions.
10. Archaeological and Family Research at Le Morne
This project is a continuation of an existing project on the World Heritage Site and consists of archaeological and family history research in South West Black River to better understand the intra-district migration, social and economic mobility and demographic history of the ex-slave population.
11. Slave Trade and Indentured Immigration Research & Database
The project will use UoM History students working on a part-time basis to conduct research and input information in a database. They will gain valuable transferable skills and advanced computer training
12. Digital History Database & Website
The UoM has accumulated a large number of documents in both oral, material and written form. It hopes to create a digital history library to be made available to all staff and students. As no one in the History Department possesses the technical skills of inventorying, locating appropriate equipment etc, it is proposed to seek a consultancy on this as well as for developing guidelines for access oral data. Students will gain training in transferable skills as well as acquire valuable research experience.
13. Archaeological Research Moulin à Poudre
The Moulin a Poudre will be the site to be explored in 2016. It was considered the unique site as it represents the remains of an 18th century industrial site. It was a gunpowder manufacturing plant, employing nearly 900 slaves, mainly of Indian origin. The composition of this slave population makes this site unique.
14. Research for Museum Exhibit
This forms part of one of the recommendations of the Truth and Justice Commission. Given the University’s expertise in the subject, a pool of researchers will work on the research and conceptualization of museum exhibits. Students undertaking the Heritage and Museum studies module will gain valuable training in various aspects of Museum display and management. We will identify missing areas requiring further research and locate data, and artifacts objects found all over the island. One visit to Mozambique is envisaged for data collection, the one country as yet not yet fully researched in Mauritius.
15. Analysing Chronic and Transient Poverty: Evidence for Mauritius
Though we may argue that poverty affects few households in Mauritius compared to other African economies, it is however important to note that those affected remains in poverty for a remarkable portion of their lifetime. It is vital to capture the dynamics of poverty by differentiating between a poverty level where there is a high-risk of becoming poor combined with a relatively high chance of leaving poverty, or if the poverty level instead is due to a low risk of becoming poor combined with a low chance of leaving poverty. In the former case poverty is a relatively brief and temporary condition, while it is more persistent and chronic in the latter case. Gaining insights about the flows into and out of poverty is essential from a policy perspective; the effectiveness of different poverty reduction measures depends crucially on the nature of poverty. If poverty is more temporary, programs that aim at stabilization of short term income fluctuations are appropriate. If poverty is more persistent, there seems to be a stronger need for measures improving the long-term labour market outcomes or for social assistance.
16. Aid for Trade and Development: An African Perspective
Aid for Trade is a holistic framework which encourages policymakers to use trade as a lever for economic growth and poverty alleviation. Aid for Trade supports poor and vulnerable countries in developing the basic economic infrastructure and tools they need to harness trade as an engine of economic growth and development. It encourages developing countries to write trade objectives into their development plans – and donors to respond by making resources available to meet the needs which are expressed. This is particularly critical for Least-Developed Countries (LDCs) whose trade remains highly focused on a narrow range of products. This research is aimed at considering the approach of Africa to aid for trade and ways in which the region can best capitalise on developments in the WTO and other multilateral forums.
17. What does the informal sector mean for growth and job creation in Mauritius?
The informal economy comprises half to three-quarters of all non-agricultural employment in developing countries. Although it is hard to generalize concerning the quality of informal employment, it most often means poor employment conditions and is associated with increasing poverty. Some of the characteristic features of informal employment are lack of protection in the event of non-payment of wages, compulsory overtime or extra shifts, lay-offs without notice or compensation, unsafe working conditions and the absence of social benefits such as pensions, sick pay and health insurance. Women and other vulnerable groups of workers who are excluded from other opportunities have little choice but to take informal low-quality jobs. The research will address the need for workers and economic units in the informal economy, with emphasis on an integrated approach from a decent work perspective.
18. Greening of Small and Medium Enterprises: The Case of Selected Small Island Developing States in the Indian Ocean
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are highly vulnerable to different forms of shocks – economic, ecological, environmental, social and political. Such vulnerability is explained by the fact that SIDS have failed to develop enough resilience against these shocks for various reasons. This research proposes to study the potential mechanism that can be placed to build up resilience at least to ensure a sustainable growth path along the line of consolidating economic resilience in the near future. Smallness, fragility of ecosystem, limited natural capital, lack of technological knowhow hold aback the potential for economic success and convergence with the high-income economies. However, economic success stories do exist in the case of SIDS becoming Upper Middle Income economies across a short time span, for example, Mauritius and the Maldives. The example of the Comoros is that of a group of islands, which is still struggling to cross over to attain middle income. To ensure further economic progress and to try and get over the middle-income threshold, Mauritius, which is now aiming at becoming a high-income economy by 2020, has to overcome quite a few challenges. These have to do with the environmental stress that it is currently going essentially with respect to its natural capital. To name a few, adaptation to and mitigation of extreme weather events (part of the climate change process), water resources management, waste management, achieving energy efficiency, promoting agricultural productivity, overcoming food shortages and ensuring food security, sustainability of the tourism industry and overcoming trade challenges in a globalized economy. These challenges are not only common to the case of Mauritius, but they are relevant for all the small island states which are generally poor in managing well their environmental sector and are efficient in natural resource management and planning.
19. Gender, Value Chain and Sustainable Development.
Value chains have become a key concept in international discussions on development, in particular in relation to the effects of globalization on employment and poverty reduction in the South. Together with the increased attention to private sector development, the concept features prominently in the follow up to the recommendations of the Africa. At the same time, gender equality and women’s empowerment also feature high on the development policy agenda. Ensuring that gender issues are taken into consideration in value chain-related interventions is vital for facilitating the development of inclusive value chains that benefit both women and men.
20. International Migration and Development for Africa
It is estimated that some 180 million people, or three per cent of the world’s population, are living in countries other than countries of birth. Such movement of people across international borders has enormous economic, social and cultural implications for both origin and destination countries. Yet, until recently, the impact of migration on sending and receiving countries was highly under-researched, mainly due to scarcity of data and political sensitivities. The research aims to expand knowledge on the effects of migration on source and destination countries and identify the migration policies, regulations and institutional reforms that will lead to superior development outcomes.
21. Rethinking Bank Regulations
Which regulatory policies and supervisory practices make banks more effective in channeling society's savings to the most deserving borrowers? While the International Financial Institutions have stressed the importance of effective regulatory and supervisory institutions for the stability and efficiency of banking systems around the world, until recently no cross-country evidence was available on the relative benefits of different institutional and organizational structures of bank regulation and supervision.
In 1999, the first comprehensive cross-country survey was compiled on how banks are regulated and supervised, including requirements and regulatory powers regarding entry, ownership, capital, activities, auditing, organization, liquidity, provisioning, accounting, disclosure and bank exit. Cross-country research using these data have shown the importance of supervisory policies to foster market discipline and have shed doubts on policies that simply strengthen supervisors' ability to intervene in banks' day-to-day business.
22. Developing a Measure of Hybrid Identity
Research in social and personality psychology has focused and investigated on the ways in which individuals manage, make sense of and identify to the multiple social categories to which they are ascribed or choose to belong. The two main identities that have been researched because of their relevance to contemporary diverse societies are ethnic and national identities. How do people come to negotiate the two identities, do they view them as oppositional, separate or rather as interdependent and positively associated.
The on-going research on hybrid identities in collaboration with Prof Colleen Ward and Agnes Szasbo from the University of Wellington, New Zealand aims to assess the construct of hybrid identity from a cross-cultural perspective.
A first wave of data has already been collected in Mauritius and New Zealand and the psychometric properties of the scale are promising. In the second wave of studies we intend to employ semi-experimental designs and further survey questionnaires and focus group.