King Center on Global Development
Aruna Ranganathan was formerly an associate professor of organizational behavior at Stanford University. She spent her childhood in the Middle East, India and Singapore before graduating with honors from University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business with a BCom in organizational behavior and human resources. She also received an MS in international and comparative labor from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations and an MS/Phd in management from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.
King Center Supported Research
2018 - 2019 Academic Year | Junior Faculty Research Grant
Consumer Tastes, Market Intermediaries and the Livelihoods of Artisans in India
The developing world is well-known for producing unique handicraft products that have experienced a resurgence in demand among consumers globally. Despite this growing trend, millions of artisans who make these products still live in poverty. This project examines the role that intermediaries play in shutting out artisanal producers from this burgeoning market while simultaneously expanding demand for their products. Building on preliminary evidence from interviews conducted in Channapatna, India, this research aims to establish the causal effect of exposure to market intermediaries on consumers’ changing preferences through field experiments. The outcomes of this study offer an understanding of artisans’ weak economic position despite increased marketing for artisanal products.