Institute for Social and Economic Change

Established in 1972 by Professor V K R V Rao, ISEC is an All-India Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Training in the Social Sciences

Sobin George – isec

Sobin George


Sobin George

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Assistant Professor, Centre for Study of Social Change and Development (CSSCD)

Sobin George holds a PhD from Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. His areas of research and writings cover Marginalities, Social Gradients of Health, Medical Industry and Labuor Rights 


  1. George, Sobin 2021. Medical Innovation and Disease Burden: Conflicting Interests and the Social Divide in India, Cambridge University Press, London
  2. George, Sobin, Yadav, Manohar and Inbanathan, Anand (Edited). 2019. Change and Mobility in Contemporary Indian Society: Thinking M. N. Srinivas Today, Routledge, London and New York
  3. George, Sobin, 2018. The Caste Embededdness of Rural Public Health Services: A Study of Karnataka, ISEC Monograph, Bengaluru
  4. George, Sobin and Shalini Sinha 2017. (Edited). Redefined Labour Spaces: Organising Workers in Post Liberalised India, Routledge, London and New York. {Reviewed in Labor: Studies in Working-Class History of the Americas, 2019. 16(1), 178-180 by Arnab Dey}
  5. George, Sobin 2016. Work and Health in Informal Economy: Linkages from Export Oriented Garment Sector in Delhi, Daanish Books, New Delhi
  6. R K Mishra, K. N. Jehangir, P. Geeta, Sobin George. 2016. (Edited.), Health System Strengthening: Experiences of Developing Countries, Academic Foundation, New Delhi

Articles in Journals and Edited Books

  1. George S, Syamala TS, Paranjpe A, Saalim M (2023). “Intersections of informal work status, gender and tuberculosis diagnosis: Insights from a qualitative study from an Indian setting”. PLOS ONE 18(7): e0289137.
  2. Nagesh P, Bailey A, George Sobin, Subaiya L. (2023). “Shrinking labour geographies: Transport access for paid work in later ages”, Geoforum, 146, 103878,
  3. Patil, D.S., Bailey, A., George, S. (2023). “Mental Well-Being of Older Adults and Access to Healthcare During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Karnataka, India”. In: Shankardass, M.K. (eds) Handbook on COVID-19 Pandemic and Older Persons. Springer, Singapore, pp 587–605
  4. George, Sobin & Rao, Mohan (2023). “Barriers to Establishing a Dedicated Public Health Cadre: Reflections from the South Indian States”, Economic and Political Weekly, 58(4), 55-60.
  5. Nagesh, P., Bailey, A., George, S., Hyde, M., & Subaiya, L. (2023). “(Im)mobile ageing: Risks of exclusion in later life in liminal urban peripheries”. Ageing and Society, 1-24. doi:10.1017/S0144686X22001398 (Cambridge University Press).
  6. George, Sobin (2022). “Being Sick to a Cancer Patient: Pathways of delay in help seeking and Diagnosis of Cancer in India”, Journal of Social and Economic Development, (Springer) .
  7. Patil, D.S., Bailey, A., Yadav, U.N. George, S., Helbich, M., Ettema, D. Ashok, L (2022). Contextual factors influencing the urban mobility infrastructure interventions and policies for older adults in low- and middle-income countries: a realist review. BMC Public Health, 22, 1489. (Springer Nature).
  8. George S, Paranjpe A, Nagesh P, Saalim M. Barriers to treatment adherence for female Tuberculosis (TB) patients during the COVID-19 pandemic: Qualitative evidence from front-line TB interventions in Bengaluru City, India (2022). Indian J Public Health;66 (1):38-44. DOI 10.4103/ijph.ijph_1146_21.
  9. Bhat, D.L., Nayar, K.R., George, Sobin., Rao, A.P… . Nagesh, P. (2022). Livelihood, Employment and Health in the Context of COVID 19 Pandemic. In Rajan, I (ed.). India Migration Report 2021: Migrant’s Health, London: Routledge. ISBN : 9781003287667.
  10. George S., Paranjpe A., Nagesh P. (2022) How Do Pandemics Affect Frontline Health Interventions? Insights from the National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme in Bengaluru, India. In: Acharya S.S., Christopher S. (eds) Caste, COVID-19, and Inequalities of Care. People, Cultures and Societies: Exploring and Documenting Diversities. Springer, Singapore, pp. 215-232.
  11. Saalim, M., George, Sobin. (2021) Determinants of Wage Differentials Among In-Migrant Workers: Insights from a Primary Study Conducted in Kozhikode District, Kerala, India. Indian Journal of Labour Economics,
  12. Nagesh, P., Bailey, A., George, Sobin., and Subaiya, L. 2021. Ageist Transport Infrastructures: Rethinking Public Transport Amidst COVID-19 Lockdowns in India in Doucet et al, Global Reflections of COVID-19 and Urban Inequalities. Volume 1 Community and Society, Bristol University Press.
  13. Patil, D.S., Yadav, U.N., George, Sobin, Helbich, M., Ettema, D. & Bailey, A. 2020. Developing an evidence-informed framework for safe and accessible urban mobility infrastructures for older adults in low- and middle-income countries: a protocol for realist synthesis, Systematic Review 9, 196.
  14. Hyde M., George Sobin., Kumar V. 2020. Trends in Work and Employment in Rapidly Developing Countries. In: Bültmann U., Siegrist J. (eds) Handbook of Disability, Work and Health. Handbook Series in Occupational Health Sciences, vol 1. Springer, Cham
  15. George, Sobin 2019. Reconciliations of Caste and Medical Power in Rural Public Health Service, Economic and Political Weekly, 54(40), 43-50
    {Also podcasted by EPW in May 2020:}.
  16. George, Sobin, Yadav, M. and Inbanathan, A. 2019. M. N. Srinivas and the Kaleidoscope of Social Change in Modern India: A Critical Introduction, in, Change and Mobility in Contemporary Indian Society: Thinking M. N. Srinivas Today, Routledge, London and New York.
  17. George, Sobin. 2019. One village and many narratives of change: caste in multiple situations and spaces, in, Change and Mobility in Contemporary Indian Society: Thinking M. N. Srinivas Today, Routledge, London and New York .
  18. George, Sobin, Chandran, A. B, Nadh, O. P. and Apurva, K. H. 2018. Is drug development in India responsive to the disease burden? A public health appraisal, Economic and Political Weekly, 53(30), pp. 50-57
  19. George, Sobin 2017. Mistaken Identities in Information Technology Sector in India: Implications for Unionisation, in Redefined Labour Spaces: Organising Workers in Post Liberalized India, Routledge, London and New York, pp. 275-295.
  20. George, Sobin and Sinha, S. 2017. Labourcape and Labour Space in India: Critical Reflections, in Redefined Labour Spaces: Organising Workers in Post Liberalized India, Routledge, London and New York, pp. 17-43.
  21. George, Sobin 2016. Health for not All: Mapping the discriminated and detached terrains of health services in rural India, Journal of health system, 1(2): 20-27
  22. George, Sobin 2016. Does social profile of healthcare providers matter? Continuing challenges of inclusion in healthcare delivery system in India, in R. K. Mishra, P. Geeta, K. N. Jehangir, Sobin George, Pranav Garimella (eds.), Health System Strengthening: Experiences of Some Countries, Academic Foundation, New Delhi.
  23. George, Sobin 2015. New Forms of Retail Trade and the Weak among Vulnerable in India (in Chinese), in Sino-Indian Forum: Opening-Up, Cooperation and Economic Growth, Guo Xiaoming (Ed.), Sichuan People’s Publishing Ltd., Chengdu (PR China), pp.206-236.
  24. George, Sobin 2014. India’s Retail Trade Revolution: Socio Religious Dimensions of Employment Loss and New Forms of Urban Exclusion, Journal of Exclusion Studies, 4(2): 191-203
  25. George, Sobin 2014. Deregulation and the Fading Labour Agenda: Evidence from Transnational Automobile Companies in India, Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. XLIX, No.46
  26. George, Sobin 2014. Lockout at Toyota Kirloskar: The Future Space of Labour, Economic and Political Weekly, Vol XLIX, No 18
  27. George, Sobin 2010. Hostel Schemes for Dalit Students: Continuing Exclusion, Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. XLV, No 25
  28. George, Sobin 2007. Unionisation and Collective Bargaining in India: Contextualising Disciplining of Labour Space in the Flexibility Regime, Labour File, Vol.5, No. 1 & 2
  29. George, Sobin 2006. Ascribed Health Risks of Workers under Labour Market Flexibilisation: What New the Special Economic Zone Act has to offer?, Journal of Health and Development, Vol.3, No 3&4
  30. George, Sobin 2006. Workers’ Struggle in Toyota Kirloskar Motors, India: Changing Capital Labour Relations in Trans National Corporations, Labour File, Vol. 4, No.1
  31. George, Sobin 2006. Labour Practices and Working Conditions in TNCs: The Case of Samsung India, in Chang (ed.), Labour in Globalising Asian Corporations: A Portrait of Struggle, AMRC, Hong Kong, pp.107-129
  32. Das, K.L. and George, Sobin 2006. Labour Practices and Working Conditions in TNCs: The Case of Toyota Kirloskar in India, in Chang (ed.), Labour in Globalising Asian Corporations: A Portrait of Struggle, AMRC, Hong Kong, pp. 273-302
  1. George, Sobin, Saalim, M, Nadh, O. P and Divyashree H V (2023). How are Cancer Treatment Decisions Made? Insights from a Qualitative Study Conducted Among Selected Cancer Patients in Bengaluru City (India), ISEC Working Paper 558, ISBN 978-93-93879-27-1.
  2. George, Sobin, Balachandran, Arun and Anushree K (2021). The abysmal state of drug cost containment measures in India: Evidences from expenditure on cancer medicine, ISEC Working Paper 510
  3. George, Sobin and Shrinidhi Adiga (2017), ‘Caste’ among Muslims: Ethnographic Account from a Karnataka Village, ISEC Working Paper 394, ISBN 978-81-7791-250-0
  4. George, Sobin (2015), “Caste and Care: Is Indian Healthcare Delivery System Favourable for Dalits?” ISEC Working Paper 350, ISBN 978-81-7791-206-7
  5. George, Sobin (2014), “New Forms of Retail Trade and the Trajectories of Urban Exclusion in India: A Review”, ISEC Working Paper,No.313, ISBN 978-81-7791-169-5
  6. George, Sobin (2012) “Dalit Christians in India: Discrimination, Development Deficit and the Question for Group-Specific Policies” Indian Institute of Dalit Studies, Working Paper Series, Vol VI, No. 02
  7. George, Sobin and Naseem, Deeba, “Hostel Schemes for Dalit Students: How Inclusive and Incentive Oriented for Higher Education?”, IIDS Working Paper Series, Vol IV, No. 7, 2010 with Deeba Naseem
  8. George, Sobin, “Labour Rights and Sportswear Production in India: A Study of Soccer Ball Industry in Jalandhar”, CEC Working Paper, 2008

Popular articles and Reviews

  1. George, Sobin and Paranjpe, The Frontline Interventions of National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme in Karnataka during Covid-19 Pandemic: Challenges and the Way Ahead, ISEC policy Brief-46, September 2021
  2. George, Sobin: Drug development and disease burden in India: Conflicting priorities and possible solutions, ISEC Policy brief -28, July 2019
  3. George, Sobin: Hidden cost of negligence in PHCs, Deccan Herald (in perspective), May 3, 2017,
  4. George, Sobin: Budget 2016: Not healthy for health sector, Deccan Chronicle, March 1, 2016,
  5. “The Caste Continuities and the Social Gap” (Book Review), Bridging the Social Gap: The Perspectives on Dalit Empowerment, edited by Sukhadeo Thorat and Nidhi Sadana Sabharwal, Sage Publications, New Delhi, Journal of Social and Economic Change, Vol. 16. No. 2, July-December 2014, ISSN 0972 – 5792
  6. The No Nonsense Guide to Minority Rights in South Asia by Rita Manchanda”, The Seminar, 602, October 2009, ISSN 0971-6742

Recent presentation of papers for international conferences and workshops

  1. “Contribution of Informal Sector to India’s GDP”, by Sobin George and Indrajit Bairagya, at Workshop on Informal Sector, on 10-11 October 2022, at NASS, New Delhi
  2. “Annual mobilities: The role of pilgrimage-leisure trips in reproducing culture in urban slums” by Prajwal Nagesh, Ajay Bailey, Sobin George & Lekha Subaiya at the International Seminar titled “Cities on the move: Inclusive transport motilities for South Asian cities” on 13-14 at ISEC, Bengaluru
  3. “Estimating Informal Sector’s Contribution to Output and Employment in India” by Indrajit Bairagya & Sobin George, at Conference on Indian Economy, 29-30 November 2022, CDS, Trivandrum
  4. George, Sobin, “From stigmatization to Cooperation COVID-19 and the shifting discourses of resilience in the public sphere influenced by faith-based organizations in India” paper presented at the Seminar on Impact of Covid 19 Pandemic on the Socio-economic life of Religious Minorities in Karnataka, conducted by the centre for social exclusion, National Law School, Bangeluru on 18 July 2022
  5. “Desirability of public heath cadre in the South Indian States”. Mohan Rao and Sobin George at the workshop titled “Desirability of a public health cadre in the Indian states” on 8 November 2021 at Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bengaluru
  6. “Transport disadvantage: understanding ageing and mobility in the peripheral Bengaluru”. Prajwal, N., Ajay Bailey, Sobin George, Dick Ettema and Lekha Subaiya at 13th International (Online) Conference on “Transportation Planning and Implementation Methodologies for Developing Countries (TPMDC)”, organized by Transportation Systems Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering, IIT Bombay, on 10 December 2020
  7. “Indian Academia.Inc” P. Omkar Nadh and Sobin George at , International Conference titled Locating and Timing Matters: Significance and agency of STS in emerging worlds held on 21st August 2020 at Prague, Czech Republic organized by Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) [ Session organizer Julian David Cortes Sanchez, School of Management, Univ ersidad del Rosario].
  8. “One village and many narratives: the problematic of explaining change in caste relations” at International seminar on Change and Mobility in Contemporary India: Thinking M. N. Srinivas Today, 29th-30th August 2017, ISEC, Bengaluru.
  9. “Organising India’s Service Sector Workers: The Case of UNITES”, Sobin George at the International workshop on Organising ICT workers to expand south-south partnership in ICTS sector organised by UNI Nepal Laison Council at Kathmandu from 16-19th February 2015
  10. “Does social profile of healthcare providers matter? Continuing challenges of inclusion in the health delivery system in India, Sobin George at the international seminar titled Health System Strengthening: Experience from some countries on 6-7 November 2014 at Institute for Public Enterprises (IPE), Hyderabad
  11. “Changing Villages in Karnataka: Caste and its Re-organisations” Sobin George at the International Summer School titled Transformation of Religion and Culture in Contemporary India at Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Groningen, Holland on 20th August 2014.
  12. “India’s Retail Trade Revolution: The Socio Religious Dimensions Possible Employment Loss and New Forms of Urban Exclusion” Sobin George at national seminar titled Poverty and social exclusion in India: Need for paradigm shift towards an inclusive Society, jointly organized by Christ University and ISEC Bangalore at Christ University on 13th March 2014.
  13. “Ship Breaking Workers in India and Bangladesh” Sobin George at the workshop titled Poverty reduction and workers in hazardous metal sectors at Bangladesh Institute of Labour Studies (BILS), Dhaka, Bangladesh on 16th-19th January 2014.
  14. “New Forms of Retail Trade and the Weak among Vulnerable in India” Sobin George at the International Seminar on Opening up, Cooperation and Economic Growth, Organised by Sichuan Academy of Social Science (SASS) and ISEC at Chengdu, China, 25th-26th, October 2013.
  15. “Dalit Christians in India: Discrimination and Inter-group Disparities inhuman Development”, Sobin George at Dissemination workshop of IPAP Research Programme, at India Islamic Centre, New Delhi on 26th September 2011.
  16. “Disparities in Health Outcomes of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in India: Correlates of Discrimination and Isolation”, Sobin George at International Seminar organised by Indian Council of Social Science Research and National Research Council of Thailand on 13th-14th November 2010, Bhopal.
  17. “Global Purchasing Practices of Garment Retailers and Impact on Working Conditions” Sobin George at International Campaign Forum organized by Clean Clothes Campaign and Thai Labour Campaign on 26th-29th November 2007 at Bangkok, Thailand.
  18. “Feasibility of an International Commodity Agreement for Tea” Sobin George at 2nd International Tea Day Conference organized by Institute of Social Development on 13th-15th December 2006 at Kandy, Sri Lanka.
  1. Principal Investigator (with Dr. Channamma Kambara): Status of Dombara Community in Karnataka: An Ethnographic Study, Funded by Ambedkar Research Institute, Dept. of Social Welfare, Government of Karnataka (2022-23)
  2. Principal Investigator (with Dr. Indrajit Bairagya): Estimating the share of informal sector in India: Funded by the National Alliance for Social Security (2021-2023)
  3. Principal Investigator: Desirability of a Public Health Cadre in the States of India: Funded by Thakur Family Foundation, Inc. The US. (2021-2023)
  4. Principal Investigator (With Prof. S. Madeshwaran): Survey And Identification Of Beggars In Bengaluru City: Funded by the Central Relief Committee, Ministry of Social Welfare, Government of Karnataka (2021-2023)
  5. Co-Principal Investigator (India): Inclusive Cities through Equitable access to Urban Mobility Infrastructures for India and Bangladesh in collaboration with Utrecht University, Manipal Academy for Higher Education, University of Delhi, Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology and BRAC Institute of Governance and Development Funded by the Netherlands Scientific Organisation (NOW-NOTRO), The Netherlands (Principal Investigator: Dr. Ajay Bailey, Utrecht University). (2019-2024)
  1. Project Director: Informed choice and affordability: linkages of doctor-patient interactions, prescription practices and affordability in cancer care in Karnataka, Funded by the India Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), New Delhi (2019-2022)
  2. Principal Investigator: Tuberculosis and the Social Construction of Women’s Employability: A Study of Women with History/Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Bangalore City, Funded by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), New Delhi (2018-2021)
  3. Project Director: Research and Development (R&D) in Preventive and Therapeutic Healthcare in India: Implications for Public Health, 2019 (ISEC, Bangalore).
  4. Project Director: “Discrimination and Patterns of Health Seeking Behaviour of Dalit and Muslim Communities in selected villages of Karnataka” Supported by the Indian Council of Social Science Research, New Delhi. 2017
  5. Project Director: “Advancements in Social Science Knowledge Production: Approaches, Paradigms and Practices”, Department of Higher Education, Government of Kerala, 2016
  6. Project Director: “Trade and Marginialisation: Review of the Probable Impacts of FDI in Retail Sector on Marginalised Communities in India”, Supported by the Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore, 2013.
  7. Independent Researcher: “Inter-group Disparities in Human Development with Special Reference to Dalit Christians” for Indian Institute of Dalit Studies (IIDS), New Delhi, March 2011.
  8. Independent Researcher: “Status of Tribals in India: Level of Poverty and Access to Amenities”, Supported by Christian Aid, UK, 2010.
  9. Project Director: “Impact Study of Scheduled Caste Development Programme” Supported by Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India, 2009.
  10. Independent Researcher: “Labour Rights and Sportswear Production in India: A Study of Soccer Ball Industry in Jalandhar, Punjab” for the Global report “Clearing the Hurdles: Steps to Improving Wages and Working Conditions in the Global Sportswear Industry”, 2008.
  11. Independent Researcher: Work Organisation and Labour Practices in Toyota Kirloskar and Samsung India” as part of Asian Trans National Corporations Monitoring Network Research of Asia Monitor Resource Centre (AMRC), Hong Kong, 2007.
  • Assistant Director (November 2010 to June 2012) at Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), New Delhi
  • Fellow (December 2008 to October 2010) at Indian Institute of Dalit Studies (IIDS), New Delhi
  • Researcher, Project Officer and Programme Officer (October 2005 to March 2008) at Centre for Education and Communication (CEC), New Dellhi

Assistant Professor, CSSCD
Institute for Social and Economic Change
Nagarabhavi P.O. BANGALORE-560072, India
Ph: 080-23215468
skype: george.sobin

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