Research in any field is a vital way of engaging with a subject. Throughout the years, academia and research fields have led to drastic improvements in society be it the Keynesian thought after World War II, or the biological research or the development of healthcare, researchers have been at the forefront of societal progress. Therefore, it is alarming to see that the current system of education prevalent in India does not support or foster research skills in students.
On the contrary, it lies in a rote-learning system, whether directly or indirectly. Due to this, we do not hear the news of high-school or college-level students being published in journals or even engaging in research. This brings us to the question, what prevents students from entering into research fields?
The answer is multifaceted and can be divided into 2 major factors
Some time back, I was working with think-tanks and research organizations in New Delhi, such as the Central Square Foundation and the Center for Civil Society. Although I was fortunate to have been working with top researchers in this field, I realized that most other students, especially those in high-school, are not. Most media publications and top sites, although accept their articles, barely publish any work from students. In India, there is no journal centric to high-school students in any field; as opposed to other countries, such as the US, where journals such as the Concorde Review, Frontiers for Young Minds, and other student-centric journals actively publish the work of students exclusively.
This lack of opportunity makes students disinterested in research as a whole. If they don’t see their work published, or even have smaller opportunities for the same, they are turned off from this activity.
In the United States, the systems in place and schooling norms have fostered an environment where research projects are essential. The final grade is also affected by the quality and interest with which such projects are conducted. International Boards such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) also require Extended Essays (E.E) assignments, where research skills are developed and merely knowledge of the curriculum is not tested; rather, an application and genuine understanding/engagement with the subject matter is conducted.
However, there are no such provisions in the Indian Educational System. While some boards, such as the Indian School Certificate (ISC) do require ‘board projects,’ none of these go to the length of developing research skills of students. Schools do not teach this in their classes and do not require research projects and papers. Similar is the case with most universities on an undergrad level.
This prevents the youth from developing skills, as well as a genuine interest in research, especially in the social sciences and policy areas. This has grave consequences in the long run.
Well, who are we? And how do we aim to solve these problems?
The YRLC Journal is an academic research journal and research platform modelled similar to other western Academic Research Journals, where students can publish articles and pieces about public policy, governance, and politics with the sole aim of making policy recommendations that are essential in bettering the quality of governance and polity of India, and the world at large. In an attempt to equip the youth to bring about policy change, and develop their social ventures, we cover a diverse range of policy issues. The Journal publishes articles in the fields of Economic Policy, Foreign Policy, Environmental Policy, Educational Policy, LGBTQIA+ and Women’s Rights, and Legal Policy. Writers can submit an article of 1,000-7,000 words to our email address; after which, a team will review these to publish in the particular regions of the website.
Our editorial board consists of those who are a part of top institutions, such as Amnesty International and have volunteered at Indian Civil Liberties Union. We work individually on your work and develop your research skill, and provide you with the platform to publish your work.
We publish on a volume-to-volume Basis and have received submissions through India and the World, from the US, Australia, and Spain.
To learn more, or to get involved with us, visit yrlc.in.