Dr Jacob John has a PhD in Economics and an MBA in Finance and has over 30 years of experience as an economist and social development specialist, particularly in managing several research projects in the fields of education, health, local governance, fiscal decentralization, and self-help groups. These projects were carried out for various ministries of the government of India, departments of different state governments, the Planning Commission of India and several international agencies. He is currently the Director of KDS–Delhi, a socio-economic research organization in India. He has served the United Nation Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in India and Italy as a national and international expert and has also worked with the Institute of Social Sciences, the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). Dr John has also published several books and articles concerning decentralized governance, local government economics and development economics.