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There is is a broad empirical and theoretical literature attempting to explain the causes and consequences social exclusion. An emerging body of policy research questions the effectiveness of efforts, such as affirmative action or reservations, designed to reduce inequality and improve the economic and social well-being of socially excluded groups. In the Indian context, this debate revolves around the caste system and the designation of "untouchables" or Dalits. Professor Thorat will discuss the theory and empirical realities of excluded groups and offer new insights about public policies designed to remedy social exclusion and over-inclusion.