Saturday, January 1, 2011

LPG, Reforms and Management Education!

India, embarked on republic status and planned era immediately after independence in 1947.  Constitution was well drafted by the elders and brought into implementation in 1950-51. Socialistic pattern was also adopted while focussing simultaneously on Agriculture (Primary Sector), Industry (Manugacturing-Secondary Sector) and Services (Tertiary Sector) through the Five Year Plans. Areas were clearly demarcated between Center and State Governments.  Of course, the Constitution was amended about one hundred times in last sixty years for social or political reasons.  Banks and Financial Institutions were either set up or nationalised with a view to take the developmental efforts to the grass roots; but there has been urban and rural divide.

Education is stated to be a State subject.  However, Centre also keeps involving in evolving policies, in particular when concerned about setting up IITs, IIMs, NITs and Central Universities.  In the recent era of reforms in the name of Liberalisation, Privatisation and Globalisation several changes are taking place in the Education sector.  The extent of proliferation of Engineering Colleges needs to be discussed because the Degree Colleges for Arts, Sciences and Commerce have almost been eased out.  Whether we have good infrastructure or qualified teaching fraternity, these mushrooming Engineering Colleges have been started by politicians or ex-people's representatives as an money making mechanism.  And then Government also opened up to set up more and more IIMs, IITs, Private Universities, Deemed Universities in recent years. 

In the space of Management Education, thanks to increasing privatisation there has been uncontrollable proliferation of MBA colleges (or PGDM Institutions) under University System, as also as autonomous colleges.  The regulator has been very liberal (!) in allowing more and more such institutions because private sector has been growing steadily during reforms era and absorbing these management graduates but the question again whether even these institutions have adequate infrastructure like libraries, class rooms, computer laboratories let alone qualified teaching personnel.  Of late, more than twenty business magazines and market research organisations have been carrying out ranking and playing havoc with the aspirants.

And very recently there seem to be some developments that the regulator is toying with the idea of streamlining the large size of MBA colleges or PGDM Institutions particularly those in private hands under the so called autonomous system.  A notification appeared recently that there would be standard duration of 24 months, Admissions procedure, fee structure curriculum, evaluation, etc to be decided by the State Governments concerned or the regulator in the immediate months.  We have got to see how the field shapes up.  All in the name of Reforms!

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