Abroad Going IIMs

IIMThe UPA government is reluctant to capitalise on the advantages build up by some of brand images of India. IIM one of the super brand built by India deserves to mint name, fame and money through its effective courses. The long due permission for this brand star in management education was given by the union HRD minister. Now IIM must go hammer and tongs to realise its global image.

The Times of India writes (15 October 2009)

The government on Friday handed twin Diwali gifts to the IIMs. It gave the prestigious management schools the go-ahead to set up
campuses abroad. It also agreed to leave the appointment of the board and director of an IIM to a collegium the composition of which is to be decided by IIMs themselves.

IIMs have been asked to decide the composition of the collegium by January 2010.

Announcing the decisions after his meeting with directors of IIMs, HRD minister Kapil Sibal said that the number of board members in each IIM will also be brought down to 13. “The collegium will suggest the names for appointment of the board members and the directors. The composition of the collegium will be restricted to 13 members,” he said .

The greenlight for foreign campuses marks a major shift since the UPA-1. The proposal by IIM-Bangalore to set up a campus in Singapore became a contentious issue during the tenure of former HRD minister Arjun Singh who said that the management schools were mandated to focus on the country.

Sibal justified the significant departure saying IIMs should be a global brand. He also said that though their prime responsibility was national, they could become an international brand. “Both can go hand in hand,” he said.

The HRD minister said while it was for IIMs to take the final decision on how they want to set up campuses abroad, he suggested they should come together to do it. In case the proposal of IIMs is accepted, Sibal said, their memorandum of association would be amended.

In the meeting with Sibal, the IIM directors accepted his suggestion on the collegium. This would mean that the Bhargava committee’s recommendation of a pan-IIM board would not be implemented. Sibal said the IIMs were not very enthusiastic with the idea of a pan-IIM board but they had accepted it.

The IIM directors expressed satisfaction with the new pay structure and promised to evolve a Performance Related Incentive Scheme. Each IIM has also agreed to come up with a vision document early next year for the next five years. Sibal asked the B-school directors to emphasise on affirmative action and look for ways to give more representation to women.

To bridge the gap between the old IIMs — all big brands now — and the new IIMs, Sibal suggested that the new ones be mentored by old ones. Just this year, six new IIMs will be set up. Sibal also felt that IIMs should have a flexible system under which a student can pursue certain credits from any IIM other than the institute he is admitted to.

In the meeting, the IIMs agreed to produce more post-doctoral fellows and give more importance to research. The B-schools would be provided enhanced IT facility as each of them would get one gigabyte connectivity, Sibal said.

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