Global World & Quality of Management Education in India


By

Dr. Ashutosh Priya
Reader & Dean (FD)
Department of Management Studies
Amrapali Institute of Management & Computer Applications
Shiksha Nagar, Lamachaur, Haldwani-263 139, UA
 


Abstract

The concept of global village and the revolution in the area of information technology is increasing integration of economies around the globe and attainment of global competitiveness has become a necessity for the survival and growth, business paradigms are shifting continuously providing enormous amount of creative opportunities to grasp the future. In the era of global competitiveness, we have to exercise utmost care to safeguard India's interest to see that India does not loose in the international arena. In the era of these fast emerging changes, there is a need for future global managers with qualities and competencies in global perspective.

In management education, quality has become a necessity and the circumstances require total quality management. The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious. To make India an intellectual capital of the world, we have to rethink about the management education and effort should be made to create a dynamic environment, which can nurture superior quality technical education colleges.

The paper is an effort to examine the current management education system and to find out the ways for the total quality management in the present management education system so that business schools respond to current paradigms.

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The post liberalization period witnessed a greater need of professional education. The 21st century promises to herald a different environment for human development in all walks of life, including education. It is going to be knowledge -driven century resulting a need of greater reform in all education related activities like teaching, learning, evaluating, natural production, curriculum revision, administration production etc.

Management education in India is not very old; it has taken its practical shape during early sixties with establishment of Indian Institute of Management to train the people with management concepts. After that many institutions, universities have also come forward to provide management education to cater the increasing demand of good managers. The concept of global village and the revolution in the area of information technology is increasing integration of economies around the globe & attainment of global competitiveness has become a necessity for the survival & growth. The liberalization of Indian economy has resulted in a highly competitive environment, great all round emphasis on technology, quality, and greater concern in society for the environmental issue & unprecedented development and use of information technology.

It is also felt in the era of globalization, that to meet out the challenges of change a private precondition for enhancing global competitiveness of Indian Industry is the creation of close, multilateral cooperative linkages among the government, industry, labor & academic. For this requirement includes institutions of higher education & research in management, science & technology etc. Liberalization & globalization has also provided a general for popping up of tens & hundreds of private commercial management courses & institutes but the very attitude, quality, ethics, standards, openness creativity, logistics etc. essential for professional are missing in most of the institutions of management education. The result is that management education in India today is in a sorry stage of disrepair, it does not mean that demand is going down but it is the result of bad quality production. If this will continue than Indian MBAs will hardly in demand as global managers.

The process of liberalization & globalization has created enormous opportunities & challenges & in the era of global competitiveness, we have to exercise utmost care to safeguard, India's interest to see that India does not loose in international arena. In the era of these fast emerging changes, there is a need for future global managers with qualities and competencies in global perspective. Quality is the only currency, which is accepted universally & it is also true in the case when product is education. Every customer is now quality conscious & it is also imperative that a passion for quality is developed in the International as well as Indian psyche. In management education, quality has become a necessity & circumstances require total quality management. The make India a intellectual capital of the world we have to rethink about the management education & effort should be made to create a dynamic environment, which can quality technical education colleges.

A recent research paper by Dr Bowonder, director, Tata Management Training Centre (TMTC), Pune, and Prof SL Rao, Chairman, Board of Studies, AIMA-Centre for Management Studies on 'Management Education in India: Its evolution & some contemporary issues' seeks to identify the issues in the context of global trends in managing business education and attempts to give a possible direction for change. As part of its recommendations, the AIMA-sponsored study has suggested the setting up of a National Task Force to address major issues plaguing management education in India. The task force should consider setting up the All India Council for Management Education, quite independent of the AICTE, to monitor the functioning of the 1,000 odd management institutes, it says. This will ensure that there is an independent institutional mechanism to specifically deal with management education and also give it a new thrust.

Objective: The paper is an effort to examine the current management education system & to find out ways for quality improvements in the present management education system so that business schools respond to current paradigms.

Present Scenario: Starting with the establishment of 4 Indian Institutes of Management Calcutta (1961), Ahmedabad (1962), Banglore (1973), Lucknow (1984), the setting up of XLRI, Jamshedpur and the offering of full time/part time MBA programmes by some leading universities in the country. Recently and particularly during the last 8-9 years the country has witnessed a tremendous growth in the founding of management institutions most of them in private sector offering management programs in different functional areas of management. Concurrently, there is a mushrooming of B-schools in the country: over 1,700 institutes, of which about 900 are certified by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), leading to issues of quality. In this context it becomes essential to re-examine the entire structure, content, purpose and pattern of management education.

Some of the common feature of most of the management/business education courses, in which quality important is regard, can be summed up, as under.

  • Poor coverage of Indian business & socio- economic environment with less global perspective.
  • More emphasis on theoretical aspects.
  • Use of out-dated case-material.
  • Least institute-industry linkage.
  • Lack of research base.
  • Poor admission procedure.
  • Inadequacy of resources & infrastructure.
  • Old pedagogy.
  • Traditional evaluation system.

Quality & Management Education:

The qualitative aspect of management education is also as important as its technical aspects. Management Education should not just equip a student with technical skills and expertise, but also develop in him the right attitude. For instance Japan is considering a new legislation, where intellectual property can be considered as a security against loan and if we want to emerge as an economic power, we will have to do so through instilling quality in our management education. It should be our endeavor to produce world class technical & management personnel who would be sought globally. Total quality management should be inducted to make the management education effective. TQM is a style of management that has worked for several decades overseas and is receiving growing attention in the United States. Now some colleges and universities are beginning to recognize that TQM values are more compatible with higher education than many existing management systems.

Modern education & development will be deprived of its élan vital (Creative, evaluations, potential) when structured & delivered under a rigid regime of formalism, objectivity & standardization. Quality relevance & effectiveness of management education & development do not seem to depend upon formalism, structure & standardization. If management profession & practice are reckoned & moulded as an "art" rather than as "science", its educational programming escapes the pitfalls of formalism, structure & standardization; creativity, flexibility, subjectivity, & the informality replace the conscripted mode of training & development in management.

In India, All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) is entrusted with the responsibility of regulating, controlling & ensuring the quality of management education in the country. The formation of National Board of Accreditation (NBA) & the of workshops that it had organized have contributed substantially to widespread awareness & concern for the quality of management education, but can the AICTE in all honesty, claim that their approvals would result in quality management education of global standard.

According to Bill Gates, The chairman of Microsoft Corporation, U.S.A.," You need to have specialized knowledge a skill while maintaining a broad perspective…No one should assume that the expertise he has today will suffice tomorrow, so a willingness to lean is critical". This statement is also resulting in a need of quality improvement with the change. So a strong relationship exists between the principles of Total Quality Management & the best practices of management education.

As the area change is taking place in economic, political & technological environment the world over, new opportunities are opening which are prepared to fight mediocrity & quality in every aspect of life is becoming the essential for survival. So there is an urgent need to reform the quality of management education for the creation of quality intellectual infrastructure in India.

In the context of the imperative needs of Indian economy & the preconditions of multilateral corporation among wealth-creating national entities, the following broad themes & dimensions of management teaching and research seem to be emerging.

  • Requirement of well coordinated & flexible orchestration of the government's industrial technology, trade, education, labor, rural development, infrastructure & economic policies directed toward expansion & technological up gradation of all national economy in an ongoing manner.
  • Management of technology & innovation towards continual strengthening of the country's & the companies technological capabilities through innovation; technology acquisition, assimilation & development, skill formation & both short & long-term collaborative development of nationally relevant core technologies.
  • Identification & creation of an easily accessible bank of best industry practices across the world in all areas ranging from production & marketing to finance, logistics & R&D.
  • Enhancement of the nation-wide development & use of information technology for development & use of information technology for accelerating towards break through improvements in cost-reduction, speed, output, quality & performance.
  • Extensive use of business process reengineering & Total Quality Management in & by Indian enterprise towards raising their productivity & quality to world class levels.

Thrust Areas of Management Education requiring Quality improvements:

Course Curriculum:

There is a need to improvise our curriculums in the way to made it applied & realistic. Syllabi should be revised & updated regularly. But it is difficult to make it possible due to long & tedious procedure for introducing any change in the curriculum & syllabus. The whole cycle of change requires a long time, mostly more than an academic session, & the proposal will be accepted as desired is not guaranteed, sufferer necessarily be a student, even if he is paying for the service. So, it is the need of today to make the arrangements for the easy process, by which student who is deprived of the latest knowledge & can get the benefit. In short it can be said that research orientation in curriculum is required. The content of the curriculum should be such that there is similarity between the rationality that is taught in the classroom and the ground reality, which a student has to actually face. Projects assigned should be more practical and students should go back to the same organisations to study various departments like HR, finance and marketing, in order to get a holistic understanding.

Faculty Development:

Faculty members being the most crucial factor in the management education process, it is a stupendous task to meet the faculty needs of the rapidly expending management institution system. There is an acute shortage of high quality management teachers, particularly in the functional areas like marketing, finance & also integrative subjects like strategic management. Faculty selection should be made on merit only & compromises should not be the part of selection. Full time permanent faculty should be encourages, so that they can devote full-time for the organization. Faculty should also be involved in the administration role. This is an urgent need to plan a crash program to train management teachers at selected management institution, & also to limit the expansion of the system to what is sustainable with out sacrificing the faculty quality. The  quality of faculty is going down as more and more institutes mushroom with the aim of making money rather than enhancing the quality of education.

Development of teaching materials & case studies:                

Very few institutions in the country have been able to develop adequate teaching materials including case in terms of Indian ethics in management. So there is a need to venture wide-spread management research including case research & publications indigenously 

Institute- Industry linkages:

It is now essential to make the changes according to changing environment to meet the challenges of globalization and liberalization. Therefore it is necessary for the management institutions to have linkages between business and industry to understand their requirement and reorient teaching, training consultancy and research activities. Institutes should involve senior executives as faculty for exposing the students to real problems & exposures of industry. Also interaction of faculty and executives should be made possible by organizing and conferences. The present system of business interaction (six-eight weeks) is quite inadequate. It is necessary to have longer summer trainings, perhaps even extended up to one full term. Assessment should also be based on internship.

Government role:

A quality improvement by transparency in the management education is possible only with the help of government only like selection of experts on the monitoring panel should be based on certain qualitative parameters or criteria. Taking into consideration their professional background should carefully draw the panel and admirable achievements, the appointment should not be on the basis of position government role should be more monitoring then controlling and the relationship between government and institutions should be based on trust not on distrust. More liberty should be provided to private institutions, with some qualitative directors. University system it self needs to be revamped and restructured in the light of present dynamic environment

Placement:

The provision of placement is an activity which is reducing the identity of educational institutional as place of academic but student are taking.

Admission to using label and institute are taking the shape of the agency to seeking the employment opportunity placement all should be treated as the platform to interaction between student and prospective employees. it should create opportunity for students for getting exposed  to the relatives of job market .it should facilitates in sensitizing the student to be down to earth to know where the stand .So placement should be de- linked from academic institutions in the sense that  placement cell should not be treated as an employment bureau.

Pedagogy:

The central concern in all the pedagogy is interaction between traders, student & content which is basically dynamic and triadic in nature. The 21st century has opened new hopes for re-engineering our approach to pedagogical producers at all levels of education in the new domain of information technology. Needless to observe that main focus of pedagogy still remains the art of disseminating and relating knowledge to the needs and mental equipment's of the educated now it is the need that pedagogy should be more learner centered than centered than trainer centered, more case input than lecture method more remainder  workshops to envelope deep thinking on the subject ;more exposure to realities of industries and work environment  ,project method should be cased to promote discovery learning , more emphasis on simulation ,role playing , socio -drama  .

Values:

 Future managers should know the practical aspects of work ethics, like how ethics can be developed, how they can be managed at workplace, how individual makes his/her values, what are the contents of ethics which can be utilized to motivate human resources at work place since  "organizations are not having ethics only people have." This paper is an attempt to find out practical aspect of ethics at work place, which may be a useful tool for the future managers. At AIMA Conference while discussing values the points that came up were that values are something that cannot be defined and taught, they are only inculcated over a period of time. There is some mismatch between recruiters' expectations and Indian B-school graduates, as the recruiters look for completely dependable graduates on whom the company or the organisation can rely. But no management institute can produce such students, as this is not a value, but a skill. An institute can only enhance existing values/skills, but can't create them. So is the case with creativity. Business ethics is something that shouldn't be compromised. Developing values that enable decision-making in grey areas characterised by inadequate information or conflicts (like profit vs integrity) is a tricky issue.

Governance:

One important topic which was discussed at AIMA conference was the governance of institutions should be transparent. There should only be one body with norms specified for accreditation or ranking of B-schools. Government bodies should not interfere with ranking and accreditation issues. The government should only lay down the norms, rules and regulations or, in case of the curriculum, lay down the broad outlines. It should be mandatory for all the institutes to comply with the criteria, but they should still have autonomy in fields like selection of students, faculty, up-gradation of courses etc. This rating creates a feeling of competition and helps other institutes set benchmarks for them.

Conclusion:

So, it can be concluded that the existence of an institution shall depend upon the quality of education and training offered. Now principle of Darwin holds well even today that fittest that would survive. The existing education in management is mainly large industry oriented to meet the domestic needs of manufacturing sector. New it is the need to make it as per the demand for managers for international Business Information Technology, medium and small scale industries and for service sector, because in future fittest will survive for which quality product service will be the key aspect. To ensure quality in management education, inclusion of BPR, IDR & ISO9000 and ISO1000 etc. can be utilized.

As per the words of Cyrus Guzdev, CEO, Airflight Express, the state of management education in India, "The B-schools are not sufficiently in touch with the real world, and the pace of change, which is challenging management through today, is threatening their credibility".

So, it is an immediate requirement to shape the management education in accordance with the global changes to improve competitiveness with the total quality management. 

Now, I would like to conclude in the words of Mother Teresa, a lady who believed in the power of one individual's contribution.

"We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in an ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop."

References:

1. An agenda for reforming management education, Financial Express ( Net Edition), Saturday, November 20, 2004

2. B-schools on the March: Business World, March 22 –April 6 1999, Pg: 22-34.

3. Dhar, Upinder, Managing: Educational Services with special references to a management education in India. University News, 38(20), May 15, 8-11.

4. Gupta, P.K.(2000) : Excellence in Higher Technical Education Indian Management , April;73-80

5. Khandai, Sujata: Dismal State of Management Education, Indian Management; Jan.2000.

6. Krishna, Vijay: Institute Quality in management Education, Indian Management; June 2000.

7. Narendran, R & Narendran,V(2000): Changing Scenario of Management Education in India , University News, 38(50); December 11;4-5

8. Naik, B.M.(2000): Industry –University Partnership, Global Trends and Relevance for India, University News, April 14; 5-7

9. Shollapur, M.R.(1999): Quality in Management Education: A perspective, University News ; 37(36), 1-5.

10. Stuart Crainer: "Key Management Ideas "Macmillan India Ltd., 1997, P-195.

11. Trehaan, Allpana (2000) : Total Quality in Management Education Implementing the Operative Schemata through effective Learning System, University News, 38(23); June 5,1-6.
 


Dr. Ashutosh Priya
Reader & Dean (FD)
Department of Management Studies
Amrapali Institute of Management & Computer Applications
Shiksha Nagar, Lamachaur, Haldwani-263 139, UA
 

Source: E-mail August 20, 2007

         

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