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‘Focus On Triple Bottom Line Must’
NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar talks of management education and advocates a focus on the ‘triple bottom line’ of profits, the environment and the equity around it.
Photo Credit : Twitter
We must change this and think afresh. Be an innovative economy. Think of yourself as a global citizen and respect hierarchy NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar talks of management education and advocates a focus on the ‘triple bottom line’ of profits, the environment and the equity around it.
Management education in India has evolved significantly over the past seven decades. The rapid economic progress that followed liberalisation created a considerable demand for management degrees, leading to a plethora of both private and university affiliated business schools. Today, a startling 3,000 and more management institutes that teach more than 8,000 management courses, have cropped up around the country. “This is a large segment and we must reckon with this,” emphasises Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog.
The rapid mushrooming of these MBA schools often occurred with structural weaknesses. The pandemic revealed how technology could be a disruptor in the realm of education, but also created a situation where management graduates faced challenges finding employment. According to India’s Skill Report, 46 per cent of management graduates are unemployed. “Non-employability must be thought through and definitive actions must be taken to change this,” suggests Kumar.
He points to the big regional variation in these schools, revealing a ‘quantity versus quality’ conundrum. Standards of management programmes differ vastly across institutions. The student to teacher ratio is about 25:1, raising concerns. “It’s time to make quality an integral part of management education. We must review the regulatory and accreditation regimes that we have today. Even during his speech on this Independence Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi shed light on reviewing the regulatory and compliance regime and how we must completely focus on long-term thinking, instead of being caught up in a bureaucratic mindset. NITI Aayog and I will look for your inputs to improve this,” says Kumar.
The Challenges The New Education Policy has emphasised the multi-dynamic nature of education. Reports say AI is working well for industry, which incidentally could prove a potential threat to MBAs, as AI eliminates jobs.
“We must aim at having emotional rather than intelligence quotient in it. There is a need for empathy and cultural perspective. It is the time to rethink how we deliver management education and in the number of dimensions we deliver it,” says Kumar, referring to the potential threat of AI. He believes both online and offline management education would mould themselves to these emerging realities so that India may take advantage of AI and not be defensive about it, as it goes forward.
“The future is in hybrid. We must strive to make offline and online education equal, which is in sync with our ethos and guiding principles. Hence, there lies a huge challenge for management colleges to design online courses that combine our tradition with modern scientific thinking.”
Kumar urges businesses to think of the triple bottom line. “Don’t focus on making profits. Focus on taking care of the environment and equity around it. We must change this and think afresh. Be an innovative economy. Think of yourself as a global citizen and respect hierarchy,” was his parting advice.
As told to Soumya Sehgal
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.
Dr Rajiv Kumar
The author is Vice Chairman, NITI AayogMore From The Author >>