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Bring pan-IIM Board under HRD: panel

The IIM Review Committee has suggested that the pan-IIM board’s secretariat should be within the HRD Ministry.

Written by Anubhutivishnoi | New Delhi |
October 24, 2008 12:52:15 am

The IIM Review Committee has suggested that the pan-IIM board’s secretariat should be within the HRD Ministry. It has slammed IIMs for not “reacting to the market need quickly enough”, said that IIM Board directors and chairmen have failed to be effective CEOs, pointed at a ‘lack of mutual confidence and trust between the IIM and the Government’, and recommended that a common interview be held for all IIMs.

The Indian Express had earlier reported how the three member committee has made a series of recommendations that will amount to tighter Government control on the premier institutes. The committee has called for the creation of an overarching 15-member pan-IIM board reconstitution of all existing boards. It has said that Secretary, Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry, will be part of this Board.

With the Board’s office housed in the ministry, doubts over how much control the HRD Ministry will wield on IIMs are sure to be raised. The committee’s suggestion to re-constitute all IIM boards with the help of a committee headed by the HRD Secretary is an exercise that defeats the autonomy of IIM boards.

The committee has come down heavily on the IIMs in the ‘performance report’ and said that ‘if IIMs have not performed as well as they should have in some areas, it is necessary to take a close look at the roles played by the directors and their boards’. The report has said that ‘IIMs could not react to the market quickly enough. They were not able to expand their physical infrastructure or recruit faculty fast enough to meet this growth expectation’.

The committee has accused IIMs of lagging behind leading global business schools in publishing papers in internationally peer-reviewed management journals and not making it to the rankings in international business journals.

Regarding faculty, the committee has called for fixing of “higher level base salaries”, though it has put a cap on the consultancy and executive training programmes. The committee has recommended that time spent on these by the faculty should be limited to 90 days in a year with not more than 40 days during the nine month period when the institute is running post-graduate programmes.

It has said that IIMs should sponsors students for PhDs and arrange their placement in good institutions, but make them to sign a bond to teach for five years after completion of the PhD or repay the amount spent on them.

In a recommendation that could benefit IIM aspirants, the committee has recommended that besides a common entrance exam, IIMs should have a common interview on the lines of the civil services interview.

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