Friday, September 17, 2010

Ambitious and Hungry to Learn

The day I decide to quit, I’ll teach. Why? Because any opportunity I get to express my views and shape opinion gets me going.

One of the things I’d like to do is to find a way to contribute to higher education in India. If the Indian government allows it, higher education should become more private owned like it has in the US. Higher education needs a lot of private intervention which is not just money but needs blood, sweat and tears in running and shaping it. It requires funding and resources, which are limited in India.

In countries like the US and UK, where Indians have migrated to in large numbers, teaching is one of the biggest professions in the Indian community. Mainly because it doesn’t require capital to be successful – it only needs the ability to learn and to teach. And knowing the English language as well as Indians do is a huge benefit.

The Dean of Harvard Business School, University of Chicago, UC Berkley and some other prominent institutes are all Indians. These are people from my generation. There is a clear demand and need. We have the capability but it’s abroad. We will need to create the ecosystem to match supply and demand. Most universities globally will need to find a way to participate in the Indian economy (through academia) but don't know how. Universities don't tend to have a Business Development or an M&A team whose job it is to grow hunt and mine. The philosophy and growth of the school largely depends on the faculty and the direction it takes.

So I’m thinking about how and where to start. I’ve already started talking to people who have similar thoughts and we may actually come together and do something.

The power of that effort has to be to get global thinking around teaching and learning into the country. The assumption is that we're a billion people - bright and talented, ambitious and hungry to learn. Even a small proportion of this population is a huge number. The problem is that there is a lack of expert quality academic professionals who know how to teach and impart knowledge and go down the journey of learning.


  1. First Reaction :

    Huge deficiency of capable teachers for an entire spectrum of any stream

    Investors in education in India are 80:20 fans - 80 Business of Making Money and 20 for imparting quality Education

    Indian kids are hungry for going abroad n quite "brand conscious"

    Often wondered y indian diaspora has not invested in education enterprises abroad when the catchment is so promising from home zone alone.

    Also cany b denied that ondian kids, if they return, start at higher levels/pedestal than their indian mates. Rgds

  2. In a recent meeting with the elite schools group, a discussion started regarding the education deprivation of the "other" India. They said why should they do anything when they pay taxes! With such existing mentality, corporate intervention should not only promote healthy initiatives but also pave the way for encouraging "profitable" models for these groups...much like ecomagination!

  3. i very much like your will be a great boon for the people like me who are eager to get the knowledged passed on by poineers like you in the outsourcing world..


  4. Nice thought and may be this might stop the brain drain.Our education system needs people who can bring practical knowledge with strong business acumen.
    On a funny note your sentence" Universities is to grow hunt and mine. " needs a comma between grow and hunt. It reminds me of a phrase Let's eat Grandma and Let's eat, Grandma. Punctuation saves lives :)

  5. I think school like ISB are bridging that gap but a lot more needs to be done because ISB is still relying on all profs from abroad

  6. This post reminds me of what JFK said-“Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education. The human mind is our fundamental resource.”
    I admire your vision. Growing an Ivy League equivalent 'culture of learning' in this country requires massive policy level changes. I'm afraid the recent foreign education bill is not of much help.
    When you mention the names of the Indian teachers who have done us proud in other countries, I am forced to think-When was the last time we had any professor of international repute, such as Prahlad,Vijay Govindrajan,Amartya Sen,Ghosal etc., walk the corridors of indian colleges.
    We certainly can do better than this..after all this is the land of 'gurukuls'
    Best wishes

  7. It is my first visit to your blog and like many of articles you have published, this impressed me, as well. I have serious thoughts about the way education as concept, is perceived in the country of billions. I believe in a philosophy that people act to succeed and prosper at a faster rate when there is competition or if its a question of survival. We are aware of the fact that foreign Universities are superior because of their evolving systems which attracts thousands of Indian students like magnet. However the Indian education is evolving at a much slower rate. We have yet not felt the loss that is incurred had we preserved and nourished this talent in our country... I believe that we need to perceive education as a basic necessity and developing the entire system as a priority. I wish all the best for your vision.


  8. Great thought!! Best of Luck in making this vision a reality!

  9. The concept of education you've thought of. is what required from many leaders like you. Wherein I would like to mention it's not the higher education but also the primary education in India needs to be looked at. Now what we do in Delhi, Mumbai or in Bangalore has nothing to do with the quality of primary/higher education, fact is most of the people who want invest in education or as you said "bright and talented, ambitious and hungry to learn" come from small places. So, let's include primary education and idea of going beyond capital cities to small towns.
    It's plasure reading what you think!!!

  10. Its a great thought ! but in India, quality is required for the primary education sector becasue if the kids of indians would be in the best primary education environment then they can proof theirselfs very lightly cause of best quality of primary education.

    Dr.Nitin Gupta