Established: 1961 Top-scoring parameters: Academic Excellence, Placements, Corporate Connectedness
Differentiator: Pioneer of management education and excellent faculty
The second Indian Institute of Management to be established after Calcutta, IIM-A has been the most sought after business school in India. With eminent physicist Vikram Sarabhai as its founding director, the institute has come a long way since the governments of India and Gujarat and the industrial sector joined hands for nurturing management talent in India. The initial collaboration with Harvard Business School was also responsible for shaping the institute’s approach to education.
The school has a 100-acre heritage campus designed by Louis Kahn, one of the most influential architects of the 20th century. According to the institute’s website, 800 full-time students and 1,500 executives are enrolled in courses every year and are attended to by 84 full-time faculty members (all with PhDs). The institute has partnered with 60 business schools across 23 countries and has five long duration programmes. Apart from being the premier B-School in the country, IIM-A now figures in the top 50 B-Schools of the world. Padma Bhushan awardee and L&T Chief A.M. Naik is the current Chairman of IIM-A and Ashish Nanda the current director. Nanda, who had graduated from the institute in 1983, was a faculty member with Harvard Business School.
The institute offers a mix of management programmes from entry-level to the executive level as well as a faculty development programme: Two-year Post-Graduate Programme in Management (PGP, equivalent to MBA); Two-year Post-Graduate Programme in Agri-business Management (PGP-ABM, equivalent to MBA); Fellow Programme in Management (FPM, equivalent to Ph.D.); One-year Post-Graduate Programme in Management for Executives (PGPX, equivalent to MBA); Faculty Development Programme (FDP) for Teachers in Universities and Colleges.
In 2008, IIM-A was the first business school in the country to receive the EQUIS (European Quality Improvement System) accreditation by the European Foundation for Management Development. The institute is also a pioneer of the case study approach to management education in India, thanks to its early collaboration with Harvard.
Many companies go to the institute for hiring entry-level managers and also training its leaders, the most recent example being Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. Though the institute boasts of a fantastic alumnus and has produced many of the CEOs and MDs, it has not been to leverage that effectively. And that is something that Naik and Nanda are planning to do.
In an interview to Business Standard, Nanda said, “In the past, the institute has been a bit lax in reaching out to our global community of alumni though that is also because it was engaged in local issues. However, in the last six months, our board of governors chairman and I, along with other senior colleagues have been reaching out to our alumni in various parts of the world. We have been to Mumbai alone three-four times and held alumni meetings. Internationally, we have been first time to Dubai, Boston and Chicago and will be going to Singapore for the first time, too. Other than that, we have had reunions in New York as well.”