Fee hike, entrepreneurship push on IIMs’ top agenda in 2015

MUMBAI: With six new Institutes of Management (IIMs) set to start operations from the forthcoming session, 2015 will be a big year for the country’s premier management institutions. The older lot have been making efforts to emerge as brands to reckon with in India and internationally, while the more recent entrants have been trying to come into their own. A greater focus on diversity, research and entrepreneurship as well as more fee hikes are what we are likely to see this year.
 Fee hikes

MBA students across the country can brace themselves for another round of fee hikes at some of India’s top business schools as the hiring scenario improves and pay packages go up. IIM Ahmedabad hiked the fee for its flagship PGP programme from Rs 16.6 lakh to Rs 18.5 lakh from the 2015-17 session. The PGPX course fee is also being raised to Rs 24 lakh from Rs 21.5 lakh.

Among those likely to follow suit are IIM Bangalore, which like its Ahmedabad counterpart, hasn’t raised its course fees in two years. A decision on this will only be taken after its board meeting in early January, says an institute spokesperson. Other institutes which could consider a fee hike include IIM Indore, IIM Lucknow and IIM Tiruchirapalli, though sources declined to comment. “We haven’t raised our fee hikes since our inception but any decision will only be taken after our board meeting in March, said IIM Trichy director Prafulla Agnihotri. “Right now we are evaluating our cost structure.”

However, institutes such as IIM Calcutta, which raised its fees in the 2014-16 session, are unlikely to go in for another revision.

Focus on Research

The leading business schools plan to focus on research and encourage more professors to publish papers in top journals. The quantity and quality of papers will push their ranking among global B-schools many notches higher.

This December, IIM Ahmedabad announced it has raised .`20 crore from corporate tie-ups and will spend it on research in financial markets, infrastructure and entrepreneurship. Among the newer lot, IIM Trichy ensured most of its professors published papers in topranking journals. The college also reportedly sends two professors every year to Harvard, and others are expected to follow suit.

In October, IIM-B started a programme wherein faculty members have to develop research in their country of focus to build domain expertise. Japan, China, Dubai and Singapore have been identified so far. “IIM Bangalore has a threepronged strategy with a focus on research and publications, internationalisation and innovation and entrepreneurship in its quest to become a management school recognised globally for excellence in research and teaching programmes,” says Devanath Tirupati, dean academic.
 The college has established the Centre for Financial Markets to support interdisciplinary empirical research using data on Indian and other emerging markets. “The vision of this initiative is to be India’s most comprehensive research data source,” adds Tirupati.
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