More government servants enrol for special IIM-A programme

November 15th, 2008 - 5:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Ahmedabad, Nov 15 (IANS) A retired soldier, a doctor and an IAS officer are among 39 participants who have enrolled for a special programme at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, (IIM-A) aimed to enhance skills and broaden perspectives in public policy formulation.This year, the postgraduate programme in public management and policy (PGP-PMP) at IIM-A has 39 students, of which 20 are government servants, a marked improvement over last year which saw fewer participants from the public sector.

IIM-A professor Sebastian Morris, who heads the programme, said at a media interaction Friday: “We are looking for (financial) support from all types of organisations. I want more government participation and talks are underway in this regard. Benefits of improving governance helps the society at large including the private enterprise.”

Underlining public management today is restricted to private sector, he said that the Administrative Reforms Commission is discussing how civil services can be opened to the private sector. “Our problem is that the government service is cadre-based recruitment,” he added.

Students of the second batch, starting in April 2008, had a wealth of experiences to share at the interaction. All of them had undergone six to eight weeks courses between August and October on international attachment module in renowned institutions in four different foreign universities, with which the IIM-A has tied up.

The institutions included the Faculty of Economic and Social Sciences of the University of Geneva, Lyndon Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, the Georgetown Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University, and the H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management, Carnegie Mellon University.

Rathnesh, who works at Nokia, said the programme provides a good interaction between the government, public and corporate sectors. “Government and corporate sectors are coming close to each other in social and infrastructure development,” he said, adding he wanted to work in an area of public sector management.

Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Aradhana Patnaik, who is posted as a Deputy Commissioner in Jharkhand, said: “The PGP-PMP is a public policy oriented programme and it has a unique combination of theoretical concepts with practical grounding.”

“I have attended many programmes in the past but this PGP-PMP had a variety of participants and we had personal and official level interaction and I had much to learn from others who came from public and private sectors,” she added.

“It is a wonderful programme,” said Badouni, a retired colonel from the Indian Army. “I am an electrical engineer and I joined the programme as it offers vast experience on infrastructure development. Infrastrucutre is the key to future,” he added.

“I joined the programme as I thought I should learn about other sectors and therefore for the international experience I went to Georgetown Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University,” said a doctor, Mohit Kumar, who specialises in anaesthesia.

This time the batch had 67 percent of its participants having a public service background, while the rest were drawn from public sector undertakings (PSUs), banks, NGOs, and the private sector. Their average work experience was 12 plus years and the average age of the participants was 33 years.

However, this one-year programme costs a hefty Rs.1.2 million. Some of them told IANS that they had to pay the money from their own pocket. Yet all of them described the satisfaction they derived from this programme. With about 800 contact hours of engagement, the programme being offered in five modules was indeed a brainstorming one.

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