Sunday, April 06, 2014

IIM-Calcutta may open campuses in Dubai and Malaysia

The Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta (IIM-C) may explore the possibility of opening campuses on foreign shores soon. And the destinations could be Dubai and Malaysia. The proposal, which was discussed with several of the Board of Governors (BoG) members, is waiting for nod from the highest decision-making body of the institute. If a go-ahead is given, IIM-C will join the league of IIM-Indore, IMT-Ghaziabad and SP Jain Institute of Management Research (SPJIMR) that already run campuses in Dubai. IIM-Indore has recently decided to shift from Ras Al Khaimah to the commercial hub of Middle East.

"The plan is at a very nascent state. Nothing has been decided yet. But we are looking at the prospects to make our presence felt in the Middle East and also Malaysia. The major draw will be to run the executive programmes," said a senior faculty member.

He added: "The presence of IIM-C in Dubai will access the Middle East market where a great number of expats live. Many European schools have already opened shops in Dubai. Even private B-schools and universities like SPJIMR and IMT-Ghaziabad also have centres in Dubai. XLRI, too, operates a centre from the same city. IIM-Indore has opened a study centre. There is a big executive education market and since the distance and connectivity between Europe or the USA with India is far, Middle East is a better option."

Some of the IIM-C board members also feel that Indian brands have good recognition in the Dubai market. "If the project materializes, we will take baby steps in internationalizing the B-school, which is already a famous brand in India. We have a certain degree of excellence. Opening campuses on foreign shores will be a stepping stone to try and tap a larger market. The north African markets, too, are accessible in that way. The cost of education from Indian schools is competitively better than European or US B-schools too," another source pointed out.

Additional revenue generation is a motive for such move if the decision comes through. "Corporates have a huge presence in the Middle East and that will work for placements. Part of the expansion policy of the institute may include a plan to open foreign study centres," said the source.

The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) will not have to spend money for the purpose, but only give a go-ahead. "IIM-Bangalore was previously asked by the ministry to shut shop in Singapore because of non-clarity in policy. We will be much transparent before starting on the venture," said a IIM-C board member.

The institute already runs an online executive programme in business management which is an international course. "These students sometimes come to the campus for a week or more. And sometimes even our faculty visits the country and teaches them in Dubai or Sharjah. Some students are also from Oman. It's a certificate programme and not a diploma course," informed a source.

IIM-C is not eyeing Singapore because it is already packed with global B-schools. "Earlier, representatives from the Malaysian government had come to us and invited IIM-C to open a campus at the knowledge village which they were planning to set up. We had then turned down the proposal due to lack of faculty members. Now we have more teachers and hence are ready to expand our presence globally," added the source.

Source: The Times of India, April 6, 2014

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