Tuesday, 20 January 2015

MBA Rural Management programme with multiple specializations at IIHMR University

Dr Vivek Bhandari, Professor at IIHMR (Indian Institute of Health  Management Research) University and former Director of IRMA (Institute of Rural Management Anand), talks about the MBA Rural Management programme with multiple specializations at IIHMR University.

Dr. Vivek Bhandari  worked as a tenured professor in Amherst, Massachusetts. However, he strongly felt the urge to live in India, a country in the throes of a tectonic transition. What finally made him move back to India was the fact that he was offered the opportunity to serve as the director and professor at IRMA, when he was barely 36 years old. 

In 2008, Business Today magazine included you in its list of 'India's Top-25 Young Executives under the age of 40’. What do you have to say about your achievement?

I was very humbled by that recognition, and it meant the world to me.  In the years ahead, I will look forward to contributing in ways that allow us to address the most difficult challenges facing the country.

Could you explain the two-year MBA programme in Rural Management with multiple specializations at IIHMR University?

The primary objective of the MBA in Rural Management with multiple specializations at IIHMR university is to facilitate integrative learning in the deepest sense of the term, so that graduates are able to walk into professional roles with ease, and play a vital role both at the operational and strategic levels in their jobs. Also, this programme comes with multiple specializations, which are being designed with the “demand-side” in mind.  

Currently, students of most premier MBA programmes are largely being prepared for an operational engagement, but are not skilled at thinking strategically or holistically. For this to happen, the curriculum must strike a balance between three things:

  • Critical thinking, active engagement with multiple stakeholders, and lateral thinking that allows students to think practically and strategically.
  • Foundational managerial skills associated with development praxis, ideally for all sectors (government, civil society sector, and private sector); and more specifically, those skills relevant for the specializations that the students choose.
  • Strong fieldwork and organizational skills based on off-campus learning experiences so that once they graduate, they can hit the ground running.

 The IIHMR MBA in Rural Management will address these issues directly and also allow students to specialize in a variety of sectors within the larger domain or rural management. This will allow them to get jobs easily, and make a deeper impact in the workplace.

What are the opportunities waiting for the students studying MBA in Rural Management with multiple specializations?

As I have said above, IIHMR’s MBA in Rural Management is built around a symbiotic relationship with the “demand-side,” i.e., an organizational network that will shape the students’ learning during the course of their time at IIHMR University. Essentially, we view this relationship with these organizations are necessary for the students to get good jobs where they can contribute by walking into critical roles. As far as we are concerned, the primary objective of the MBA in RuralManagement is to place students in good jobs where they can make a lasting impact.

What is the mission of IIHMR University?
Established in 1984 in Jaipur, Indian Institute of Health Management Research has been dedicated to improvement in standards of health through better management of healthcare systems, and related programmes. In recognition of its contributions, IIHMR was formally granted university status in 2013 and is now called IIHMR University. IIHMR-U has incubated the School of Rural Management because of the inherent synergies between the domains of health and rural management. These synergies are responsible for the launch of the MBA in Rural Management with multiple specializations.