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BHARAT- A Vibrant Democratic Republic

We are celebrating the 72nd Republic day on 26 January 2021, the day on which India became an independent republic with a democratic system of governance. On this day when the Constitution of India, came into effect in year 1950 after being adopted by the Constituent Assembly on November 26, 1949, we are compelled to express our gratitude to the framers of the Indian Constitution. Undoubtedly, they were men of great foresight and wisdom as they have drafted this unique document which has withstood the test of time. Over the last seven decades it has seen many ups and downs and emerged successful as the largest democracy of the world.

Every country wants to be known as a ‘Democracy’, for example even a totalitarian State like China prefers calling itself a Democracy but in the real sense only few nations qualify for democracy and India is one of them. A true democracy must allow free and fair competition. Our Constitution provides for impartial elections, sine qua non for a democratic setup. A free and vibrant Media is a hallmark for democracy. Except for a brief period of EMERGENCY in India during 1975 which was a temporary aberration, our constitution fortunately has survived all the onslaughts to only emerge stronger than before.

The Indian Constitution establishes the primacy of the legislature, executive and the judiciary in their respective domain with checks and balances. The Legislature is there to point out the mistakes and abuse of power by the Executive and put effective checks. On the pattern of American Constitution; the Superior Courts have the power of Judicial Review of executive actions. The drafters could comprehend the dangers of curtailing the liberties of the citizens by the executive if its powers were not controlled by the Judiciary. Hence, our founding fathers saw the role of Supreme Court of India very significant whenever the legislature or executive exceeded their powers.

In 1970’s the nation saw the pillars of the federal structure quiver when the Government deliberately made certain amendments in the Document which were subsequently turned down by the Supreme Court as unconstitutional. In the famous Keshavananda Bharati case, the apex court pronounced that though the legislation has every power to amend the constitution, but the government in no circumstances can change the Basic Structure of the Indian constitution. The then government strongly reacted to the landmark judgement and superseded the three most senior judges to appoint the dissenting judge as the Chief Justice of India. This paved the way to the concept of ‘committed judiciary in India’ and also confrontations between executive and judiciary. This indeed posted a great threat to the Basic Structure and the smooth functioning of the Democracy.

Though the Constitution makers had a vision of keeping the federal yet unitary nature of India while crafting this document but the center and state relations have not been cordial from the onset. The Constitution of India under Article 356 provided for the suspension of State Assembly by imposing Presidents Rule which was to be exercised by the Center only in special situations of a breakdown in the Constitutional machinery of any state. Unfortunately, this provision was abused and misused by the Center yet again during the then government in exercise of their power. Many a times various state governments were dismissed until the Supreme Court finally put some restrictions on the exercise of the said provision in the famous case of S. R. Bomai vs. Union of India.

The aspiring new India chasing the dreams of her craftsmen will have to make constant efforts to strengthen the existing pillars on which the nation stands tall and does not let it wither away with the systematic subversion by the governments elected with populous majority. Let ‘We’ the people of India come and join its representatives to work at all levels in order to redefine ‘Democratic Republic, India’. The challenges are manifold but the young India will channelize all its energy into Nation Building with small initiatives, be it digital India, startup India or Atmanirbhar Bharat.

We stand United with a mission to live up to the vision of what constitutes Bharat, a union of state.

Really is it True- Do we all Think Alike?

I was reading in the morning paper about how a game of Ludo saved our lives during the lockdown. The collective power of distracting ourselves from the pandemic glued people the world over to gaming. Obsession and now so much time on hand, made some people go back to board games, especially Ludo- the traditional four players’ game. Families hurdled up together for some fun time, given when they were free from their work from home schedule to enjoy each other’s company. Some took to phones and started playing ludo with friends and family near and far to play ludo on the app. It was all good fun and in essence, has taught many of us the virtues of living life. Pandemic was not only an eye-opener for so many of us who were living life in the fast lane but was also an insightful year to reflect and relax in life- we only get it once.

Ludo as explained by Wikipedia is a strategy board game for two to four players, in which the players race their four tokens from start to finish according to the rolls of a single die. Two, three, or four can play, without partnerships.

This game brings out the best in us- to win and go home and be happy or the worst- to keep killing other players’ tokens so that you can overtake them and win. A lot of animosities also stems up from those who are not interested in being killed and sent back to wait for a roll of dice to make a six and be released all over again in the game. This game is not for the weak-hearted, as only the most meticulous, careful, and fully aware player will make it first to home without a scratch.

Like others, I always begin the game hoping for my dice to show six so that my tokens will freely roam around the square of the board, only to occasionally meet threats from other players, who would be determined not to let my token take a peaceful walk by home, unscratched.

So, while I am rejoicing for my tokens and at the same time worried that other players may not harm me, I wonder, do we all play fair? Do we all think alike? Is it true that like-minded people think alike?

Thinking is a mental process of experiencing present events and making critical judgments from past experiences. Thinking is used almost every second of our living and most of the time engage in thoughtfulness without even thinking. It is like a habit you flow into without you realizing you are doing it (nail-biting for example).

We all display similar yet unique styles of thinking even though we can be characterized into personality types, yet something in our nature makes us individually unique. To explain how we think, I will bring in Sternberg’s ideology of thinking styles.

Sternberg (1988,1997) proposed his own theory of thinking styles, a theory he named the “theory of mental self-government”. He used the metaphor of mental self-government to portray how the human mind works. His theory postulated 13 different mental styles to manage our daily activities. To make it simpler, I would like to explain different mental styles with examples of players on a Ludo game and their strategies to win.

A legislative player will use his own method, not follow others, and look for winning moments but creatively.

An executive player will follow only a structured method and hopefully will not cheat.

A judicial player will evaluate other players’ moves and constantly comment in the game at them.

A monarchic player will spend all his energy on one token to safety than putting all his tokens in the game.

A hierarchic player will put all his tokens out in the game and make the most calculative moves to save his tokens.

An oligarchic player will be in a hurry to win and will move without looking in the game.

An anarchic player will go all out to win, unlike an executive, unlikely to see risk assessment of other players moves.

A global player may look like a loser in the beginning but will keep looking at the bigger picture than a quick win.

A local player will keep thinking, time-consuming player of the game, and take small steps.

An internal player is someone only playing for himself even if it is a group game, no partnership, no mercy to others.

External player unlike internal player is playing with everyone, will let others go at times than cutting their chance and putting them back in the box. He likes partnership.

A liberal player will keep changing his own strategies to surprise other players with unpredictable moves in the game.

Conservative player will be the predictable player of the game, everyone will know his moves even before he moves his tokens.

We like the players in Ludo have different thinking styles which we display in different scenarios when thinking critically and working through problem-solving. To make effective decisions, most of us jump from one thinking style to another, maybe from personal to professional concerns of decision making.

There is no one reason to explain this variation, but yes, some generalizations can be as to how skilled we are, varied past experiences, the seriousness of problem-solving, time at hand, and of course our temperament influences the way we think and from that thinking behave.

To conclude, thinking influences all facets of our life even when we are mindlessly doing something, say as simple as a board game. Interestingly, even if everyone knows how to play ludo, they will always play it differently than the last time; just like our thinking styles alike- yet different.

Impact of Personality and Behavioral Styles During Difficult Negotiations- Amitabh Mukherji MA PSY 2019-2021

 

This article is a small effort to help one understand the science and art of negotiation and manage the negotiation processes. It suggests few insights of the same.

Negotiation is all about trading or in simpler terms, it is nothing but a type of deal one does while carrying out businesses. It is distinctive from other forms of decision-making. “In negotiation there is an explicit trade: I get some of what I want and you get some of what you want” (Kennedy 1994: 3). There is no negotiation in voids since negotiations conclude in decision-making. We must however seek to resolve matters by various means, including submission of others.

One exhibits traits, which makes us understand the personality. These traits incline a person to respond in certain ways. If one’s personality is stable enough then it could produce predictable responses to different negotiating situations during the dealings one carries out with different personalities. In turn it helps one to secure better negotiated outcomes.

According to the research by Rubin and Brown, two variables were identified to determine personality styles influencing negotiation skills. The two variables are: Interpersonal Orientation (IO), also known as social ability and social awareness. If one is high on IO then one is responsive to one’s relationship with the other negotiator and low IO leads to non-responsiveness. The other is, Motivational Orientation (MO), means one’s nature is competitive or co-operative. These variables thus give rise to Aggressive and Submissive personality styles.

There is always a likelihood of coming across difficult negotiators in different walks of our life. They may or may not agree with us and may seem less than enthusiastic. Because of certain behavioral traits, they could be labeled as mean, aggressive and lacking in manners.

So the question is how one should deal with such complicated negotiators? One may want to negotiate but the other person may not want to! Their version of a solution implies that either one gives in and provide them what they demand or end it there.

What we need to understand is that their mindset regarding negotiation is different. They adopt such aggressive behavior(s) while negotiating, possibly because in the past they got what they demanded and they confuse aggression with toughness, which in actuality is different.

Need of the hour then is, to sever the connection of the other negotiator’s stances of intimidation and winning. For that one needs to grab the attention, choose the same style of negotiation or a contrasting style and assert unambiguously that the other negotiator will not resort to coercion or bullying but will deal either through merit of the case or through trading.

At-times matching style could be risky as it can easily get lost amidst the haze of threats and insults. The main purpose of it is to create an impression that one does not possesses a submissive personality style and it also leaves open an alternative settlement route. Contrasting style could also be risky since being possibly read by the difficult negotiators as one being submissive.

One can adopt the following during negotiations:

  • Quiet and soft conversations.
  • Displaying warmth.
  • Unhurried discussions.
  • Do not hear; but listen.
  • Empathetic attitude.
  • Understand non-verbal cues.
  • Non-interference and patience during interruptions.
  • Non-responsiveness, if there is swearing by the other negotiator.
  • Non-argumentative, if there are personal attacks.
  • Ignoring threats.
  • Be non-defensive against ascribed motives.
  • No acrimonious action.
  • Positive responses, if there is overt demonstration of aggressiveness and deviousness from the other negotiator.
  • Display of humility along with firmness.
  • Affirmativeness to be displayed upon arriving at an agreeable solution based upon merits of the case and trading.

Adoption of the above effectively renders an assertive message of; one’s toughness during negotiations, that is based on the rationale; that unless one acquires something, the other will obtain absolutely nothing.

It can be well concluded that negotiations are a fundamental element in our social lives. One knowingly or unknowingly, always negotiates for resources and attention. Recent studies have brought out that Negotiation is both an art and science. Cognitive biases (leading to deviation from judgmental rationales), personality and behavioral styles, affect negotiations. Thus a little psychology backed science added with conversational arts can deliver success during difficult negotiations.

“Everything is negotiable. Whether or not the negotiation is easy is another thing.” Carrie Fisher

AMITABH MUKERJI- A Defence Officer who is also pursuing Masters in Psychology from IILM University..
Apart from being a Science Graduate, he has certifications and diplomas in Defence Management (Strategic Studies) and Cyber Law and is a qualified Assessor for selecting candidates for Defence Services.

Fundraising Spree on for Indian Banks

Profitability and NPA are the two extremes that need to be balanced for banks. Since a long Indian banking sector is on a continuous fight to draw a balance between them. Recently the Central Bank decided to take control over NPAs with a huge capital infusion into the banking sector. But the outbreak of COVID-19 derailed all efforts and the problems of NPAs have been resurfaced and touched the new height which seems to be very difficult for the Indian economy to stand with.

Stress in the Banking Sector

The Indian banking sector is reeling under stress for a long time. Indian banks have been tested over the past few years after the RBI forced them to review their assets under strict criteria that eventually resulted a surge in bad loans. To add their woes, borrowings have also slowed due to lockdown. These stresses are more apparent in state-run banks than in the private sector.

Reason for Stress

According to a few economists, the primary cause of this situation that has slammed all banks are the fall of IL&FS in October 2018 and the ongoing pandemic. India is expected to fall into a recession this fiscal year due to COVID, which has affected over 2.6 million people and caused 70000+ death in the country. It is the most discussed and worrisome topic in the Indian economical circle that there are chances of getting caught in the recession since 1979.

According to RBI, the ratio of non-performing assets total advances could soar to over 12.5% by March 2021 from 8.5% as of end-March this year, prompting the country’s central bank to push banks to raise capital, which now totals over 1 trillion rupees ($13.4billion). Additionally, the Financial Stability Report (FSR), noted the NPA ratio could jump as a high level as 14.7% in the event of severe stress.

Fundraising a Way out

RBI Governor advised all banks to improve their governance and sharpen risk management skills. Banks need to raise capital on an anticipatory basis instead of waiting for an adverse situation. It is necessary for both public and private sector banks to build up adequate capital buffers.

As a result, financial institutions are on a fundraising spree via debt instruments and equity offerings. The latest bank to join the fundraising spree is Axis bank which on said had raised 100 billion rupees by issuing shares to Qualified Institutional Buyers for INR 420.10. Other financial institutions, mortgage lenders, HDFC also closed a deal to raise INR 140 billion via various instruments. At the same time, the largest private bank of India, ICICI bank also wishes to raise INR 150 billion. Later State Bank of India, India’s largest lender also joined the league and announced to raise INR 250 billion to maintain its capital requirement. Not only banks but similar signals are also been sensed from Non-Banking Financial Companies which might have to raise money. In total, it is approximately $13 billion could raise to tackle the NPA challenge.

Governance

At present, Indian banks are in dyeing need for reforms. The Bank exposure to stressed sectors, loan-loss cover, and pre-provision earnings determine the urgency of their capital requirements, which is more pronounced for state banks. Recently 5 members committee has been formed by RBI under the Chairmanship of former CEO of ICICI bank, Mr. KV Kamath. This committee makes recommendations on the required parameters to be factored into the resolution plans. A resolution to the problem of the corporate debtor insolvency and its consequent inability to pay off debts. The committee will submit its recommendation to the RBI. The central bank will then notify the same along with modification including the restructuring of loans if any in 30 days.

Support from Government

Over the last five years until March 2020, India had pumped around 3 trillion rupees into banks to remain capital requirements. In the future, we may expect more infusion of cash from the government eventually to support the banks and consequently to save the economy.

 

Aditya Verma

PGDM 2020-22

IILM, Greater Noida

Dr. Kumar Saurabh

Asst. Prof-Finance

IILM Graduate School of Management, Greater Noida

What is Toxic Empathy and How to Emotionally Protect Yourself?

What is Toxic Empathy?

Toxic empathy is when a person over-identifies with someone emotions, feelings and takes them on as their own personal. Although, if the other individual’s anxiety and stress keep you from your current tasks and responsibilities, it is called toxic empathy.

Toxic empathy is when you do not just replicate and reflect another person’s emotions or feelings, you also experience and consume them. Consuming someone else’s problems can cause you to become equally overwhelmed or even more so. When you replicate another person’s emotions as your own, you make them your emotions too even though you are only empathizing or putting yourself in that person’s shoes.

People who are overly-empathetic or hyper-empathetic may gradually lose their own wants, needs as the feeling when overshadowed by another person’s emotions. These people experience others’ emotions to an extent where they lose themselves and feel the pain or negativity and in some cases positivity of another person. This diverts them from their own path and their life and onto someone else’s.

Regular over empathizing can lead to a reduced capacity of making one’s own decisions as per their best interest. They may also experience draining feelings physically and mentally since they draw away from their own feelings. People who give greater importance to others’ lives and needs above their own experience general anxiety and even mild depression at times. They don’t think of themselves often and are fully consumed by others’ sentiments they report feelings of emptiness and meaninglessness. They mostly look at situations from another person’s perspective rather than their own.

Some signs you may be experiencing toxic empathy are:

  1. Pitying others’ situations often and use it as a justification if they are mean and unpleasant towards you.
  2. Giving in to others’ demands easily and find it hard to say no or refuse.
  3. Unintentionally physically replicate another person’s stress i.e, feeling like you have a knot in your stomach, clammy hands, etc.
  4. Emotionally mirroring another individual’s pain and feeling persistent emotions of sadness and suffering for a prolonged period of time.
  5. Feeling exhausted physically and psychologically after interacting with people.
  6. Being unable to complete or fulfil your own responsibilities because you feel overwhelmed by your feelings.

Managing toxic empathy

Emotional Hijacking

Emotional hijacking is when another person’s thoughts and feelings have control over your emotions and feelings. People who have a high empathic quotient and are prone to toxic empathy may experience emotional hijacking during a process like venting. They can absorb the other’s frustrations and replicate them. To prevent this, you must observe what emotions you feel when someone is expressing their feeling to you and remain calm, relax. Composing yourself later on and relaxing gradually will allow you to release the other individual’s emotions and empathise in a healthy way.

Healthy relationships

In mutually healthy relations both parties’ emotional needs are given proportionate importance. It uses the give and take method where both parties act as listeners and speakers as well. Every healthy relationship has a well defined boundary where everyone’s needs are met and an equal amount of support is given to both individuals. Communication is key and is necessary in order to fully express and let go or relive yourself from some of the negative emotions you are feeling. Communication in a healthy relationship would make you feel heard, lighten your mood and deepen your connection with the other individual.

In a healthy relationship, boundaries are extremely important since they help you distinguish between your own needs and the other person’s needs which allows you to shield yourself from toxic empathy.

Psychologists near me

If you feel that you are always overwhelmed with your emotions, listening to others’ problems causes you to stress, seek the help of distinguished Psychologists at IILM would be happy to guide and counsel you. Our faculties can help you understand the causes and help you balance empathizing with others, managing your own emotions and forming healthy relationships.

Please feel free to write to us at megha.pushkarna@iilm.edu The distinguished Psychologists at IILM would be happy to guide and counsel you.

 

 

 

ANANYA PANDEY FROM BA YR II Batch 2019

Learning Rebooted in Higher Management Education

By Winnie Ranjan who is a Second Year PGDM Student at IILM Lodhi Road

Higher management education has witnessed a radical transformation in a matter of months due to the COVID 19 pandemic. Technology in the education sector has become an integral part of the new normal. This paradigm shift in the education sector has boosted the overall learning process. As a management student, online learning has made me wonder about the different trends and opportunities evolving in the field of education in the coming years.

As a response to the COVID 19 challenge, colleges and universities have revised the courses and subjects offered to students in order to facilitate learning that aligns with the skills required in the upcoming job market. The digital market space has taken another sharp upward turn and has evolved faster than ever before with new powerful sectors leading the pack. Different fields like data analytics, remote management, digital business, technology advancements among others have created even more demand for jobs. IILM has started offering subjects which foster alignment with the required skill sets in the job market.

In the current business world where everything is heavily dependent on data, analytics has become one of the powerful tools for the success of any organization. Considering this scenario, IILM has started offering different analytics-based courses to its students like Marketing Analytics, HR Analytics, Business Analytics, etc. which are in high demand in today’s job market. We also have a course on Python as technology is rapidly changing and learning programming has become crucial for future managers, so that they can provide innovative solutions for problems in the business world.

The lockdown has highlighted the importance of  E-commerce due to the changing behaviour of the consumers. It is very important for management students to learn about E-Commerce for both job opportunities as well as self-employment. Industry experts are delivering guest lectures so that students can gain insights into the practical application and challenges of e-commerce in various sectors.

IILM revamped its courses based on the current scenario and future forecast. It is also offering a course in Logistics Management. Apart from the digitalization in this industry, there has been a lot of changes in the global logistics management and supply chains due to the disruptions brought by the pandemic. Understanding these interactions is very important for managers to manage inventories and plan ahead.

There has always been a concern with remote learning with respect to imbibing social skills. Management students as “future managers” need to work in teams and manage people effectively. To help students incorporate these skill sets, IILM has offered a course on “Managing Virtual Teams” where international faculty have collaborated with IILM faculty members. This has enabled the mutual benefits of global learning for both students and faculty.

It is very important in these high times to interact and engage with students so that they don’t feel isolated and miss out on the personal touch. Business schools are planning sessions where they engage the students through different fun activities, games and other medium. At IILM, we have an interesting career course on “Management Through Movies” where students participate enthusiastically and discuss different movies keeping in mind the management approach.

The past few months have led to the digitization of education which has given rise to many online education platforms like Coursera, Udemy, Byju, etc., which in turn has widened the scope of learning for both students and professionals. In fact, many business schools have made it compulsory for students to take some courses on these platforms so that they can upscale their existing skills. IILM also took a similar kind of initiative and has tied-up with Coursera for providing free certificate courses to its students. Each student has her own strengths, weaknesses, interest area and pace of learning so based on choosing their own courses from a wide variety offered on this platform has been very helpful in providing personalized learning to students.

Looking into the future:

Looking ahead to a time when colleges and universities would re-open, there are higher chances of integration of analytics and technology into the course curriculum. As management students, it is important that we think through and analyze what is happening around us and how we can create opportunities for ourselves and harness these changes to the best for our learnings for a better future.

To learn more about how the new courses at IILM, please visit us at www.iilm.edu

Covid-19 –Political Obligation and Government Compulsion

The current state of epidemic not only urges the government to take harsh measures but also the people to cooperate with it for their own survival. Letting go of their right of self-preservation the people need to understand that the measures are for their own good.

Hobbes had once stated “Out of it, any man may rightly spoil or kill each other, in it none but one. Out of it we are protected by our own forces, in it by the power of all. Out of it no man is sure of the fruits of his labour, in it all men are. Lastly out of it, there is a domination of passions, war, fear, poverty, slovenliness, solitude, barbarism, ignorance, and cruelty, in it, the domination of reason, peace, security, riches, decency, society, elegance, sciences and benevolence”. This is a situation which seems to persist in India and around the world currently. When the people are anxious and cautious at the same time. When the citizens are looking towards the sovereign for the answers to their questions and support for their well being. There is peace and havoc; there is ignorance and awareness that simultaneously persists.

Here the measures of a complete lockdown by the Indian Government at the early stages has been up lauded across the world. Yet the Indian populace even in this state seems to be defying the government orders as a part of their leisure routine not understanding the severity of the situation. The recent incident of the conglomeration of crowds at bus stations is sheer ignorance on their part against the world wide pandemic.

The government of India needs to be praised that they have been working on meeting up with all the flaws in the scenario and bringing in satisfactory measures in the social, economic and health scenario. It is now up to the people of India to understand the severity of the situation and heed to their obligation towards the state which is abiding by the dictates of the state.

Government and Public Policy

 

The debate on the role of government in an era of automation, internet, globalization and climate change has been going on for long. Historically, the government’s chief duty has been to provide security and public services to its citizens while levying taxes and collecting revenues in return. Discussions have been galore on whether governments will be largely redundant in an interlinked world where technology and supra national authorities will become the major players. Paradoxically with the immense growth in technological progress, the regulatory role of the government has come into focus as well as the view that the government should act as a facilitator of advancement.  The Antitrust cases against Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon bring to light this tension between the government as a defender of privacy and rights of its citizens while the claim of these companies is that they have ‘spurred innovations’. With the onset of the corona virus pandemic, the lens through which governmental action can be examined has been further widened.

Covid 19 has resoundingly brought out the importance of health and economic policies to the forefront which have comprehensively demonstrated the importance of government and its public policy. The classic definition of public policy by Thomas Dye aptly fits the current thought process- ‘public policy is whatever governments choose to do or not to do.’ Sweden is an interesting case where the government chose what ‘not to do’ by adopting a comparatively lax approach to enforcing social distancing by legal measures instead it relied on societal norms. Governments may regulate behaviour, organize bureaucracies, distribute benefits or extract taxes- or all of these things at once. The government through its monetary and fiscal policies is often seen stimulating a depressed economy like doling out stimulus packages in India, EU and USA, curbing inflation which may otherwise make food unaffordable to the common wo-man (Refer to the RBI governor’s recent statements which point to this policy goal[1]), giving assistance to those who are unemployed (case of MNREGA) or opening markets for growth and jobs (such as Indian agricultural sector reforms).

Governments are expected to impose lockdowns to curb the spread of an epidemic but also ease into ‘un-lockdown’ when economies start going into recession.  For example, the pandemic response by the New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s government which has been universally praised for its preventive actions and levels of preparedness. Thus, policy-making is an intricate process, shaped and prompted by multitude of factors, actors and their interests. The defining characteristic of this process though is ‘complexity’.

This complex process of public policy making involves primarily the government along with the multitude of government bodies, organizations, lobbies, businesses, contractors and ordinary citizens. It crisscrosses almost every aspect of modern day life- banking and financial transactions, education and healthcare, transportation and infrastructure, trade and foreign policy, social and humanitarian policy, environmental and regulatory policy. One of the immediate and decisive responses of governments in Germany, France, Denmark and Sweden to the covid crisis, for example, has been in providing a direct wage supplement to employers just like wage subsidies on the condition that they not lay off workers Government policies have become absolutely crucial to curbing and coping up with the pandemic but also in solving the ongoing abyss that economies currently find themselves in. In response to the call by businesses and industry leaders for more government action, sweeping interventions and well targeted relief measures, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron have proposed a €500 later €750 billion European Fiscal Response, on top of what countries already planned to do nationally.

Recognizing this growing relevance of public policy, IILM offers a variety of public policy courses as part of its post graduate programs. These courses recognize the complexity of today’s world and the ramifications of public policy on businesses, economy and society. Students can choose from various electives in public policy like political economy, international trade policy, international institutions, foreign policy, environmental policy among others along with lectures and interactions with experts on various facets of public policy making in India. The role of government institutions, stimulus packages, sectoral reforms and defense upgradation cannot be overemphasized in overcoming the challenges that we face today. Governmental policies will largely determine the course ahead in terms of recovery from the pandemic and re-energizing the economy and people.

To know more about public policy response to the COVID 19 pandemic and public policy courses at IILM, please write to me at Bidisha.banerji@iilm.edu

[1] https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/economy/policy/with-its-eyes-on-inflation-rbi-may-halt-rate-cuts-for-the-foreseeable-future/articleshow/77666027.cms

Python for Data Science and Visualization

Python is the most widely used high-level programming language. It is the simplicity that makes Python a favorite language with coders and data scientists. Non-programmers feel uncomfortable when they are asked to work on a programming language.

But I have a justification – do you know simple mathematical and logical functions of MS-Excel. If yes, you can easily handle programming language like Python.

Before talking about Python let us know what is Data Analytics? Today, Data science is an attractive career option. Analytics is a blend of Big Data, statistical methods, and management decision making. Businesses are generating large amount of data as they are online now more than ever. Data comes in the form of text (opinion), number (satisfaction rating), voice messages, and videos (product reviews after delivery). To be ahead of competitors, businesses wish to analyze the data, make meaningful outcomes to take informed decisions.

Let me introduce you with Python – Python is a production-ready computer programming language, this language is used in multiple operations. One of its tasks is data analytics but it is not specifically meant for data analysis. It’s an open-source language so you don’t need to pay anything, just download Anaconda and start working on Python.  Python facilitates libraries, online communities, and a limited number of packages that are easy to use. Its best feature is the visualization of data. After using various software to make an eye candy chart I think, my search ends at Python. Yes, it’s a command-based programming language where you have to memorize commands or make a note to use them at the right time. Where Python is a winner or loser? It is the non-availability of GUI or Graphical User Interface like MS-Excel, SPSS, or SAS. But at the same time, it is a boon too. GIU limits the creativity of the user; the user will get only the features that are available with the software. But with Python, you can add features. Two examples of the charts are below-

At present, the software available in the market for the statistical calculations like R, MS-Excel, SPSS, SAS etc. All of them have some challenges and some benefits. If you will check vacancies in the top-paying jobs you will find

Today, there is varied software available in the market for statistical calculations like R, MS-Excel, SPSS, SAS, etc. All of them have some challenges and benefits. If you look at top-paying jobs you will find that companies are running behind Python. Let’s see how the other statistical packages fare in the race.

  • R – R and Python are the most widely used statistical software in the field of data analytics. The reason for their popularity is they are open-source; one can download them, learn about them, and start working without paying a single penny. However, which one is better, and why? Let’s see –
  • R is an academic tool specifically designed for statistical research only.
  • For learners, Python and R are easy at the beginners’ level but when it comes to advanced functions, R becomes complex and is difficult to develop expertise. When you will shift from GUI based software to R or Python, initially it will seem daunting due to typing commands and no usage of mouse.
  • R loses the race when it comes to visualization. Finding the right package for visualization can be a tedious task for a beginner as there are 2000 different packages. In Python, there are few packages like Seaborn, Bokeh, and Pygal that are easy to remember by a practitioner.
  • MS-Excel – MS-Excel is software in the MS-office package developed by Microsoft Corporation. If you are known about the formulas in excel, Python will be easy for you. Because you can use mathematical, logical, and other operators while writing commands.

But still, Python wins the race.

  • MS-Excel is paid but Python is free.
  • MS-Excel is very easy to learn, but cannot handle data faster and easier.
  • MS-Excel is not capable of advanced statistics, and machine learning.
  • Detecting and fixing errors is a challenge in MS-Excel.
  • In the case of advanced visualization, if you are stuck in MS-Excel there are no solutions available. Options of a community (a group of people online that help each other in solving issues) and libraries (data set on which you can practice and improve your problem-solving skills) help is not available for MS-Excel.
  • SPSS – SPSS is a statistical package for the Social Sciences and is a popular product of IBM. It’s popularity is due to its GUI which is similar to MS-Excel.
  • For learners purchasing SPSS is a costly affair, it disappoints aspirants who wish to learn data analysis using the software.
  • Some other features that are lacking are non-availability of online communities and libraries.
  • SPSS becomes slower when you are handling an extremely large data set.
  • SAS – Statistical Analysis System or SAS developed by SAS Institute at North Carolina University. It is popular because it addresses the problems that MS-Excel and SPSS cannot handle. Due to its high safety ratings, banking and insurance companies prefer to use it. But, it is expensive software priced in India at INR 20 Lacs.

Of course, Python has not captured the complete analytics market but it is getting consideration. The reason is that we see mushrooming of startups in the area of web designing, e-commerce business, leading to increase in data usage, and its open-source availability. Students looking for a career in Data Science must keep Python in your quiver. It will be a useful tools that can enhance your job and career prospects.

For more information on Python-related readings follow my blogs on IILM Blog site https://blog.iilm.edu or write to me at ashutosh.singh@iilm.edu.

Will India Emerge as the Global Production Hub?

Will India Emerge as the Global Production Hub?

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic that originated in Wuhan, China, the world is facing a major existential crisis. This virus has led to massive destruction and deterioration of resources across the world. It poses the biggest threat to humanity as the number of deaths is increasing at a rapid pace each day. The Governments of all countries are trying to cope with this crisis in the best possible way.

Shifting of Manufacturing Base

Amid all this, there has been a shift in the mindset where big companies or Multinational Corporations (MNCs) are planning to de-risk their supply chain and shift their manufacturing bases from China. The major reason for this is the massive disruption caused to businesses due to actions taken in the wake of the outbreak. Globally, business houses are considering India as an ideal place for shifting their manufacturing setups. They are exploring the option of relocating their supply chains to diversify their business operations. This could be seen in the case of the tech giant Apple which is planning to shift one-fifth of its production capacity from China to India.

Moving out of China

Even though, India ranks at number 63 on the global index on the ease of doing business and China stands at 31 which is way ahead of India. But still, the Governments of various countries are expressly promoting the idea and encouraging a production shift by including it in their economic packages. They are actively assisting firms that are taking action to move their manufacturing units to other countries. For instance, Japan is ready to spend a hefty amount of around USD 2 Billion to support its firms for changing their locations from China to other countries or Japan itself. Also, as the President of the US has explicitly blamed China for this pandemic and global suffering, so the other countries are also unanimously supporting this view.

India a Favorable Alternative

India is being considered as a favorable alternative to China, and the Indian Government is planning on measures that could be taken to attract foreign investment. For the purpose, a committee of bureaucrats and joint secretaries of various ministries and departments has been set up. The Government had announced various schemes in March 2020 which are inclined to give incentives for boosting manufacturing setup in India. The propaganda is to reap the greatest benefits during this time due to this shift in mindset where India is becoming an upcoming choice for most multinational organizations. Because of its market size and being a potential hub for exports, along with quality personnel and talent India has a golden opportunity to take advantage of such manufacturing migration.

Diversify

There has been a huge dependence by developed countries like Japan, the US, South Korea, etc. in China because of the availability of cheap labor. There is a popular saying that “Never put all your eggs in one basket.” So, these countries are rethinking and reapplying this strategy and are now expected to help India in the forthcoming years. There are almost 1000 foreign firms that are considering India as a potential destination for their manufacturing setups. Most of these firms deal with mobiles, medical devices, electronics, and textiles.

Relaxing the Norms

If India is going to substitute China as a manufacturing hub in the coming years, then major reforms in the structure need to be implemented and relaxing the norms and regulations for carrying out businesses with ease. The problem that India faces is the lengthy rules and red tape that deters potential investors from grabbing opportunities and taking actions for establishing production hubs. It is a time-consuming process for getting licenses and approvals for starting a business in India. Therefore, there is a need for certain relaxations in these proceedings so that there is a fair chance of attracting business opportunities to the entrants and has the scope to expand and diversify existing businesses. This would boost companies in making their businesses flourish.

India, having foreseen this golden opportunity needs to move faster in this direction and must improve the infrastructure that is a pre-requisite for any upcoming development. The authorities can take pro-active and prompt decisions so that India does not lose this fair chance as it is not alone in this race to attract investment. Many other countries are eagerly looking to grab this opportunity. It is the right time for India to sustain and populate its “Make in India” scheme and become self-reliant or “Atmanirbhar” as proposed by our Honorable Prime Minister. This is the time to join hands and fighting this pandemic to come out of it stronger and prosperous. This crisis has pushed the economy by many years but this single chance of reviving it by becoming the global manufacturing hub ought to be grabbed with both hands.

What are your suggestions for India to capitalize on this golden opportunity to attract investment from global MNCs? Do comment.

Deeksha Garg

PGDM Student

Dr. Kumar Saurabh

IILM-GSM