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D.K. GHOSH

Higher Education Management Expert

Author of Four pioneering Books

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Snapshot

My decades of professional career relate entirely to the cause of higher education management. As part of the same, I wrote on various issues of higher education management which I felt were necessary to focus for benefit of the system. They  were published from time to time in the form of four pioneering books as also over thirty Articles on different topics of higher education, published mostly in the Higher Education Journal of the Association of Indian Universities, New Delhi.

 

I am deeply passionate for a responsive, efficient and sensitive higher education management for that can make a difference in the overall purposes of the system i.e. teaching and learning environment which would then impact positively on millions of young minds and the future of the nation.  To this end, I incessantly made efforts to contribute both in my capacity as an Academic Administrator and Manager as also as an Author while heading the service system ie the Administration in universities and IITs.

However, there is much to be done in this direction for students and teachers so that the precious knowledge factory flourishes. When that is done to the real needs of the system, people and nations will immensely benefit.

 

It has always been a matter of great pleasure and opportunity to have spent over four decades in universities and IITs interacting with teachers and students. That is why I successfully enjoyed  while heading the service system in these institutions in various capacities. The real opportunity and challenge was to sensitively interact with teachers and students and to understand their needs to ensure that everything is in place for them for their teaching and learning activities.

Broad Areas of Expertise

  • Project Development including DPR and Implementation thereof.

  •  Institution Building- A to Z

  • Financing of Higher Education and Fund Management.

  • Drafting of Acts, Statutes, and Ordinances with credible track record.

  • Administrative Skill and Strategies - Upgrading Organisational Effectiveness  and for  Achieving Objectives

  • Compliance Requirements::Understanding, Validating, and Implementing Regulatory Framework mandates, as a Team.

  • Risk Management in Higher Education System. -A full Chapter in my latest book.

BRIEF OVERALL CANVAS

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Administrative and Managerial Roles

University System

I successively served two State Universities in undivided Madhya Pradesh. I began my journey in the University of Jabalpur (renamed RD University) right from its very inception working with the top functionary -Rector- where I gained my grassroots administrative experience digesting what it takes to build a university from the scratch.

 

Broadly, that really meant A to Z to build a new University which was both Teaching and Affiliating. Importantly, that involved from site selection and infrastructure planning for the University Campus to setting up of the administrative structure and fix nuts and bolts such as recruitments of staff and officers to create the service system and constitution of various Authorities and Bodies to form the basis for full-fledged functioning of the system in terms of the University Act, Statutes and Ordinances. For this, seniority formed the basis and collecting data, scrutinizing them and publish the same for objections by aggrieved parties. After judicially examining each objection by an independent committee, published the final list. That made the basis requiring however annual updating was necessary. That was a great learning experience to do things judicially and democratically.

 

The most crucial job to build the academic structure was to build a good Professoriate who are at the heart of the institution. For this, the University not only followed the normal mode of advertisement, but importantly consulted the top experts of the country to suggest names for being invited to accept Professorships of the University. For example, for Philosophy, Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan was consulted and he had suggested names. That speaks of the objective to find the best anywhere in the country.

 

Another basic need was planning and organizing funds which have at all times been not smooth, albeit much better and easier than now.

 

Obtaining UGC’s formal approval for the University also required a good deal of efforts including a visit by the then Chairman Dr. C.D. Deshmukh. 

 

Later, my services were required to work with the Vice-Chancellor to reorganize the India’s first University of Music and Fine Arts in MP (now in Chhattisgarh) which was successfully done securing UGC recognition and funding for projects, and taking it into a well-shaped, organized and developed University.

 

In the private sector, I served as the Founding Vice-Chancellor of   Dr. DY Patil Deemed to be University at Navi Mumbai for which I was invited to accept the position for the university was required to be organized on a sound footing in terms of UGC’s conditions. The university was devoted predominantly to Medical and Dentistry studies and research. However, later Biotechnology and Management and a few other disciplines were added to meet growing demands in these disciplines.

 

I organized the administrative and Academic structure of the university creating various governing system, namely, the Board of Governors and academic bodies like Academic Council and Departments of Studies for curriculum updating and effective teaching and research. A good culture and tradition is a must for the good future of any university.

 

Most importantly, for the new University, I developed the All-India Competitive Examination System for admission of students on all-India basis. This I did along the lines of the JEE(Advanced) system. The structure and processes I developed passed the test of legal scrutiny of the Supreme Court, where someone challenged the system of examination conducted by the university.

        IIT System

My association with the IIT system began with IITBombay since 1985 when I joined as its Registrar. That opened up new opportunities to interact with brilliant faculty members of high quality comparable with the best anywhere in the world. That opportunity was not only in IITBombay but other IITs as well. I had opportunities to work on many occasions with many of them at meetings discussing many management problems as committee members.

 

 What I in particular enjoyed was and still is the culture, commitment and objectivity. In all IITs. The precious opportunities at meetings of Board of Governors and Senate were all educating.  It was indeed rare opportunity to work closely with the outstanding Chairmen of Boards and of course distinguished Directors in IITBombay. My association with the founding Directors of IITGandhinagar and IITHyderabad were notable which I keep in my fondest memory. I had also opportunities to closely work with Directors of IITDelhi, IIT Kharagpur and IITRoorkee.

 

I served IITBombay for a record period of 16+ years in that position playing always active role in policy decisions, modernizing the Administrative machinery including devolving of powers to Academic Heads of Departments for efficient functioning of the departments. As part of Administrative Reforms, Deans each of whom had important areas to look after were also delegated autonomy for achieving efficiency.

 

I took special care to mould the serving officers to convert the administration into a smooth system to serve the needs of teachers and students breaking all possible bureaucratic rigidities and barriers to avoid delay and frustrations.

 

After I formally superannuated from IITBombay.. although, I was offered the position as Advisor, I was unable to accept for having already committed to another offer post superannuation.

 

Precisely, I have had unique opportunities to work in Universities and IITs gaining firsthand knowledge and experience of varied nature which I cherish as my possession.

Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)                              in Higher Education

Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) is now a must for universities and other Institutions like IITs. Undeniably, with ERM in place, it is established that institutions abroad have gained considerably to avert disastrous situation without which when a setback suddenly appears the university get puzzled, not knowing what to do in such situations such - as a sudden drop in the number of students leading to reduced income, faculty attrition due to poaching by rival institutions affecting academic reputation of the institution or for some management policy decisions, etc. In such a case, the institution suddenly finds itself in a puzzling point.

 

Admittedly, when ERM is in place in the institution that can always tell the Management in advance to take precaution in which case, abrupt problem would be averted. In fact, at times, advance alert from ERM team could help the institution moving ahead of rival institutions. Without ERM in place, this kind of situations will continue to be there due to the fact that higher education is in market places.

 

In view of importance of ERM. I have added a new Chapter on this in my latest book- HIGHER EDUCATION: Surviving the Era of MARKET FORCES-A Global Perspective.

Academic and other Attributes

1.    I am a postgraduate in Social Sciences and have a Professional Certificate from the Ministry of Education for Collection, Compilation, and Standardization of Higher Education Statistics of India.

 

2.    I was a Fulbright Scholar (1984) visiting a number of Universities in USA discussing and gathering information about how they were finding the growing changes leading to Resource Crunch, and its impact on the system, the Academic structure, and Governance system, in particular their Strategies to achieve Objectives and productivity.

 

 

3.    As an awardee (1991) of a Travelling Fellowship by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, London, supported by the British Council, I undertook an important study about the position of universities in UK which suffered a serious set-back due to reduction of grants by the UK government led by Margaret Thatcher, from a minimum of 6% to 44% on a selective basis and how each one was doing after six years

The study was important because what happened in UK was to follow elsewhere in the world. In fact, universities in USA had started facing the heat for they were then busy tightening their belts. Actually, I took forward the study that was originally undertaken by Prof. John Sizer, who later became the CEO of the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council. That study culminated in a book authored by me.

 

4.    I have authored four pioneering books on Higher Education, two of which are international in content and character. The four books are the following-

  • University System of India (1984)- A to Z of the Indian System, Fore worded by Dr. VS Jha, Former Vice-Chancellor, BHU and a Member of the Second Education Commission of India. This was the first book of its kind.

  • How To Generate Income in Higher Education System (1994) Fore worded by Dr. R.A. Mashelkar, the then Director-General of CSIR, New Delhi. Even this was also the first book of its kind.

  • Resource Management in Universities in UK during and after Thatcher Era. (1994). This book was Fore worded by Prof John Sizer, CEO of Scottish Higher Education Funding Council, an equivalent of UGC, and admired by the Head of Management Department of the University of Bath, UK.

 

  • HIGHER EDUCATION: Surviving the Era of MARKET FORCES-A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE (2023). This book many academics think is a timely publication for the worldwide Higher Education system to guide how to survive in the acute complexities of market forces and to flourish through a number of Initiatives, measures, and processes

In addition, I have Edited a book containing Lectures of Experts at an International Training Programme designed and coordinated by me with funding from the Commonwealth Secretariat, London. Those lectures also included two of my talks on the Resource Crunch and Resource Management of universities.

First ever Japan Collaboration and

                              Human Resource Development

 A. IITHyderabad-Japan Collaboration

1)      For the first time ever in the history of higher education of India, the Prime Ministers of India and Japan had decided for the IIT Hyderabad and Japan Collaboration under the Govt of India’s broader Indo-Japan Collaboration. Under the collaboration, the Government of Japan committed (2014) an ODA loan to develop the Campus of the newly (2008) created

IIT Hyderabad  

 

In order to take forward the project, I was appointed by the Board as the Coordinator for the Project. Under the direction of the Director, initially, a Salient Project Proposal was prepared which after thorough discussion with (1) Visiting Teams from Tokyo of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), (Agency for funding projects of the Government of Japan), (2) the authorities in the Ministry of Finance and (3) Ministry of Education, the final DPR was prepared and approved by the Union Cabinet implementation.

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Interacting with Japanese officials for this first of its kind of collaboration both for them and us was a pleasant experience that I keep in my fondest memory. I continue to be associated with the project which will shortly achieve full completion by 31st March,2024

JICA Funded Networks for Natural Disaster Management

(2) Led by IITHyderabad, a Joint Project on Information Networks for Natural Disaster Mitigation involving several Indian institutions and Laboratories and Japanese Universities, with full funding by the government of Japan was undertaken.

 

At a crucial stage of the Project when it was facing certain difficulties, I volunteered to undertake the responsibility and coordinate with the generous support of all parties. The project started making steady progress.

 The Project was signed by the Ministry of Education/IITH and JICA. Participating institutions from two sides were- two Japanese Universities-University of Tokyo and Keio University and five Indian institutions- IIT Madras, IIT Kanpur, IMD, NGRI, IIIT Hyderabad.

 

The Project was completed within the stipulated time of five years achieving the objectives which besides the funding Japanese Government, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) of Govt of India considered it an important achievement through networks for disaster management of India creating new a mile stone

 B. Human Resource Development

Funded by UNESCO and Commonwealth Secretariat, London Two Iwo International Training Programmes were conceived, designed and organized by me for which I acted as the coordinator. A number of senior University Officers from various universities in South East Asia attended the Ten-day programme at the IIT-Bombay campus.

 

The programmes were considered a great success in achieving the objectives. One observer from Commonwealth Secretariat, London called it a Total Quality Management venture.

 

In addition, I organized a number of Workshops on the New Funding Pattern(1990s) of the Government of India for IITs for which participants came from all IITs, IIMA Ahmedabad and IISc Bangalore, including some officials from the Ministry of Education who were dealing with funding issues of these institutions.

Advisory and Consulting

(1)     Was a World-Bank Consultant for a Study Report on Costs and Financing of Technical Education in India. This included, IITs, NITs, all Engineering Colleges and Polytechnics This study is part of the Official Report of World Bank,1999-2000. In 1999, there were no IIITs and IISERs

 

(2)     Was a Whole-time Advisor-Consultant with Reliance Industries Limited, for over 6 Years inter-alia for creating from the scratch the Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology (DA-IICT), a State University, at Gandhinagar (2001-02) and as Project Director for creating a similar University in Kolkata (2005). Besides everything else, I drafted the formal Acts for both the Institutes at Gandhinagar and at Kolkata which were approved by the Governments of Gujarat and West Bengal.

 

Again in 2021-22. I was invited by the Reliance Foundation to prepare a 430 page Document charting out everything from the Act and statutes to everything in the form of a System and Process for the Greenfield Institute of Eminence of the Government of India.

 

(3)     Was Consultant to IITGandhinagar to assist the founding Director to set up the administrative structure including recruitment of staff members up to the level of Registrar. Also, I assisted to create a good structure for meetings of the Board of Governors in areas such as how a good Agenda is to be prepared for efficient discussion and decisions and how Minutes to be prepared which have long term impact on the system

 

(4)     Was. Consultant to IITRoorkee appointed at the invitation of the then Chairman of the Board of Governors and Director of the Institute. I had submitted a Report to Rejuvenate the University Administration with Corporate Efficiency which was presented by me at a meeting of the Board of Governors. For this I spent ten days in each of the three months that I took to submit the report.

 

 The Board accepted the Report and appointed me to implement the recommendations in the Institute

 

(5)    Was Consultant to IITHyderabad to assist the founding Director to set up the Administration including recruitment of staff up to the level of Registrar and advised him on various administrative issues as referred to me from time to time.

 

(6)   I was a Consultant to Sir Dorabji Tata Trust for a specific project report.

 

(7)    Was Consultant to Shipping Group of Goa for preparing a Project Report to upgrade the level of Technical Education at ITI level to contribute to upgrade Skill Pool of the country.

 

(8)   Consultant to. Ed.Cil (India) of Ministry of Education for establishment of an Institute for Information Technology in Navi Mumbai(1990s), for the Government of Maharashtra.

Visiting Faculty and Lectures

1)   Was a Visiting Faculty at the SNDT Women’s University, Mumbai, for its University Management Course.

 

       2) Delivered Lectures -     

           

  • Delivered lectures at the Hongkong University of Science and Technology, Hongkong.

  • IIT Kharagpur in its Management Institute.

  • IIT Bombay at the Malviya Induction Programme of the Ministry of Education. For newly recruited teachers drawn from different parts of the country.

  • R.D. University, Jabalpur. 

  • Ravishankar University, Raipur.

ConferencesAttended, Countries Visited, and Memberships of                                                                           Bodies

     Conferences-

1)I have attended many International and National Conferences of the University

Administrators. 

 

   Countries Visited-

     

       USA, UK, Prague (Czech), France, Germany, New Zealand, Japan, China, Hongkong,                  Singapore, Bahrain, Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxemburg.

  Memberships of various bodies - 

1) Member of the Ministry of Education’s Expert Committee to convert the University of Roorkee into IIT-Roorkee.

 

2) Member, National Board of Accreditation of AICTE

 

3) Secretary, Fulbright Association of Bombay.

 

4) Life Member of the British Council’s Scholars Association.

 

5) Life Member of the Indian Institute of Administration (IIPA) New Delhi.

 

(6) Founder Vice-President of the Indian Association of University Administrators, New Delhi.

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