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How IIM Calcutta Fared in Thought Leadership in 2009-10

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How IIM Calcutta Fared in Thought Leadership in 2009-10
Convocation Speech by Ajit Balakrishnan, Chairman, Board of Governors, IIM Calcutta


Indian media and policymakers are fond of pointing to India's youthful population and the demographic dividend. Prof. Janakirman Moorthy looks beyond to the year 2050 when India will have three times more people in the 60+ age group than we have now and tries to draw some implications of this.

His paper on this phenomenon was accepted as a book chapter in The Silver Market Phenomenon Business Opportunities in an Era of Demographic Change, Edited by Florian Kohlbacher, and Cornelius Herstatt. Prof. Moorthy also contributed, Cross-National Logo Evaluation Analysis: An Individual-Level Approach, to the September 2009 issue of the international journal, Marketing Science, and an article titled, Buying behaviour of consumers for food products in an emerging economy to the British Food Journal's second issue of 2010.

Prof. Jacob Vakkayil, co-authored a chapter titled, Conflict Management and Resolution in the book, Doing Business in India, published by Routledge.

He also contributed a paper, Dynamics of Multiple Memories, Reflections from an Enquiry, to the Sage journal, Journal of Management Enquiry. I found it one of the most valuable ruminations I have read in recent years about one of the frontier challenges in the new knowledge economy. Companies try all sorts of methods to capture as organizational Memory what they learn as they go along in business: project documents are stored in databases, case studies are caused ot be written, white papers and best practice documents are created, reviewed by gate-keepers and stored. These are then used in knowledge-sharing sessions.

Yet, to new entrants all this seem like just another training session. Knowledge Management efforts in many companies lead only to disappointment. Jacob, then wonders what is the nature of Organization Memory? Is it one or is there a plurality of memories? Are organizational memories messier and more improvised than we think? Are local, relational memories more effective than global ones? Are there communities of practice with two strands, one inside the organization and the other extending beyond into other organizations? Are there tentative, nebulous memories which are more real than the grand schemes of long-term storage and retrieval?

I found these reflections on the very nature of knowledge breathtakingly inspiring and I feel it deserves to be heard beyond the confines of a Sage management journal.

And it is also a fitting book-end to my review today of the exciting intellectual effort going on at IIM Calcutta. I hope you got as much pleasure in listening to this recounting as I did in preparing this summary.


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Contributed By-
Aloke Guin,
IIM, Calcutta.

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