Jul 17, 2008

India - Mukesh may foot intl faculty salaries at IIM-B

Kalpana Pathak & Archana Mohan / Mumbai/Ahmedabad July 16, 2008, 4:15 IST
Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, Mukesh Ambani is understood to have expressed interest in footing the salary bills of international faculty at the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Bangalore.

A source said Ambani, who is on the governing board of the premier IIM, had emphasised that the institute should recruit international faculty to become world class at the institute's recent board meeting.
"The board discussed hiring international faculty but we have not yet worked out a detailed plan on this front. We will be taking a call on the issue in the next couple of months and could put a proposal in front of all board members," said a board member.
The institute could also approach the board members to raise funds for the purpose.
Last year, Mukesh Ambani, who is also an alumnus of the Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB), had sponsored a GSB and IIM-B student exchange programme under which 16 students of the institute visited Stanford on a seven-day trip.
"Sponsoring the recruitment of international faculty could be another step towards raising IIM-B's international portfolio and international research," added the source.
None of the seven IIMs has international faculty on their rolls. Last year, IIM-Ahmedabad was in talks with an international professor but the deal fell through.
For IIMs, recruiting and retaining international faculty is a challenging affair.
"Though we always welcome visiting faculty, we find that they do not want to stay on a permanent basis on campus. However, NRI faculty, who have been working with universities abroad do show interest in joining us," said a professor from IIM Calcutta. Two new NRI professors have joined IIM-C from the UK.
A major hindrance in attracting international faculty to IIMs is the salary. At any IIM, an assistant professor's monthly income is anywhere between Rs 35,000 and Rs 40,000 (it varies depending on the consultancy fee from corporate assignments). An associate professor's monthly income is Rs 40,000-45,000 and a professor's around Rs 54,000.
Conservative estimates peg a professor's salary in the US at anywhere between $4,000 (around Rs 1.8 lakh) and $5,800 (around Rs 2.61 lakh) per month. This income is over and above consultancy fees from corporate assignments.

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