Posted by: Alison Damast on August 30, 2011
It comes as no surprise that the majority of India’s top management schools are the government-run Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs). But which of the elite IIMs is the best? For most of the last decade, it has been IIM Ahmedabad, one of the oldest and best-known management schools in the country, but this year there has been a shakeup, according to the Business Today-Nielsen ranking of India’s Best B-schools
In the latest ranking, IIM Bangalore was named the number one school in the country, making it to the top slot for the first time since 2002. In second place is IIM Calcutta, followed by IIM Ahmedabad. It is the first time in eight years that IIM-Ahmedabad has not held the top slot, the editors said.
The IIMs make up seven of the top ten business schools in the rankings, including IIM Indore, IIM Lucknow, and IIM Shillong. “In the context of business education in India, an MBA degree from an IIM has always been the key to riches, glory and recognition,” according to the Business Times’ article revealing the rankings.
The privately funded Indian School of Business (ISB) Hyderabad holds the eighth spot in the ranking, dropping one spot from last year. FMS Delhi and XLRI Jamshedpur both share the tenth spot.
IIM Bangalore has made its way to the number one position because of "its unmasked ambition for growth and an increased thrust on research," according to the ranking editors' note.
One big question the rankings editors raised is what impact the Foreign Education Bill will have on Indian business schools. The bill is being considered by India's parliament and, if it passes, would allow the entry of foreign universities into India. Schools like Duke University's Fuqua School of Business, York University's Schulich School of Business (link) and Georgia Institute of Technology have expressed interest in setting up campuses in India.
Most leading Indian business schools do not appear to be worried, so far at least. "Yes, good institutions are likely to come, and we could all do with some healthy competition," said IIM-Ahmedabad's Director Samir K. Baura, in the Business Times' ranking story.
I'll be curious to see if there will be a more serious shakeup in the BT-Nielson rankings in the coming years when - and if - the Foreign Education Bill passes. Will Indian students want a degree from a brand name Western business school or an IIM, if given the choice? Only time will tell.