The India School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad, ranked among the top 20 business schools in the world by the Financial Times is not an institution recognised by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), the regulatory body for technical education.
ISB is the only B-school from India to be ever ranked among top 20. The AICTE’s disregard of its ranking hasn’t had any impact on the School’s standing among the students and the business community. In fact, ISB’s faculty members claim that the standards they follow are higher than those prescribed by the regulatory council. “We have nothing against AICTE. We have always tried to maintain the best global standards,” said R. Rammohana Rao, Dean, ISB.
Repeated attempt to contact acting AICTE chairman RA Yadav to elicit his views on the issue were to no avail.
ISB's high ranking is a proof that the Council's system of approvals focused more on regulation than on ensuring quality education, conceded an official of the HRD ministry. He said the ISB case has given the ministry a concrete reason to go into the AICTE's functioning and the standards it has laid down. "Very soon we will review the functioning of both AICTE and the University Grants Commission," a top official told HT.
ISB started about six years ago with the help of the corporate sector and did not bother to seek approval from the AICTE. For ISB, it meant lack of government recognition of its alumini. "But ISB passouts got impressive placements in MNCs with pay packets of over Rs one crore," the official said.
The ISB also has another first to its credit: collaborate with three foreign institutions -- Kellogg School of Management, The Wharton School and the London Business School without AICTE's permission.
There are about 80 institutions in India teaching with the help of foreign collaborators without the Council's approval. For its part, the AICTE has cleared only three tie-ups with foreign universities. An AICTE official confirmed that applications of another 80 for signing MoUs with foreign institutions were pending with the council.