In the second of the two-part interview, Professor Krishnamurthy Subramanian talks to Anjan Thakor, John E Simon Professor of Finance and Director of the PhD programme, Olin Business School, Washington University in St Louis, on the importance of research and on building a strong team of faculty at the Indian School of Business (ISB).
As a ten-year-old institution, ISB is still finding its feet as a research-oriented institution. The School’s vision is to be known as a thought leader for tomorrow. However, we must recognise that publishing in the top-tier journals is a culture that is often not very natural to countries outside the United States. As such, in this debate between relevance and rigor, what are the steps that ISB must take and who are the stakeholders that ISB needs to engage in the path towards realising this vision?
I think that for business schools, there are two key stakeholder groups – recruiters and faculty. Under recruiters, one group consists of the companies that are recruiting your students and the other comprises companies that you would like to welcome on board as recruiters. You need to engage with these companies and ensure that you understand their needs. You must also make sure that the students they recruit fit those needs. The other key stakeholder group is faculty. Besides that, there are also other important stakeholder groups such as students, alumni, etc, – but they all fall in place if you attend to the two key stakeholder groups that I mentioned. You must make sure that your faculty has the resources to do high-quality research and an environment that is conducive for that. I think having high-quality faculty who engage in high-quality academic research is the lifeblood of a good institution. I really believe that. Often, people question the need to have faculty who publish in top-tier journals that business people can’t read. I think this is important for a lot of reasons.