Dimensions of current management research in India: some issues – by M H Bala Subrahmanya


Source: South Asian Journal of Management, Apr-Jun 2005

Management research has been steadily gaining increased prominence as a ‘field of study’ in management institutions across India. This could be due to more and more ‘career avenues’ emerging not only in the steadily increasing management institutions but also in the ever-growing corporate sector characterized by the entry of growing number of TNCs both in the manufacturing and service sectors, year by year, in the country. Today management research students in India identify and pursue research in diverse issues covering not just the four functional areas of finance, human resources, marketing, production and systems, and economics but allied as well as emerging areas such as energy and environment, intellectual property and policy issues.

These research activities would not only provide solutions to the growing management challenges in the competitive environment confronted by corporate leaders as well as policy-makers but also expand the frontiers of management related knowledge in the Indian context. More significantly, it would give the ‘much-needed’ upward thrust to the quality of management education and training in the country.

It is to identify, address and deliberate upon the core management research issues in the country that the Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Science (USc), Bangalore formed the Consortium of Students in Management Research (COSMAR) in 2001 and organized the first COSMAR Conference. Since then the COSMAR Conference has become an annual event. COSMAR Conference is unique in India as it brings together management research students from diverse institutions across the country.

COSMAR Conference has been providing a forum for:

* Interaction for management research students to discuss current research issues in management and allied disciplines.

* Professional networking among management research students, academicians and practitioners.

* Evolving a credible thought center for management theorists and practitioners.

The primary objective of COSMAR is to identify and promote quality management research, among others, by inviting management research students to submit their research papers, shortlisting the quality papers for subsequent presentations and discussions, and scrutinizing them intensively by a jury comprising management teachers/professionals for awarding prizes. The event has been supported by some of the reputed companies and institutions in the country, apart from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. The event has attracted papers from all premier institutions such as UTs and UMs, and several other prominent research institutions and universities from across the country, in addition to IISc.

The fourth Conference of COSMAR has covered several core management research issues related to Indian economy. The Conference was held at IISc, Bangalore, during September 24-25, 2004- COSMAR 2004 Conference had attracted 91 papers from management research students from all over the country out of which 46 papers were shortlisted and 26 papers were presented and discussed. This is a special issue of South Asian journal of Management (SAJM) on COSMAR Conference 2004, which consists of six of the 26 papers presented. In fact, this is the second special issue of SAJM on COSMAR Conference. The Association of Management Development Institutions of South Asia (AMDISA), its founder-director Dr. Dharni Prasad Sinha and the Editor of SAJM, Prof. Mathew J Manimala, have been quite encouraging and are primarily responsible for this special issue.

The selected six papers of COSMAR Conference 2004 fall under Finance (two papers), Energy Economics (one paper), Management of Intellectual Property/HRM (one paper), Marketing (one paper), and Systems (one paper) disciplines. Of the two finance papers, one deals with the effect of the introduction of “options” on the volatility of the underlying stocks and the other probes the impact of Growth Option Value (GOV) on the market value of firms. Thus, the two finance papers address the issues concerning the Indian stock market. The energy economics paper ascertains the barriers for achieving energy efficiency in small enterprises and ranks them for a prioritized solution. The intellectual property management paper focuses on the development of patent externalization potential in organizations. The marketing paper analyzes the reliability of a retail service quality instrument in measuring the gap between customer expectations and their perceptions about the service quality of retail stores. The last paper, in systems, discusses the development of a model that enables the determination of a hedging point up to which introduction of new products will be profitable for manufacturing firms. Thus, the six papers broadly cover divergent issues in management research having implications for Indian economy in general and industrial and corporate sectors in particular.

The steadily growing capital market in Indian economy has been attracting more and more financial researchers to focus on various issues concerning the capital market as a research area. The effect of the introduction of “options” on the volatility of the underlying stocks is relatively an un-probed issue in the context of Indian equity market. This could be partly attributed to the nascent stage of development of the derivatives market in the country. Studies conducted with reference to developed markets have so far come out with contradictory findings. Joshi has perhaps made the maiden attempt in the Indian context to investigate the change, if any, in the marginal Volatility of stocks due to the introduction of options. She concludes that the introduction of options has not led to any significant change in the volatility of the underlying spot market of individual stocks. Considering this, the study has policy implications for devising appropriate trading mechanisms.

The other issue of importance is the Impact of Growth Option Value (GOV) on the market value of firms. Dhayanithy has probed this problem by defining and estimating GOV (in terms of a growth abandonment swapping option structure at the firm level) for a cross section of Indian firms. He finds that GOV is a significant explanatory variable of market capitalization of firms in India. This finding has significance not only for managers but also for financial analysts of emerging markets.

Indian industry, Small Scale Industry (SSI) occupies a place of strategic importance due to its significant contribution to industrial production, employment and exports, among others. The current issue of primary concern for SSI is how to enhance its competitiveness for its long-term development in the competitive environment. Nagesha addresses this issue from the point of view of energy consumption and efficiency in SSI. He identifies the relevant barriers to energy efficiency in the context of three energy intensive SSI clusters in south India, viz., Foundry, Textile Dyeing and Bricks and tiles. Using the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) he analyzes and ranks the barriers to energy efficiency in the SSI clusters. He concludes that the Financial and Economic Barrier (FEB) and the Behavioral and Personal Barrier (BPB) are the two top obstacles, which need to be addressed on priority for energy efficiency improvement in SSI.

The rapid emergence and spread of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and knowledge intensive industries since the early 1990s and particularly after the mid-1990s has led to the growth of Intellectual Property Management as a new discipline of research. Bhaduri, while recognizing the importance of developing patent externalization potential in organizations, probes the competitive intelligence gathering practices in organizations. She identifies the relevant practices, which need to be incorporated within organizations for ensuring better patent externalization potential.

The steady growth in the population and level of income in the country has been fuelling the growth of retail marketing across the country. However, the success of retail marketing at the firm level depends on its quality. But what factors determine the quality of retail marketing? Parikh’s paper deals with the application of Dabholkar’s retail service quality instrument in measuring the gap between customer expectations and their perceptions about the service quality of retail stores in India. His analysis substantiates the reliability of Dabholkar’s instrument in Indian conditions for the study of customer perceptions on the service quality of retail stores. The study has also thrown open new issues for further research.

In the current competitive world economy, new product development has assumed greater importance in the competitive strategy of manufacturing firms. However, achieving this objective is easier said than done, particularly in the context of finite limited capacity of manufacturing plant/s of an enterprise. In this context, Dulluri probes the optimization problem of introduction of new products in the presence of old products. He proposes on the one hand, stochastic models for maximizing profits by selecting the optimal pace of introduction of new products and on the other, capacity rationing for the old as well as the new products. He develops a model, which enables the determination of a hedging point until which the introduction of new products will be profitable for a manufacturing firm (but not beyond the point).

Thus all the six papers have identified diverse micro issues concerning management, developed methodologies, analyzed the problems, arrived at the solutions and offered policy prescriptions, wherever appropriate. The analysis and results of these papers will be beneficial not only to the academicians and management researchers at large but also to policy-makers.

Overall, it is hoped that the current issue of SAJM provides readers with a glimpse of current management research problems, their analysis and solutions in the Indian context. This special issue on COSMAR Conference 2004 is not the outcome of work of a single individual. I would like to express my deep sense of gratitude and appreciation to the Editor of the South Asian journal of Management, Mathew J Manimala, for his constant support, help, guidance and encouragement in the preparation of this volume. I am grateful to all the referees and individuals who helped in bringing out this issue.

M H BaIa Subrahmanya*

(Guest Editor: Special Issue)

* Associate Professor (Economics), Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India. His field of specialization is industrial economics with reference to SMEs, Economics of Technological Innovations and Industrial Policy issues. E-mail: bala@mgmt.iisc.ernet.in

Copyright AMDISA Secretariat Apr-Jun 2005
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved

Subrahmanya, M H Bala “Dimensions of Current Management Research in India: Some Issues”. South Asian Journal of Management. FindArticles.com. 12 Aug, 2010. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa5483/is_200504/ai_n21377658/

Copyright AMDISA Secretariat Apr-Jun 2005
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved

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