IXP Course: India; Social Entrepreneurship - Harvard Business School MBA Program

IXP Course: India; Social Entrepreneurship

Course Number 6066

Professor Shawn A. Cole
Professor of Management Practice Arthur I. Segel
Lecturer Sid Yog
On-Campus meetings during the Fall Term: (October 1, December 3)
January Term travel: January 5 - 16 in country
Program fee & travel costs (see details on financial aid eligibility)
3.0 credits applied toward Winter term requirements
Enrollment: 45

Educational Objectives

This course is designed to provide students with a comprehensive and broad introduction to India, while also allowing them to engage deeply in one of three focus areas: real estate and infrastructure; social enterprise; entrepreneurship and private equity.

India's large population and fast-growing economy promises tremendous potential (the OECD predicts India's per capita GDP in 2060 will be equal to the current U.S. per capita GDP). At the same time, 180 million Indians live at or below the global poverty line, with some observers expressing concern that India may develop into "pockets of Europe surrounded by sub-Saharan Africa."

Through classroom meetings, site visits, and invited speakers and guests, the course will examine economic, political, and social factors that will shape India's development over the fifty years (approximately 1/3rd of the course). The balance of the course will involve student projects, sourced and vetted by faculty, designed to allow students to develop real expertise in a particular subject of interest. (approximately 2/3rd of the IXP).

The course will bring students to India's two largest cities, Mumbai and Delhi, as well as Udaipur and its hinterland, exposing the class to a tremendously diverse and varied business environment: one full of tremendous promise of underlying demand and ability to innovate, but dense with challenges of execution and ability to scale. Project work will take place in Mumbai, India's largest city and the financial headquarters of the country

Project selection will be based on student demand. Social enterprise projects may cover health, affordable housing, technology, and clean energy. Real estate projects will cover the gamut, both sectoral and functional, from large infrastructure projects, to retail, housing, marketing and finance; private equity projects will highlight what is different about Indian investment environment and processes; and entrepreneurship projects will seek to have students do project work in promising start-ups alongside entrepreneurs or VC firms. Depending upon availability and student demand, certain project work may combine one or more tracks

Career Focus

Students planning to lead, advise, or invest in companies with a current or anticipated future presence in India and other emerging markets will also find this course appealing. The course will take a general management perspective, but also allow each student team to deeply engagement a specific topic.

The faculty will seek to connect students who express an interest in career opportunities in India following graduate with mentors and industry leaders who can offer specific perspectives and expertise.

Course Content and Organization

Overview and Introduction: The IXP will meet for two class sessions in the fall in an effort to (1) provide a broad overview of the institutional context in India and consider the causes and consequences of some of the most pressing challenges faced by the country , (2) highlight real world entrepreneurial attempts to provide solutions to these problems via case studies, and (3) allow some time for student teams to work together and prepare for travel.

Projects: Students will assemble into teams of four to work together on projects during the course of the India IXP. These teams will work closely with their host organization to address a problem of operational or strategic importance. Each team will be assigned an external mentor, drawn from local HBS alumni base.

Deliverables: Student teams will present their final project recommendations during a capstone event at the end of the India portion of the IXP. Feedback during this capstone will later be incorporated into a final paper (ca. 20 double-spaced pages) that summarizes the final recommendations and provides the organization guidance towards implementing the proposed solution.



The IXP Model

In contrast to FIELD 2 Global Immersions, IXPs are customized according to individual faculty research and are designed to enable students to take an active role in the construction of their learning. In many instances, IXPs are built with a specific focus in mind and teams of students are called upon to collaborate directly with local company partners to scope projects, collect data and organize work plans before and during the immersion. Alternatively, some IXPs are designed to provide a more macro-level understanding of business practices in a specific country, and require students to prepare for engagement with a number of firms representing multiple industries. Longer in duration than FIELD 2, IXPs also tailor learning via field-based exercises, panel presentations, guest lectures, alumni events and plenary visits to relevant companies and organizations.

Course Credit and Fees

Students who successfully complete this IXP will earn 3.0 course credits, which will be posted in the Winter term.

HBS will provide in-country logistics for IXPs (including accommodations, select meals, and local travel) but students will need to contribute a fee of $1,800 towards defraying a part of these costs. In addition, students are responsible for their international round-trip air travel to India. Students who have an existing financial aid application on file may submit for additional financial support to participate in this IXP. Please see the Financial Aid website (login required) for more information on financial support for IXP courses.