News & Highlights

  • March 2017
  • Alumni News

Weaving Success in India

“Once upon a time,” Nalli Kuppuswami Chetti begins as he recounts the history of weaving in India and the 89-year story of Nalli, his family’s iconic silk sari company. Chetti, interviewed by HBS Professor V.G. Narayanan, is one of 80-plus noteworthy business leaders from Africa, Mexico, Central and South America, South Asia, and Turkey whose wisdom and experience are now enshrined in the Creating Emerging Markets Oral History Collection at Baker Library. This winter, the HBS Business History Initiative, which launched the project, hosted a conference in India to celebrate the addition of more than a dozen in-depth interviews with Indian executives to the collection, including Chetti, Bajaj Group chairman Rahul Bajaj (MBA 1964), and Shahnaz Herbals founder and CEO Shahnaz Husain.

New Research on the Region

  • February 2017
  • Teaching Material

India's Amul: Keeping Up with the Times

By: Tarun Khanna, Rohit Deshpandé and Namrata Arora

  • February 2017 (Revised February 2017)
  • Case

Akshaya Patra: Impact at Scale

By: V. Kasturi Rangan and Sarah Appleby

  • 2017
  • Working Paper

Elite Ideas and Incremental Policy Change: The Expansion of Primary Education in India

This paper analyzes India’s recent enactment of universal primary education. Given the clientelistic features of Indian democracy, this programmatic policy change presents a puzzle. Drawing on interviews and official documents, I find that committed state elites introduced gradual changes to the education system over three decades. To put their ideas into practice, they used administrative mechanisms, layering small-scale reforms on top of the larger education system. As India embraced globalization in the 1990s, officials drew on World Bank resources to implement larger programs in underperforming regions, progressively extending them across the country. These incremental reforms supplied the institutional blueprint for India’s universal primary education program in 2000. As policies were introduced from above, civil society mobilized from below, using the judiciary to hold the state liable for implementing primary education. While reforms helped expand bureaucratic authority, they also generated new public demands for state accountability.

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Mumbai Staff

Anjali Raina
Executive Director
Namrata Arora
Senior Researcher
Saloni Chaturvedi
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Rachna Chawla
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Rachna Tahilyani
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