The business stories of Indian companies like Byjus, Axis My India, Indian Bank and Allahabad Bank, have been featured in the curriculum of Harvard Business School. While these are just a few examples, a total of 150 such case studies of various Indian companies have made their way into the study materials of the school in the past few years.
The proliferation of Indian businesses has become so crucial to the world economy, that B-schools like the Harvard Business School consider it relevant to include their case studies in the curriculum to benefit the students.
The inclusion of case studies, especially in the field of business and management, gives insights into the real world happening. It helps students to understand the ever-changing, growing and evolving sector of business even better. Indian case studies are being picked up because the Indian economy is growing rapidly influencing the global economy. The case studies chosen are about real companies involving real people, real progress and real challenges. This keeps the students well connected with reality.
Unlike the usual pedagogy which involves offering only theoretical knowledge through textbooks, the Harvard Business School thus has gone out of its way to include real-life case studies of Indian businesses.
The decision of which case studies to pick rests with the college professors. They along with the help of their research associates approach the chosen organisation. Once the organisations agree to host them and share their information with the school, the professors visit the company and conduct an on-site study. This involves conducting interviews with the authorities, understanding the issues and challenges faced by the organisation, understanding the hierarchical structure and operations, and reviewing the relevant material. With the collected information, case studies are built for the students.
The business school facilitates this process of building case studies through its group of research offices located in different parts of the world, including one in Mumbai. Harvard Business Publishing, a not-for-profit, wholly-owned subsidiary of Harvard University is entrusted with the responsibility to produce magazines, case studies, articles, videos, textbooks, or any content as study material for the students of Harvard as well as other institutes.
80% of the cases used in universities, schools and other organisations around the globe are supplied by the Harvard Business School. The study material they provide thus has a worldwide reach.
Business schools like Harvard also understand the potential local and international business hold in today’s world and how they can become game changers overnight. For this purpose, Harvard’s research group based in India cover a wide range of topics when choosing their case studies right from talking about the leadership among employees during the terrorist attack on the Taj Palace Hotel in Mumbai to Dabbawala meal-delivery system.
Lastly, given the present macroeconomic scenario, it has become important for all B-schools across the world to cover more and more case studies of not just Indian companies but companies across the globe. This will help in understanding how businesses are performing in emerging economies and in coordination with each other.