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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Questioning the Axioms

1- In general, the misconceptions held by the technical elite are derived from an idea cherished by many in the developing world that pure research leads to technological development and then to products that open new markets or conquer existing ones. This naive “linear theory” or “cradle-to-grave” approach to science and development served as the blueprint for the establishment of the National Science Foundation in the United States and was widely copied throughout the world. But that model fails to stress the interaction that should occur among the phases. As one moves from pure research to technological development and then to production and marketing, unanticipated problems arise that require reexamination and adaptation at the earlier stages. [Source]

2- As any environmentalist or social scientist will tell you disapprovingly, the world simply can’t afford another America. It will simply collapse. But even though no one can quite match America’s excess, the world aspires to it. We see it as Development, Growth, Progress.

3- There is mass sell of public property, land and companies to private enterprise in the name of development. This type of developmental policy is antithesis of real human advance. It is promoted both internally and externally as a way to help the poor. In reality social and monetary capital flows only in one direction. Large companies stake claim to people’s lands and resources, profiteering themselves, offering in return only a fraction of what they take and destroying carefully nurtured and ancient environment. Population driven from rural areas to urban areas are exploited in the name of cheap labour. Developed world is guarding its boundaries and only allowing MNC in the name of free not fair trade. Quite a paradox we live in, where economic hubs are cities and majority of voters in rural sector.

Personal Example:
Sustainability and Development are key words forming a paradox with each other. Sustainable Living is associated with consuming less – being satisfied with a simple and frugal life. Development is associated with never ending desires – always wanting more. Sustainable lifestyle requires Constancy, Sameness and Repetition. Development is associated with Change, New and Transience.

Planned development upheld the principle of 'service before profit', unlike 'What is in it for me? ' principle of companies. Development work is considered intellectually inferior, unlike engineering, industry or diplomacy. I want to prove that it is both a challenging and a noble choice. When I will not associate my identity within social and cultural fabric of their country, nothing is going to change. A person should not be bounded by school of thought but should focus on the need of hour and future. I choose the less traveled path. I see myself as a person who who is practical and makes choices to choose from, instead of choosing the only available choice.

"The Philosophers have interpreted the world in various ways, but the point is to - Change it!" -- Karl Marx

Why preparing for IRMA?
Answer lies in the Approach towards problem:

There are mainly 2 types of approach taken for development in any economy. Top -Bottom approach and vice versa. Its always the bottom up approach has gone successful by proper implemention. The reason of failure of this approach is not that it is flawed, but because it is not supported by those who are able to invest in it. The example of Orissa and West Bengal can be given, where government is encouraging industrialization at large pace, but not able to develop people at the same pace. The result is the improper usage of resources [Economics deals with optimal usage of resources] and there are no rules or regulations in the state. If people are not ready and they are not able to use the resources the industries are generating, what is the use of industrialization. At the later stage the economy will be in a chaos and government will not be able to implement any regulations. People are already opposing such practices. Because they are not ready, or they don't know that it will be beneficial. In such case first Bottom should be developed and not the top.

Past changes in India today were brought about by common people from the masses rather than a top down reform from the top. (While top-down reform was done, it usually followed some courageous and path breaking demands from the masses). Any change is best when organic—rising from the bottom rather than imposed from the top—the odds of assimilation improve dramatically. Urbanization of the rural sector is the way of current development with very limited powers in the hand of people affected by it. IIM or any top notch B school is top to bottom approach and IRMA is like bottom to top approach. In former, connections are made at upper level, money raised and then idea is implemented. Here, an idea is implemented at ground level and thereby driving people into co-operative like structure. No idea how good an idea is, unless people understand it, embrace it as their own and help in implementing them. This is called inclusive development in my dictionary. If the more people's life standard is enriched by it, that is integrated development. The education given in top notch colleges of management mostly makes you isolated from the rest of the country in an ivory tower, more connected to share markets or investment firms of Europe or United States than to the obvious needs of industry, agriculture, and education in our own Bharat.

Currently, I have made "Questioning the axioms " mantra as my tool in doing analysis of any problem. This 'trial and error' thinking tool is given by Srikant Singh citing work of Bernhard Riemann on non euclidean geometry. I was impressed 7 inspired at that moment but implementing this first time. It is helping me lot, will publish some original results soon on the blog...

'If the entire world wants to go left and, you feel like going right, go right. You don't have to make a big deal about it. Just go. Its very easy.' -Sotiri, Yanni's father.

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