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Issue Date: November 15, 2008, Posted On: 11/18/2008

India part of Duke expansion

Fuqua School of Business creates board in India, which will guide school as it launches in New Delhi



Duke University Fuqua School of Business Dean Blair Sheppard.

DURHAM, N.C. – Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business – which consistently ranks among the top-10 business schools in the nation – has launched an ambitious overseas expansion plan that calls for the establishment of five campuses in strategic cities across Asia and Europe, including New Delhi.

Fuqua Dean Blair Sheppard announced Oct. 13 that the school is in the process of establishing outposts in St. Petersburg, London, Shanghai, Dubai and New Delhi. The school also created a board of directors, consisting of graduates of Fuqua’s MBA programs, to advise the university on strategies for expanding and enhancing Duke’s presence in India. The advisory board, which will also assist Duke in forging new partnerships in the country, is headed by Malvinder Singh, the chairman, chief executive officer and managing director of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd.

Other board members include Amit Mitra, secretary general of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry; Suhail Nathani, a partner at the Mumbai-based law firm Economics Law Practice; Timothy Kasbe, chief information officer at Reliance Retail Ltd.; Sanjith Shetty, vice chairman, Soham Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd., a subsidiary of Ahmedabad-based commercial-real-estate developer Sohan Group Ltd.; Devinjit Singh, managing director of Asia for the Carlyle Group, a Washington, D.C.-based private-equity firm; Shivinder Singh, CEO and managing director of New Delhi-based Fortis Healthcare Ltd.; Vikrampati Singhania, deputy managing director of the J.K. Organization, a New Delhi-based industrial conglomerate; and Bharat Tandon, president and CEO of SABIC India Pvt. Ltd., a New Delhi-based subsidiary of Saudi Basic Industries Corp., a Riyadh-headquartered industrial conglomerate.

Sheppard characterized Fuqua’s aggressive overseas expansion as a major step that will elevate the business school and Duke University above peer institutions of higher learning and make it the world’s first legitimate, international university.

“With the simultaneous launch of our new international locations, Fuqua will be the first truly global business school, shaped and driven by the fundamental issues of our time,” Sheppard said. “The depth of our activities in each location ensures we will become truly embedded in each region. By engaging with these regions through education and research, we will be able to examine the world’s opportunities and problems, explore interdependencies between regions, create solutions to address world issues, and prepare practitioners to be change agents and informed leaders.”

Duke maintains a relationship with India that goes back years and spans the public and private sectors. Some examples:

  • Duke’s Terry Sanford Institute for Public Policy has for many years worked with the Indian Administrative Service on professional education for civil servants.
  • The Duke Center for International Development designs and delivers customized educational and training programs for government agencies across India.
  • Duke Corporate Education collaborates with the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad to provide custom corporate education programs.
  • In May 2008, Duke’s Talent Identification Program offered a three-week residential pilot program on the campus of the Indian Institute for Management Ahmedabad for academically gifted Indian students; the program will be repeated next year at IIMA and in New Delhi. 

Given the university’s strong ties to India and its popularity among Indian students – currently, nearly 300 Indian-born undergraduate and graduate students attend the Duke – including the South Asian nation in the university’s overseas expansion was an easy decision, according to Duke President Richard Brodhead.

“I don’t think anyone would dispute that with India’s size, economic and political strength, and its vast pool of talented students and academics, it is a place from which we can learn a great deal,” Brodhead said in a statement. “At the same time, we are building lasting relationships that will help secure a shared future of teaching and learning with India. Duke’s strengths in business, public policy, the environment and biomedical research present a unique and compelling opportunity for collaboration with colleagues in India.”

Singh, the CEO and managing director of Ranbaxy Laboratories and the chairman of the newly formed Duke India Alumni Advisory Board, welcomed his alma mater to his home country and predicted that it will set a new standard for international education programs.

“I am delighted to see the vision of a world-class university, such as Duke, take shape here in India. Being an alumnus, I can say with confidence that I gained enormously from its open, multidisciplinary, multicultural education format and the top-class intellectual input and rigor Duke provides,” Singh said. “I am sure it will set a new benchmark for liberal university education in India and augment the much needed requirement for world class professional institutions that are urgently needed to bridge the high quality talent needs of the fast globalizing Indian economy.”

According to Sheppard, Fuqua’s plans are unique among business schools, as they extend beyond the limited and casual affiliations that have traditionally defined international academic programs. Each of Fuqua’s new regional engagements will feature open enrollment executive education, at least two research centers, Duke faculty or joint faculty appointments, service-based activities focused on local needs, an MBA offering (with the exception of Johannesburg), a Duke Corporate Education presence and involvement of other parts of Duke University.

“A comprehensive understanding of the new world economy requires expertise in a number of areas that touch upon business,” Sheppard said. “To deliver an interdisciplinary experience, we will engage the resources of other schools within Duke: Duke University School of Law, Terry Sanford Institute of Public Policy, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University School of Medicine, Pratt School of Engineering and Duke Global Health Institute.”

Fuqua’s new global initiative begins in August 2009 with students entering the Duke MBA-Cross Continent program – initially, the only program the foreign campuses will support – which targets high-potential junior and middle managers. Eventually, however, Fuqua will make available all of its MBA programs at its overseas campuses. Fuqua launched its Cross Continent program in 2000, with the goal of building on the strengths of its Duke MBA-Global Executive program. Students in the two-year degree program will spend one to two weeks at each of the five international sites and conclude their coursework with a four-week stretch in Durham. Tuition for the program will cost $101,900, according to Fuqua's Web site.

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