The India Leadership Workshop: An initiative by PRS Legislative Research and Indian School of Business

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Parliament passes an average of 60 Bills a year.  Each state legislature also passes a similar volume of legislation addressing an array of complex issues.  Bills cover subjects ranging from microfinance, land acquisition, and honour killings to the impact of pesticides on health.  Legislative matters have become increasingly more technical and require specialist inputs to be framed as effective public policy. Unlike other large democracies, legislators in India do not have access to institutional research support.  Access to formal information channels is normally available only to the Minister drafting the bill or to the select committee if the bill is referred to it. This deprives MLAs from participating in a more informed debate. Towards this end, PRS and the Indian School of Business (ISB) have initiated the first policy workshop of its kind for MLAs in India.  There is an emerging breed of proactive MLAs who are willing to seek out information to help them perform their role better. There are over 4000 MLAs in India, and a small group of MLAs in many states are showing this initiative.  They use the internet, consult specialists, and use resources like PRS to get updated or further information on issues affecting their state. About the Workshop The India Leadership workshop is for MLAs who want to be more effective legislators and assume positions of greater influence in state and national policymaking. This unique workshop is for rising stars who want to imbibe new approaches to policymaking and build professional networks with MLAs from different states.  The programme is led by distinguished faculty from internally reputed institutions including Harvard, IITs and IIMs. The three day workshop for progressive MLAs will be held at the campus of ISB in Hyderabad.

Four such sessions will be held during the year, with the maiden edition being launched in January 2011.  Over the last five years, PRS has worked with MPs across all political parties to brief them on relevant issues for their work in Parliament.  MPs have recommended that MLAs also would benefit from similar research services. Ajit Rangnekar, Dean, Indian School of Business (ISB) says, “The ISB is committed to working with the Industry and the Government to help achieve national goals. We already have had a long track of engaging with public sector enterprises, and more recently with various government departments, in both executive education and research. We are now delighted to partner with the PRS Legislative Research to develop this programme targeted at capacity building among Indian Legislators. We believe that this ongoing interaction between the government and academia will strengthen our collective understanding of national priorities and spur collaboration for greater impact.”