Established in 1956 at the initiative of the government and the corporate sector, the Administrative Staﬀ College of India (A S C I ), Hyderabad, has pioneered post-experience management education in India. A S C I equips corporate managers, administrators, entrepreneurs and academicians with the skills to synthesize managerial theory and practice; and respond to the ever-increasing complexity of managerial issues confronting government, industrial enterprises and non-government organizations.
“I need not tell you how important I feel this institution is, not because it is the first in Asia or third in the world, but because obviously, it performs a task which is of high importance in the present state of our country, perhaps of other countries too.”
— Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the First Prime Minister of India during his visit to the College on 23 Oct. 1958
The Administrative Staff College of India is an institution of excellence and national importance. Established in 1956, it is the first and foremost institution of its kind in the country. Set up as an institution with a difference at the joint initiative of both the Government of India and the industry, it is an autonomous, self-supporting, public-purpose institution with the objectives of being a think-tank for policy inputs and to build the capacities of practicing professionals in the management of government and business enterprises.
ASCI is a registered society by constitution. At the apex of its governance structure is a policy-setting, oversight body, the Court of Governors (CoG). It is a virtual who’s who of eminent professionals, public figures and industry leaders who have distinguished themselves in their respective fields of specialization in education, enterprise, administration, management and governance spanning a wide variety of sectors like agriculture, banking, engineering, economics, judiciary, law, manufacturing, science and technology and public administration.
The Chairmen of the Court of Governors since inception are: (i) Mr. John Mathai, former Union Finance Minister; (ii) Mr. C.D. Deshmukh, former Governor of RBI and former Union Finance Minister; (iii) Mr. Dharma Vira, former Cabinet Secretary to the GoI; (iv) Mr. M. Narasimham, former Governor of RBI, Finance
Secretary to the GoI and Executive Director at the World Bank and IMF, Vice-President at ADB; (v) Dr. Abid Hussain, former Member of Planning Commission and Ambassador to the USA.
The current Chairman, Sri K Padmanabhaiah, IAS (Retd), was the Former Home Secretary, Government of India.
The Court of Governors of ASCI includes, in ex-officio capacity, (i) Secretary, Dept. of Personnel & Training, GoI; (ii) Finance Secretary, GoI; (iii) Secretary, Dept. of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, GoI; and, (iv) Chief Secretary to the Government of Telangana.
Dr. Nirmalya Bagchi, is currently the Director General. He is the Chief Executive of the College. He functions under the overall guidance of the CoG, leading, facilitating and coordinating the functions of the College and its activities.
Capacity building and applied research assignments constitute the bedrock of the activities of ASCI. They have larger societal benefit and public good as the key cornerstones. ASCI integrates economic, social, cultural, financial, technological, regulatory, human, organizational, and environmental aspects into its management training and action-research initiatives for addressing issues of topical interest and current concern to the government and the industry. With its focus on policy, strategy, management, governance, regulation and socio-economic impact evaluation, ASCI brings knowledge inputs, informed advice, best practice and innovative ideas to bear on its training, policy advocacy, advisory and implementation-assistance services. In the process, it provides opportunities to State and Central Government Departments and Ministries in India and abroad as well as the industry, to develop sustainable policies, devise inclusive strategies and deploying robust plans towards improved economic performance, human development and social progress.
As a result, ASCI enjoys the trust and confidence of the government and industry and is relied upon and entrusted with assignments of varied scale, scope, sweep, spread and specialization.
ASCI conducts about 200 Management Development Programmes (MDPs) per year, on a variety of functional management areas, theme-specific domains and sectoral disciplines. About 4,500 participants benefit from these programs every year. As on date, more than 125,000 civil servants as well as executives from the industry have been trained by the College. That about 250 international participants from about 100 organizations in 35 countries avail the benefit of its programs signifies the global reputation and reach of ASCI.
The international programs of ASCI leverage the enduring partnerships that it built and nurtures with similar top-notch institutions abroad in Asia (China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam), Europe (France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland) and the US provide the much-desired exposure on global best practices, to the participants of its programs.
ASCI has, over the past five and half decades, built a strong rapport with the government and industry and gained valuable insights into the various issues of public policy and business management. The Ministries of Defence, External Affairs; Finance; Home Affairs; Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Human Resource Development; Labour & Employment; Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions; Rural Development; Science & Technology; Statistics & Program Implementation and Urban Development of the Govt. of India are among the key partners with whom ASCI has a long-term association for meeting their capacity building needs.
With increasing focus both at the Central and State government levels to improve the service delivery in hospitals and consequently, healthcare outcomes, and with rising awareness and expectations from the citizens about quality healthcare, ASCI started a two-year, full-time Post Graduate Diploma in Management Program. The objective of this Program is to equip the industry and the government with well-trained professionals in hospital administration and healthcare management. The Program, approved by the All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), is now into its 17th successful year of running.
ASCI is the chosen advisory and research destination for about 100 international and national organizations, year on year. Apart from several Ministries of the Government of India (as above) and Departments of State Governments, several bilateral and multi-lateral institutions choose ASCI as their knowledge-partner for their applied research studies and action research projects. These include the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Children’s Fund, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific, the United States Agency for International Development, the Department for International Development (UK), Japan Bank for International Cooperation, Japan International Cooperation Agency, the Commonwealth Secretariat, Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (Germany), the Bill Melinda Gates Foundation, among others.
Thus, through a multitude of capacity building and sponsored research studies, ASCI contributes to a two-way cycle of theory and practice, each shaping the other, focusing as much on the effectiveness of outcomes as on the efficiency of outputs. As is widely acknowledged, the training initiatives and research inputs that ASCI provides yield good results and hence are welcomed by the stakeholders at large.
ASCI has on its rolls, a complement of about forty inter-disciplinary faculty members, who have higher degrees and well-rounded (academic and industry) experience in a wide range disciplines and domains. This core team is assisted by a strong contingent of academic and research support staff. The faculty and research teams, based on their domain expertise and research interests, operate from the following Centres:
In addition, the Centre for Innovations in Public Systems (CIPS, www.cips.org.in) is a specialized entity at ASCI, established by the Govt. of India on the recommendation of the Thirteenth Finance Commission. The Centre addresses areas that need systematic attention and contributes towards sustainable outcomes in meeting rising social aspirations. It provides assistance to the State Governments in developing policies for promoting an innovative culture for transforming creative ideas into sustainable practices at the local level.
The Centre thus helps create a climate to nurture a culture for accelerating and diffusing innovation in public systems.
Similarly, the Centre for Excellence in Management of Land Acquisition, Resettlement and Rehabilitation (CMLARR, www.rlarrdc.org.in), supported by the World Bank and AusAID, has been offering capacity building interventions and research studies on the new Land Acquisition laws, procedures, compensation, R & R norms, institutional mechanisms, social impact assessment and corporate social responsibility to the Department of Land Resources, Government of India, various state governments, central public sector enterprises as well as the countries in Asia and Africa.
The motto of the College is leadership through learning. The College monogram was designed by Shri V N Adarkar of the J J Institute of Applied Arts, Bombay (now Mumbai) in 1961.
The “Sanskrit Sloka” (verse in Sanskrit) in the College Monogram, chosen from the “Rigveda” X.191, the first of the four “Vedas”, texts originating in ancient India and constituting the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism, means: “Meet together; Talk together”.
The translation of the full Sloka is:
May your minds comprehend alike
Common be your action and achievement
Common be your thoughts and intentions
Common be the wishes of your hearts ….
So there may be thorough union among you”.
It is these ideals, value and principles, which guide the knowledge-exchange and experience-sharing that set ASCI apart as a unique institution and make it a much sought-after learning forum for young managers and top officials alike from the government, public and private sectors, from within and outside India.
“It gives me great pleasure to be associated with the Golden Jubilee celebrations of ASCI. The College has served our nation with great distinction. I pray that the next 50 years will be still more productive in the service of our people”
– Dr Manmohan Singh, Former Prime Minister of India