This year an estimated 150,000 aspirants will try to get into a business school of repute. It isn't going to be a cakewalk for them. The top 25 B-schools together have room for admitting only around 7,000 or so students and, every year, the competition to be one of them is getting tougher.
A B-School degree is probably the most coveted professional certification as far as making a career in corporate India is concerned and it is not surprising that the number of young people attempting to get into such schools is growing each year. Back in 1998, when Business Today broke new ground by publishing the first ever business school rankings, we recognised how important it was for aspirants as well as India Inc.'s recruiters to get an idea of how these schools stack up.
Ten years later, our annual survey of B-schools is even more relevant than it was then. For not only has the number of aspirants as well as recruiters swelled, the number of schools offering business management education has burgeoned. Small wonder that our Best B-Schools issue is widely anticipated by readers.
For the past five years, our knowledge partner for the annual survey has been Nielsen, the reputed global research firm, and our methodology has been constantly updated to reflect changes in the marketplace- the growing number of schools, changing recruitment trends as well as changes in what students and aspirants want from B-schools.
Besides our features on some of the top rankers on our list, the B-school special package this year includes several other features. One of them looks at how more and more Indian B-schools are mulling global affiliations or even a presence overseas. Another evaluates the advantages that students with a few years of work experience may enjoy and, a third looks at some off-the-beaten track MBAs who've eschewed cosy corporate careers and instead are using their education to make a difference in very different fields of work.
Our cover package also takes note of new trends and developments: a new school, founded by Kellogg's Bala Balachandran that could rival the Indian School of Business; and a growing inflow of students from other countries on Indian campuses.
And just so you don't think this issue is only on B-schools, we have other features you wouldn't like to miss: an exclusive 60 Minutes with Nokia's global chief, Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo; a story on how watch and jewellery maker Titan is diversifying yet again; and a feature on how three unlikely city municipalities are making waves by reforming the way they work.