Republic Day Biathlon 2017

The IITB Biathlon climbs 10th step

What can be a better way to start the group challenge of 2017, the best year of the block of few years to vision 2020. Governments across levels in India have been working hard to accelerate growth.  If with that, some real ventures grow fast, including internationally, we will have more exciting jobs, careers and future. Having crossed the milestones such as 10,000 students, IIT Bombay (IITB) is also embarking multiple actions under a strategic plan 2017-20.  We at the Group on Competitiveness (GoC) are proud @ contributions we have made for research in the area, as well as, CSR.  10th IITB Biathlon is a good example of that CSR. Thanks to significant advance planning, response in registration was better. More importantly, conversion rate was far better, and we had more than 100 enthusiastic participants, including good  participation from M.Mgt., veteran athletes, regular practitioners and many first timers.  Important lessons emerged for many interested learners.

Here is just a glimpse of key highlights of the 10th Biathlon:

  • Enthusiasm of participants was amazing, many reported before time
  • Start was given by Reddy Coach, the veteran behind many initiatives on campus such as Swimathon
  • Participation in women category was far better this year; lead was provided by BTechs
  • Spirit of run was stronger and many could complete the full biathlon, perhaps highest in recent events; several people who got late, ran with enthusiasm
  • Regular practice helps in climbing heights. Some of the winners of this triathlon (see Table) practice regularly and have already completed full/half marathons/swimmathons or higher with good timing
  • Professor Sameer Jadhav, Chairman Sports, graced the occasion to witness the spirit and give medals to winners in different categories (a photo below; many more can be seen at the link)
  • On this auspicious occasion, winners were also given event T-shirts having creative design, thanks to efforts by IITB Sports Council

Table:  Leading athletes in different categories

Students-Male (5km run+7km cycling)
1st position Kuldeep Singh
2nd position Anand Gaurav
3rd position Manoj Kumar
Campusites-Male (5km run+7km cycling)
1st position Sahil Sharma
2nd position Vagish Prasad
3rd position Prof. Harish Phularia
Students+Campusites-Female(1.4 km run+5km cycling)
1st position Dhruti Shah
2nd position Tanya Singh
3rd position Mahika Raghunathan



All winners of different categories with Reddy Coach, volunteers and mentors

Winners in different categorieswith Reddy Coach, volunteers and mentors 

Such noble initiatives couldn’t have sustained without active contributions of several stakeholders. We remember several energetic youth who have contributed significantly to this 10 mile journey of IITB Biathlon, e.g. Pranusha, Ankur, Lalit and Vivek.  Sneha and team of researchers, Rahul, Vishwas and Rayees, have contributed significantly to this event. They have been building on good work of other researchers at SJMSOM.  Some of them have done very exciting experiments in research (as can be seen from their basic knowledge shared; pl. visit the urls by clicking,…).  Dhondi Sai Krishna, an amazing photographer has been contributing to Biathlon. Get a feel for event through his beautiful photography.

From coaching community, Dr. Reddy Coach has been a source of strong support. Prof. Sameer Jadhav, Prof. Sharat Chandran, Prof. B K Chakravarthy,…have all been contributing. Institute sports council has been cooperating for the event for years. This year, Aditya Kumawat, Sahil Dhingra and his team put considerable efforts. We thank all of above and many other hidden contributors, whom we couldn’t acknowledge here.

With such a milestone, we hope to plan next level event in coming planning cycle, once team has been trained adequately.  We are getting feel for difficulties ahead and hence are looking for associates keen on next level challenges. Wish to explore such evolving experiments, build capabilities through unique courses such as ‘International Competitiveness’ and the multi-stage selection process to take the challenge of becoming an associate of IITB ‘Group on Competitiveness’.

We are pleased to invite you to an information event at IITB that will bring professors of several leading Japanese universities to interact directly with IITB students keen on doing research in Japan. If you are keen, keep evening of March 9 free, and seek out details.



Thank you all for making 2016 a challenging and rewarding year

2016 was a challenging year in many respects. Leadership in politics introduced several pioneering initiatives such as “Startup India” and “Standup India” and to promote entrepreneurship and to  enhance “Ease of Doing Business”. Leading industry association, CII explicitely selected theme for 2016-17 “Building National Competitiveness”.  Such initiatives are helping bring awareness about competitiveness.

Group on competitiveness (GoC) has been steadily working on competitiveness research for knowledge creation and sharing to create awareness and has been striving hard to build on journey of more than 2 decade. We worked enormously on administrative fronts (e.g. Admissions), still we tried to advance on research as well as outreach. Achievements on research front are more remarkable due to some quality journals we competed. Here is just a glimpse of events, initiatives and achievements by members of GoC:
•       We matched 2013 peak (in terms of no. of papers), but with better quality and competed in newer arenas.
•       Years of hard work on research on internationalization, driven by Sundar had major break-outs. Comparative case studies of two competitive tyre firms of Indian origin (FIOs) has reached a relevant journal.
•       Sneha and Pranusha played at IIM Indore IB conference.  Sneha’s contribution  on IP was presented at 4th International Conference on IP and Strategy ( MIPS16). Findings of micro-studies have started reaching audiences as book chapter through platforms such as RG.
•        With 3 papers, Dharmesh is competing at an international journal from
his work on innovation management
•  Lalit’s contribution on technological innovation reached an international strategy and management journal.
•       No. of associates learning Japanese is growing and we had visit of the
Ambassador of Japan to IITB campus, perhaps first time in 2010s.
•       We had quite energetic participants from build to last firms (e.g. > 6
decades of journey), who endured grueling program (see photo) Management of Technology
and Innovation for Competitiveness at IITB campus.

Alert learners keen to know @ IITB Research Park even @ 22:00

Alert learners keen to know @ IITB Research Park even @ 22:00

•     We have started selection processes for selecting energetic participants (e.g.
triathloners/biathloners, if not swimmathoners) for the unique IITB 2017
program. Interested learners can complete the form.

•       Last, but not the least, thanks to hard work of members and associates
of GoC over years, we crossed the target of 1000 citations much ahead of
time (2018).

Triathlon / swimathon friendly members of GoC are excited to welcome new
challenges of 2017, as our balanced and efficient operation help us intensify our contributions to IITB (in its new strategic plan) and in arenas of internationalization and MoT for international competitiveness.

With steps towards better quality and knowledge sharing with industry in 2016, learners of competitiveness will take next level challenges in 2017 and beyond to achieve our contributions targets for Vision 2020.

IITB Republic Day Biathlon 2016

With an efficient government starting several path breaking initiatives, 2016 promises to be a memorable year. One very exciting initiative for learners of competitiveness focusing on venture competitiveness, may be the ‘Start-up India Summit’ where our PM and Team launched/declared an action plan having several measures to accelerate scale-up of start-ups.
Biathlon can be a good starting point for next level challenges such as Triathlon, which are getting popular in some Indian cities also. New organizing team of this Republic Day Biathlon lead by Group on Competitiveness (GoC) member Sneha Bhat has focused on quality measurements. Here are quick highlights of IITB Republic Day Biathlon 2016:
• Quality biathloners; more than 95 % participants successfully completed the biathlon, perhaps the highest percentage in IITB biathlons
• Increasing proportion of women, almost reaching 1/3
• Mayanka challenged men by competing in their category, which is much longer distance then women category
• Sustaining participants, some have started practicing
• Participation by several serious long distance players, who have already completed half marathons
• Better recording of time, thanks to efforts by Sneha & team
• Increasing contributions from SJMSOM on multiple dimensions
o Max. no. of staff participation (incl. first time entry by Dhaval and Pradeep)
o Repeat participation of ladies team
• Quick tips for beginners from accomplished achievers such as Sreenath and Anup Bali-a sports leader of SJMSOM who have already completed two Mumbai Full Marathons in less than two years of his stay on campus.

Table:   Leading participants in each category

Group behind Republic Day Biathlon 2016

Group behind Republic Day Biathlon 2016

Thank you volunteers for your contributions for improving quality in this event.

More pictures related to the R-Day Biathlon16 are shared  here.

We acknowledge cooperation from members of SJMSOM sports club SPIKE, led by Manmohan Singh. We thank Dr. Reddy Coach, in-charge Gymkhana, and IITB sports leaders Nihal, Sukhada and others for their help and sustained cooperation with IITB Biathlon. The event provided an opportunity for budding biathloners to meet, interact and learn from some accomplished enduros.

With signs of quality improvements, we are looking forward to an exciting 2016—the Olympic year—for friends who practice regularly.

Keep up on practice as more challenging events such as IITB Run (including Half Marathon), Swimming Gala and Swimathon await you on campus. Those very keen on next level challenges, feel free to talk to us at GoC, a unique greener group identifying potential champions of enduring competitiveness. Please do revisit this and other posts to know about opportunities for competing at conferences, journals and internship openings in specific areas: e.g.

  • Upcoming Conference:Technology Management and Competitiveness
  • Journal: International journal of Global Business and Competitiveness  (IJGBC)

Goodbye 2015: A Memorable Year in Many Respects

The year 2015 was memorable in many respects. The most important may perhaps be the efforts and achievements of young members of the Group on Competitiveness (GoC). Also Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management (SJMSOM), IIT Bombay completed 2 decades—quite a remarkable journey of childhood to start emerging as a leading research-based management school of India. We have started a major experiment of Executive MBA (EMBA) in cooperation with Washington University in St. Louis in 2015.

The Group on Competitiveness (GoC) completed half a decade at IIT Bombay.  It is quite a short time, but thanks to its energetic members, the group has started contributing to differentiation of SJMSOM, IITB.  Here is just a glimpse of some achievements to celebrate and build on:

  • 2nd course on competitiveness was launched and benefited more than 70 students; 2 competitiveness courses were offered in a calendar year, perhaps 1st time for any IIT or even IIM or any institution in India
  • GoC Alumni (from IITB) have started landing in Japan
  • Sundar represented us at major conference and paper development workshops (PDWs) of AIB, the leading academy of international business (IB) that came first time to India in more than 5 decades:

AIB 2015

  • Sujata presented her work at conference of Strategic Management Forum (SMF), leading strategy focused society of India
  • Beginner GoC associates are getting trained at basics of knowledge-creation and sharing (KCS); Rahul, Deepa and Lalit cooperated to publish their first journal paper
  • Enduro associates are climbing steps; e.g. Pranusha’s first journal paper got > 200 reads; her next knowledge artefact may compete at a C-level competitiveness journal
  • Thanks to all associates, we crossed 600 citations since 2010 (as compared to less than 200 in earlier 12 years; a kind of a 5X) (Source: Scholar, 25 Dec. 2015).
  • New associates have started getting on track early on: e.g. Sneha completed her first biathlon and a conference paper in the first sem.
  • With quantity part being taken care of by younger associates, mature associates will start focusing on quality

We are excited about 2016. We hope to see papers reaching many more people; more energetic engineers exploring competitiveness course and even industry leaders getting taste of knowledge emerging from India’s leading group on competitiveness. Due to hard work done by us to lay foundations in the first half of the decade, we feel confident of taking the group forward to next heights in the second half.

We plan to build-on systematically to take SJMSOM, IITB in to top ranks in MoT and competitiveness,  and related areas such as Strategy, Internation Business,…

GoC members wish you a healthy, more energetic and challenging year 2016. Let’s cooperate on shared values such as hard work, diligence and commitment to quality. I urge you to at least have a glimpse of a beautiful book by the great former president of India late Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam with Arun Tiwari—Transcendence: My Spiritual Experiences…—from which I borrow a quote:

            The most powerful force on this planet is human cooperation

You may directly post comments on this post or Email to with sub: Comment on blog.

New Opportunities in 2015

2014 was a remarkable year in many respects. On the macro front, the masses in India tried to overcome limitations of the democratic system in India to give a clear mandate for a stable and energetic government at the center. With initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, India will break-out of decades of stagnation in industries (such as manufacturing) to create jobs for capable youth and start addressing imbalances (e.g. on trade; for a glimpse of competitiveness impact of such balances, please refer to the Chapter in International Competitiveness).


At the local level, we had an enjoyable year preparing for next level challenges.  We could try some experiments, and capable learners of competitiveness started testing heights.  Here is just a glimpse of events at IITB, experiments, initiatives and achievements of members.

  • IITB hosted the 50th Inter-IIT sports meet and also secured top ranks in women (student as well as staff) and men (staff). The achievements are built on years of efforts, and initiatives in last few months
  • SJMSOM hosted first program on “MOT and Competitiveness”
  • Alumni of the competitiveness course have achieved new heights: e.g.
    • Pranusha won Dewang Mehta Award & cash prize of Rs. 1.25 lakhs & many other competitions (see other part of blog)
  • Two alumni have secured placement in leading Japanese firms such as NTT and Nomura; plan to land in Japan in 2015
  • Our SJMSOM Ph.D. students have started working in Japan
  • An associate represented SJMSOM, IITB at leading MoT conference, PICMET 2014 in Japan. Glimpse of work can be seen at scopus.
  • I was invited to give keynote as “Doctoral Consortia” at an international conference at IIT Roorkee. Could address more than 100 researchers.
  • Participated in paper development workshop at IIMB
  • Member of our “Strategy and Competitiveness Lab” defended Ph.D. on critical topic of “Technological Competitiveness”. Another student defended thesis on IPR; altogether 15 students have already completed projects and defended Ph.D. thesis. Most of them are contributing to competitiveness of their firms/institutes in dynamic positions such as VP.
  • Work by members of “Group on Competitiveness” is getting shared and cited on researchgate, scopus, scholar
  • + + many more, such as increasing number of our students participating in marathon, swimmathon and higher levels

For keynote address at Doctoral Consortium at 18th International Conference at IIT Roorkee with Professors Ramesh, Rangnekar, Sushil and Prakash


We have plans for some exciting projects in 2015.  Illustrative ones are:

  • Encouraged by achievements of competitiveness learners (highlighted at different places in blogs or scholar) new course “MGT679 Competitiveness for Sustainable Enterprises” (available as institute elective in slot 6; Wed. & Fri. – 11:00-12:30; Venue: LT303) will be piloted for the first time at IITB.  Burning issues of competitiveness, sustainability and climate change will be addressed in this interesting course.  Small group interactive course will provide opportunities for capable and innovative groups to compete at different levels to learn.  Examples of levels where they can participate & learn are:
    • Local levels in IITB/ Mumbai:
    • Regional level: in Western India such as IIMA/Pune
    • 15th Global Conference that may come to India
  • It is ideal for learners who have done some course in competitiveness, but we may consider capable and healthy students keen on learning and challenges
  • Unique workshop on “Internationalization and Competitiveness” for professionals keen on climbing heights
  • Members and groups will practice to participate in local events incl. Half Marathons
  • + + more as the year evolves

Follow our blog to get updates on activities, project openings and other opportunities.

India-Japan Cooperative Seminar at IITB: Glimpse of Learning

India-Japan Relations: Need for Young Leaders

The IITB Group on Competitiveness, SJMSOM & Japanese Language Learners Group at IITB cooperated to organize an interactive seminar on above topic on Oct. 9, 2013.  For the seminar we were lucky to have a veteran such as Mr. Sanjeev Sinha, President, Sun and Sands Group, Tokyo.  In addition, we had Shri Ulhas Acharya, a professional with more than two decades of experiences in Japan. The interactive seminar was liked very much by the participants. Details of contents may be made available later.  Here is just a glimpse of key learning:

  • India-Japan cooperation is entering new phase
  • Currently contribution of learners from China is massive, as compared to that number of students from India is less than 1000 (very optimistic estimate, in 2013)
  • Unique needs of Japanese can be made an opportunity for capable IITians to explore Japan
  • Opportunities are there, but preparation and language (at least basic to start with) skills are needed
Mr. Sanjeev Sinha, President, Sun and Sands Group, Tokyo

Mr. Sanjeev Sinha, President, Sun and Sands Group, Tokyo

Pl. visit this space and download from links to know more.

धन्यवाद। फ़िर मिलेंगे। また あとで

New Phase in India-Japan cooperation: A Starter

The tsunami created by select firms and industries in the USA engulfed several countries in Europe and other parts of the world.  While not hitting negatives in India, growth was severely affected.  As several parts of world face stagnation, a dynamic Asia provides the best opportunity for India to catch-up on growth.  Western Asia has been a major focus for India for people and trade exchanges. Now the manufacturing hub and technologically leading East Asia deserves equal attention.

Among East Asian countries, natural synergies are stronger, with some having shared values such as democracy.  An excellent role model of sustainable development in a large country—Japan—has rich historical and recent relations with India (Momaya, 2008).  Centuries old exchanges (e.g. Buddhism) have been reviving through more than 60 years of diplomatic relations in short post- independence history of India. The high importance the two countries assign to each other is reflected in India-Japan Global Strategic Partnership (initiated in early 2000s).   India can complement through intellectual youth to Japan-related technology and capital flow worldwide.

             Having been working on India-Japan cooperation for decades, we have been sowing seeds of cooperation for aspiring and capable youth.  Several initiatives were experimented at IIT Delhi and new ideas are being evolved at the SJM School of Management, IIT Bombay.  Pl. visit this space to know more.

धन्यवाद। फ़िर मिलेंगे। また あとで