Entrepreneurship is about ideas: Lord Meghnad Desai

By The CoolAge Reporter
From Buzz@Bangalore, Bangalore
Posted Sep 12th 2012 12:32AM

BITS, Pilani K. K. Birla - Goa Campus witnessed an interactive session with the world renowned economist, author and British Labor Life Peer- Lord Meghnad Desai.

His intense session turned out to be really superb. Let's have a look at Lord Meghnad Desai's interview conducted by the campus's very own Department of Journalism and Media Affairs!

This interview is a part of their latest BITS Herald Summer Issue which can be viewed at: http://www.scribd.com/doc/96737622/BITS-Herald-Summer-Issue-12

Q: What was your inspiration and prime motive behind join­ing the Labour Party?

A: Well, I was always for the Left wing view and the so­cialist view of 'changing the world for the better'. I wanted to improve the living conditions of ordinary people and try and provide for employment, low poverty, better welfare state and such social and democratic ideals. Even though I am much more pro-capitalist now, I still think those are good things to go for. But, it has to be done differently.

Q: BITS-Pilani has a unique dual degree system, wherein students pursue a Pure Science degree along with an Engineering degree. From the point of view of an Economics scholar, how valued is the one year where the Economics dualities students study pure Economics subjects?

A: It's very difficult to answer that question. It depends on what the individual wants to do. Probably, one year in a joint degree system is enough to earn an Economics degree. But to know how academics judge it, we need to know what the individual plans to do. One year spent in Economics would not allow you to do a gradu­ate course in Economics. Two years might be required. But, then again it depends on what you learn and how much you learn.

Q: We have a club called CEL, which stands for 'Centre for Entrepreneurial Leadership', which promotes Entrepreneurship. As of now, the world seems to be pro-social Entrepreneurship. Would you say it is a fad?

A: It will just come and go. Eventually, entrepreneurship is entrepreneurship and it means finding a gap in the market and filling it. Facebook is an entrepreneurial activity. Nobody knew there was a gap. But, it provided that gap. Entrepreneurship is about ideas. It is a mental activity with risk-taking. Paradoxically, al­though there is a lot more capitalism, people are shy to speak positively about it. They don't want to mention profit-making is a good thing. So they talk about social entrepreneurship.

Q: How do you feel that the research and academia scene in India has changed from your time?

A: There is much more research into academia now. But I feel far too much research is government-spon­sored. There aren't enough private-research foundations or funding, that are enough to sustain really good critical work. I feel most of the research centres are concentrated in Delhi, due to this reason.

Interview by Department of Journalism and Media Affairs, BITS, Pilani K. K. Birla - Goa Campus and submitted by Chintan Zalani

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