Postgraduate Programme in Rural Management (MBA-RM)                                  

The two-year full-time residential Program in Rural Management of XSRM is the second-oldest in the country. It has evolved in response to the demand    for professionals  with the knowledge and  expertise to work in rural communities and markets,  in businesses as well as  the development programs of  government and civil society organizations.Its unique feature is the dual competencies – in management and in development.The Program is designed to create professionals with the expertise to run business and development organizations, & the passion to use their capabilities for the betterment of rural communities. This unique program is proud of preparing committed and competent leaders who can analyse, reflect, plan and execute sustainable development strategies in rural areas.
Program Objectives

A variety of tasks are involved in developing sustainable rural businesses, markets and communities, and the RM graduates learn to be multi-dextrous.
The program therefore aims to achieve the following:
  • Engender the ability to analyse and solve complex problems in rural markets,
  • Equip students to support livelihood development and social change in rural areas,
  • Enable students to evolve alternative perspectives and paradigms for development,
  • Encourage students to plan, nurture and incubate social enterprises.
Over a period of two years, the students develop the competencies to analyse managerial and developmental problems in a holistic manner, and to seek, organize and present information for insightful, practical and innovative solutions. They learn to understand and work with rural communities to identify opportunities and develop financially, socially and ecologically sustainable initiatives that serve all stakeholders. The curriculum helps them decipher the complex and go beyond the obvious; the hallmarks of our graduates are discipline, versatility and creativity.
Program Structure
The MBA-RM Program comprises six kinds of learning segments carrying 110 credits, of which 78 credits are core requirements, and 32 credits are
elective, spread over six terms in two years. Learning segments include classroom-based courses as well as field, seminar and research segments, and carry credits ranging from 1.0 to 4.0. All courses and other components in the first year are compulsory (core). In the second year students select elective courses of their choice from the many offered, along with a few compulsory courses. Each credit includes 10 hours of classroom contact or its field equivalent, and an equal duration outside the classroom to be utilized for preparatory reading and assignments.

Classroom Learning: The conceptual and theoretical fundamentals of management and development are provided in the core classroom segments, as well as the analytical frameworks and tools which equip them to maximize their learning in the field segments. The core courses provide the essential understanding and skills in all the functional areas of management including Accounting, Economics, Finance, Organization Behaviour, Human Resources, Operations, Marketing, Strategy; also of development, such as Community Mobilization and Institution-building, Microplanning, Societal Analysis and Participatory Rural Appraisal, Development Program Management, Development Finance and Rural Project Financing, Microfinance, Gender, Governance and Social Entrepreneurship. These stand on foundational courses like Managerial Analysis and Communication, Economics and Research Methods. Elective courses offered from Term IV, provide advanced exposure in all the above areas and more, ranging from Agriculture Input and Output Marketing,
Consumer Behaviour and Transformational Leadership to Corporate Social Responsibility, Ecosystem Management, Disaster Management, Relief and Rehabilitation and Development Training. Unique Features of the Program


Rural Living and Learning Experience (RLLE) Segments:
RLLE is an integral pedagogical component of the MBA-RM and mandatory for all students. Animated by our conviction that students of the MBA-RM must have the willingness, capacity and drive to learn from the lives of people with whom they are going to work, is the main component of the RLLE. Students are attached to a development organization and stay in a village for forty five (45) days to understand village society, economy and polity in all its complexities, learn to appreciate the difficulties faced by communities and experience for themselves the wisdom and resilience with which households and communities order their lives.

Management Traineeship Segments: This mandatory segment focuses on the observation and study of organizations in operation, and for practical exposure. They comprise internship opportunities with reputed organizations working in the rural management domain, during the Summer Internship Program (SIP).

Seminar and Colloquium: This component includes the National Colloquium in Rural Management (NCRM) in the first year and the Development Ethics Seminar (DES) in the second year, both of which are core requirements. The NCRM features eminent speakers from the rural management field to discuss various aspects of the field’s development, contemporary issues and future directions. In the DES, students are sensitized to the ethical responsibilities of a development practitioner, the dilemmas which they are likely to confront, and ways to make principled choices and decisions.

Immersion Courses: This is a unique innovation to provide students with an exposure and understanding of topics which are still emergent and not fully explored in the regular courses. These are non-credited modules offered during the second year; students are required to take at least two of the modules offered. The modules are taught by thought leaders and professionals working in new areas in the industry and social sectors, and enable students to broaden their horizons, learn about the cutting-edge developments in their field and explore newer opportunities.

Focus Areas in the MBA-RM:
Rural Management graduates serve in a variety of organizational contexts, and are required to be competent in a number of substantive areas. The core segments are designed to enable all students to develop this multi-dexterity. In addition, the students can build specialized expertise in any of the rapidly growing areas in the domain, by selecting a combination of elective courses that enables concentrated attention on their focal area(s).

The following concentrations are offered in the MBA-RM:

  • Agribusiness and Rural Marketing,
  • Rural and Inclusive Finance,
  • Livelihoods and Development Management,
  • Social Entrepreneurship
Industry Interface and Practical Exposure: The MBA-RM students organize and conduct a number of events and activities, geared to develop their managerial and team-work capabilities and also increase their involvement with local communities and with industry segments. A flagship event is the Gramotsava, a weekend of rural and social marketing fairs organized in villages in the region.

Academic Calendar:
The MBA-RM academic year comprises three terms of approximately 12-14 weeks. The RLLE segment is part of Term II in the first year, and the SIP is scheduled for 8-10 weeks between terms III and IV. The weekly schedule typically has 16-20 sessions, which include classroom sessions and time for other segments such as the NCRM and the DES. The Gramotsava, Abhivyakti, RLLE Mela and some other co-curricular events are scheduled on working days, while Leadership Talks and Immersion courses are often organized over some weekends.

Degree:
The Xavier University awards the MBA in Rural Management Degree to students who successfully complete all curricular requirements equivalent to 110 credits, and fulfill other prescribed requirements of the MBA-RM Program. The Degree is awarded to qualifying students in the Annual Convocation, usually in the month of March.