Jawaharlal Nehru Professor of Indian Business & Enterprise, Cambridge Judge Business School
Meeting CSaP’s Policy Fellows has been a wonderful way for me to learn from senior civil servants and share my learning with them. Scarcely a week seems to go by without my being invited to meet some fascinating and influential person from the UK government, Brussels, or the corporate sector.
There are four reasons why I have so enjoyed being part of the Programme. First, and most important, is the quality of the Fellows themselves: in terms of their background and experience and the questions they are grappling with. Talking to the Fellows, and hearing about their challenges, stimulates me to stretch my own thinking and helps me think of ways in which I can direct or modify my own research.
Second, I find that my own research and knowledge, when presented to the Fellows, suddenly come alive in a way that they do not when I discuss them with fellow academics. The practical yet strategic nature of the Fellows’ contexts helps me see how my own research may or may not apply to complex, real-world contexts that are also frequently in flux.
Third, through the Policy Fellows I frequently find out more about what my colleagues in other parts of the University are doing. Such serendipitous discoveries about complementary work to my own, in (say) Engineering or Computer Science, help me see my work in a wider academic context, in a world where most problems require interdisciplinary solutions.
Finally, the connections I have been able to make through the Fellows have helped me with my teaching and outreach activity. I frequently develop and deliver executive education programmes for senior Indian executives and civil servants, who often wish to meet and learn from their UK counterparts. CSaP and its network of influential Policy Fellows has helped with this important objective of taking UK and Western best practice to other parts of the world.
The excitement and insight I have experienced and the connections I have made through the Programme are truly remarkable. I believe strongly that the programme benefits not only the University, but also the UK, Europe and the world at large.