Showing posts from July, 2016

Cost of planning failure in mega projects

Recently the Union Cabinet, Govt. of India has approved a revised cost estimate  (see Table-1 below) for all eight new IITs which were setup in the academic years 2008-2009. Originally projected/planned cost of setting up these 8 institutes of national importance was Rs. 6080 Cr. It was expected that these institutes would be fully functional from their respective independent campuses within about five years from starting. None of these newly setup eight IITs has been able to meet the originally planned cost and timelines for setting up needed infrastructure and start operating from the new campuses. Almost eight years into their inception, there are still some who are yet to move to their new campuses. Meanwhile, the cost of completing the work has risen by Rs. 7910 Cr to Rs. 13990 Cr as you can see from MHRD's press release ! One could have done a lot of public good with this amount of taxpayer's money . Table-1 (Revised estimated cost of IITs setup in 2008-09)  Sou

Educating citizens about healthcare to reduce spending on healthcare services

Implications of such rising healthcare costs are serious for families who bear entire costs of healthcare from their own pocket. According to a WHO report , in India citizens pay more than 80% of their healthcare costs "out-of-pocket". In a country like ours where most of the population do not have any safety net for covering their emergency healthcare expenditures, large payouts on such situations affects other aspects of citizens' lives, often driving them into huge debts. Particularly, the number of visits to emergency healthcare providers has increased worldwide over the past several years (see Fig. 1). Fig. 1 (source In fact, very recently few of my own close relatives have ended up incurring big expenses for handling medical emergencies. In one of these cases the situation, I believe, could have been avoided had my relatives been more diligent and more aware about managing their healthcare issues. I know several su

University infrastructure building | Some experiences part 1

For past more than one year I have been associated with my university's infrastructure building project. Over that period I have got opportunities to observe and interact with variety of agencies both private and government run. My university is funded by MHRD . Almost all the work that has been carried out for us has been through CPWD .  Though the following may be quite "common-sense" kind of points, sometimes we pay the price of having overlooked them in our planning and execution. These points are mainly concerning physical infrastructure creation. About project initiation There is no "standard template" which you can use to start a greenfield project for creating infrastructure of a university. I believe that each university/institution has a character unique to itself and also has a unique vision based on its strengths which at the beginning might be few in number. That said, from planning and implementation standpoint, there will always be some