Teamwork has paid off, says IIT Madras chief on retaining top NIRF ranking

It was quite easy to reach the top, but difficult to maintain it, and the recognition has given IIT-M a lot more confidence and motivation to work much harder: Professor Kamakoti

Collective effort, continuous assessment and improvement strategies were the key factors behind the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras retaining the top position in the National Institutional Ranking Framework, the premier institute’s Director V Kamakoti said here on Monday.

It was quite easy to reach the top, but difficult to maintain it, and the recognition has given IIT-M a lot more confidence and motivation to work much harder, Prof Kamakoti said.

Speaking to PTI exclusively, he said though there was satisfaction over the accomplishment, a lot more needs to be done in areas including innovation, research and teaching. “That we as faculty, students, staff, the alumni, industry partners, Union Ministry of Education and our Tamil Nadu State government, all of us have contributed in a very cohesive manner to reach this level.” IIT-M retained the top spot among institutes in the country for the fifth consecutive year, according to the Union Ministry of Education’s National Institutional Ranking Framework.

Several parameters are important with regard to the NIRF rankings, and in order to excel, a single factor alone cannot be decisive. “…the faculty sector alone cannot be that parameter, it is a collective effort. That collective, cohesive effort is what has given us this laurel. We are confident that we can work much harder and do much more in the service to our nation,” the director said.

The first time IIT-M went up to the first position in engineering category, the institute started “introspecting on what gave us this success” and areas that warranted improvement.

“We have a very dedicated team which looks into every parameter and finds out where we are lacking, where we need to improve. Bi-monthly we have a correction of the actions so that we are maintaining that standard,” he explained.

The NIRF framework has been immensely useful to the institute to “tell us where we stand and where we are going down in something”. Consequent improvement initiatives has led to a lot of benefits to the institution, he said.

Be it governance, the way the IIT-M has been proposing different types of projects, or the implementation of plan of action and in the institute’s every step, the framework provided good guidance, he said. “That is helping us retain this top position,” he added.

“IIT Madras is a great place for you to come and study. We have a wonderful campus. We have very interesting courses. It is not just computer science or the top disciplines which everybody wants to do. We have a lot of interdisciplinary courses. We offer a wide variety of education and it is a very diverse campus. I am sure students will love being on campus,” the director said.

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