Study on Indian Malls sends Dr. Harvinder S. all the way to his American Cousins

Dr. Harvinder Singh is back to IMT Ghaziabad after a sojourn at New York. One of the few people in India to conduct research on the business dimensions of Malls, Dr. Harvinder, who is an Associate Professor in Marketing at IMT Ghaziabad......
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Aug. 28, 2012 - PRLog -- Dr. Harvinder Singh is back to IMT Ghaziabad after a sojourn at New York. One of the few people  in India to conduct research on the business dimensions of Malls, Dr. Harvinder, who is an Associate Professor in Marketing at IMT Ghaziabad, had recently authored a critically acclaimed Paper titled ‘My American Cousin : A Comparison Between Indian and US Malls’. The Paper was a detailed study mapping the differences between US and Indian shopping malls in terms of location, size, management, financing, tenant-mix, etc. Greatly impressed by the depth and expanse of his research, he was invited to present a paper at the 4th Annual American Business Research Conference at New York, jointly organised by World Business Institute and Adelphi University.

“The concept of a mall image is fairly established and well-researched in the US and Europe, but nobody has carried out such a study for  Indian shopping malls. It is the first study of its kind in India.The American Business Research Conference in New York was on “Research for Change”. Fifty papers by researchers from two dozen nations across the globe were presented.  My paper was an extension of my doctoral research on shopping malls. In the paper, I explored the anatomy of Brand Image for shopping malls in India.”

Dr. Harvinder feels that malls reflect the times that we live in. “One look at a mall and you know what  the current trends are and how people think these days. Just looking at a big and successful mall elsewhere in the world and copy-pasting it in India doesn’t work. Even the structure of a mall tells you a story. For instance, multiplexes and food-courts were unheard of in India 14 years ago, when Ansal Plaza was constructed in Delhi. If the mall wishes to accommodate a multiplex now, it may be almost impossible to do so. Phased redevelopment and complete redevelopment are two options but these again have their demerits.”

Dr. Harvinder, who has more than 13 years of teaching experience, has been associated with renowned institutes throughout his life as an academician. Over and above his teaching commitments at IMT Ghaziabad, he always makes it a point to share his immense knowledge of Marketing with the various organisations that he consults.

“Given the advertising clutter that we come across, I would bet on platforms that facilitate ‘one-to-one’ communication rather than ‘one–to-many’ communication. Social media qualifies this condition. However, it still has a long way to go as its proliferation depends on the proliferation of quality telecom and broadband services. Literacy is also an issue when it comes to the adoption of social media over a wider geographic territory and a larger customer base.”

Some of the prestigious appointments that Dr. Harvinder Singh has held include that of a Marketing and Sales trainer for Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) Ltd., Trainer in ‘Marketing for Entrepreneurs’ for Ministry of Defense, and Resource-person for cluster branding for SIDBI & TERI.

“The focus of all marketing decisions is the customer, and rural marketing is no exception. Successful rural companies keenly observe rural customers, find out their points of pain and pleasure, see how they can add value to their lives and come up with an offer. Imposing a typical urban product on to rural markets is a mistake but so is the attempt to be ‘over-innovative’ in cases where rural customers don’t radically differ from their urban counterparts. Rural distribution is indeed an area where a lot of innovation is required.”

“At IMT Ghaziabad, I’ve come across numerous enthusiastic and inquisitive students who’ve made me work harder. After two years at IMT Ghaziabad, I feel I’m a much better teacher now than when I started. On the research front, I’ve found a completely distraction-free environment here. Thanks to IMT Ghaziabad, I could compile and publish my text-book “Mall Management: Operating in Indian Retail Space.”

The book, published by Tata McGraw Hill, was released in May 2012, and has been widely read. Dr. Harvinder Singh finds his colleagues at IMT Ghaziabad a wonderful source of inspiration. He believes that IMT Ghaziabad is an automatic choice for anybody who is looking for an intellectually stimulating work environment and a challenging class-room environment.
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