A Year in India

Workspace Anecdote
September 18, 2008, 1:03 pm
Filed under: Culture | Tags: , ,

Above, the AIF/DE Bangalore office and the lovely view from it.

During orientation, Sridar Iyengar, an AIF Board Member, spoke to us about “Indian” ways of thinking and, in particular, of coming to conclusions.  If information is presented to two Indians, he said, they might think it through using two different approaches, even if they end up drawing the same conclusion.  What’s important, then, is the process of coming to the conclusion.  Equally important is openness in accepting others’ processes, even if they are wildly different than your own.

My very first day of work, I came to understand Sridar’s point more tangibly.  One of my coworkers told me about a document that the Indian government published in 2006.  The document spells out new, innovative ways in which teachers should build their curriculums.  My immediate question was whether the document is actually implemented in Bangalore’s government schools.  My coworker looked at me, smiled, and said, “Why don’t you read the document and then decide for yourself when you’re working in the schools?”

I look forward to having a conversation on this subject with my coworker a few months down the line.


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