The Department of Economics

 

A Brief History of the Department

The Department of Economics is as old as the College itself, as the College began functioning with Group III of the Intermediate Course. The strength of the Intermediate batch was 125.Prof. Krishna Iyer was the founder member of the Department. The first Principal of the College Rev. Mathew Purackal was also a member of the Department. The Department became full-fledged with the introduction of BA Course in Economics in 1934. Under the imitative of Prof. P Krishna Iyer, St. Berchmans College became the first college to get affiliation for MA Economics in 1957. Professors O C Varghese, L M Pylee, C Z Scaria, K K Francis etc., gave leadership to the department. As a token of the department’s gratitude to Prof. C Z Scaria, Prof. C Z Scaria Shashtabdyapoorthy Memorial Lecture was instituted in 1998. In 1992, the Department instituted Prof. K K Francis Memorial Lecture to honour the memory of Prof. K K Francis. These lecturers are held every year without fail.

 

The Department celebrated the Golden Jubilee of the commencement of the Post Graduate Programme on 12 October 2006. Sri. Jayaram Ramesh, Hon. Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry was the chief guest of honour on the occasion. In 2010, the Department of Economics has been granted recognition as an approved Research Centre of the Mahatma Gandhi University. The formal inauguration of the Research Centre was held on 15th March 2010 and Dr. U R Anandamoorthy, the former Vice Chancellor of the Mahatma Gandhi University was the chief guest of the function. There are eight permanent teachers and four guest lecturers in the department. At present, Prof. T K Thomas is the Head of the Department. The former Principal Rev. Fr. Tom Kunnumpuram and the present Principal Rev. Dr. Tomy Padinjareveettil are members of the Department of Economics.

 

B.A Economics

The first degree course in Humanities was started in 1934, when affiliation was granted by the Madras University. In 1939, the degree course was affiliated to University of Travancore. The sanctioned strength is 60 and the subsidiary subjects offered for the degree course are Indian History, Political Science and Sociology. From 2009 onwards the B A Programme in Economics follows the Choice Based Credit and Semester System and the students have the opportunity to choose one open course which is interdisciplinary in nature.

 

M A Economics

The post-graduate course in Economics was started in 1957. St. Berchmans

had the unique distinction in starting the first post-graduate course in Economics among the private colleges in Kerala. With the induction of the eminent professors like Prof. C.Z Scaria, Prof.T. V. Abraham. Prof. K K Francis, Prof. C O Abraham and Prof. Thomas Kanayamplackal, M A degree course in Economics got recognition as the best taught course in the State. The course which started with student strength of fifteen now admits twenty five students.

 

Econometrics and Management Papers as Optional Set of Papers for M A Economics

The University of Kerala sanctioned an additional set of optional for M A degree course in 1982, comprising Classical Political Economy, Political Economy of Socialism and Socialist Economic System. In addition to the optional papers, International Economics, Money and Financial Institutions and Public Finance were also offered.

 

A new restructured syllabus for M A Economics was implemented in 2001 and we introduced Econometrics as an optional set of papers. Our Department is the first and the only one Department to offer this newly introduced optional for M A in Mahatma Gandhi University. This set of optional comprises of Mathematical Economics, Econometrics and Operational Research. The other set of optional offered includes Personal Management, Business Management and Marketing Management.

 

The syllabus of M A Economics is being revised with the introduction of new optional such as Health Economics. The revised syllabi will be followed from the next academic years onwards. (2012). The Department of Economics is proud to have organized the workshop for the restructuring of the syllabus.

 

Add On Courses

Tourism and Hotel Management

The UGC has sanctioned a new Add-on Course in Tourism and Hotel Management to our Department and we conducted this Certificate Course for Degree students of our college from 2005 onwards. The course is discontinued in 2009 as the IGNOU centre of the College started a course on Tourism.

Certificate Course in Human Rights

A short term Certificate Course in Human Rights sponsored by the UGC is started in the Department. Anybody interested in the subject can join the course. The first batch of the course is going on and 25 students from various disciplines joined the course.  The next batch will commence in May 2012. A library containing books related to Human Rights is being setup in the department.

 

Enhancement of Learning Resources

We have a well-equipped Central Library with 5893 books and 11 Journals in the Economics Department stack. Besides, there is a separate Library with 750 books and 4 journals adjacent to the Department, mainly to help the post-graduate students in completing their project work. In the last five years, the Department introduced Internet facility with four computer terminals, accessible both to the faculty members and students. There is a separate Computer Lab with 15 Computers with Internet facility to help students in their studies and project work.

 

Other learning resources include an LCD Projector and a digital camera. We collaborate with other higher centers of Learning like Centre for Development Studies, Trivandrum, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Institute of Small Enterprises Development Kochi, and they regularly supply their working papers to the Department Library. Our students also make frequent visits to these centers to collect materials for their MA project works. The Department is thankful to late Dr. K N Raj, eminent economist and Sri. Balaharihar, a distinguished alumnus of the department for donating their valuable books to the department library.

 

Innovations in Teaching

Apart from the conventional lecture methods, we have moved into classes with sophisticated audio-video system. A separate well equipped lecture hall with LCD Facility is set up with the UGC CPE Fund and teachers are given special training to equip themselves with the modern methods of teaching. Besides we also have undertaken various student centered programmes like field survey training, preparation of project works, organizing group discussions, and assignments etc. Internet facility is used by the faculty members and students to update their resources of learning. Extension lecturers by resource persons from other Colleges and Universities are also arranged for both the faculty and students.

 

Mentoring System and Counseling

To improve the academic standard of students we have introduced the mentoring system. For every 25 students a mentor is assigned and he gives personal guidance to these students. Each mentor keeps a personal file of these students and corrects them to improve the academic standards. All the students are also sending to counseling, since we have a Counseling Centre with well qualified councilors. Counseling and mentoring system has helped a lot in identifying the student problems, both personal and academic.

 

Participation in Academic and Extension Activities

Teachers actively participate in academic and administrative programmes of our college and University. The details of teacher’s participation can be viewed in the link Our Staff

 

Research Projects

Details of the Research Projects undertaken by the faculty members of the Department for the last five years.

 

Title of the project

Sponsoring Agency

Fund Allotted (Rs)

Name of the Coordinator

Wetland Agriculture in Kerala

Centre for Technology and Development, Trivandrum

30000

Prof. L Unnikrishnan

The Role of Grassroots NGOs in Stimulating Income Generation Among Vulnerable Groups in Kerala

IVO, Development Research Institute, Netherlands

50000

Dr. M S James

Evaluation of Educational Institutions under SC/ST Dept.

SC/ST Department, Govt. of Kerala

700000

Fr. Tom Kunnumpuram

Emergence of Financial Markets in Kerala

KRPLD

(KRP, CDS, Trivandrum)

10000

Dr. M P Philip

Formation of the Gandhian Study Centre

UGC

700000

Dr. Jose Mathew

NEP and its impact on the Health of the Marginalized in Kerala

UGC

70000

Prof. Mathew J Mattam

                                     

Collaboration with other Universities

A joint research project was undertaken by the Department in collaboration with the Development Research Institute, Tilberg University, Netherlands, Department of Applied Economics, Cochin University of Science and Techonology and Kuttanadu Vikasana Samithi, an NGO in Kuttanadu taluk of Alleppy Dt. An amount of Rs. 50000/ was sanctioned by the Development Research Institute to conduct a survey at Kuttanadu about the role of grassroots NGOs in stimulating income generation among vulnerable groups in Kerala. Both the students of BA and MA actively participated in the project study.

 

Research by Faculty

Name

Area of Research

Title of Thesis

Status

Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam

Freedom movement

Freedom Movement in Kerala

Awarded 1994                                      

 

Dr. Jose Mathew

Gandhian Economics

Development policies: A Gandhian Critique

Awarded 2001

 

Dr. M P Philip

Financial Economics

Trends in Financial Intermediation in Kerala

Awarded 2007

Fr. Dr. Tomy Padinjareveettil

Dalit Politics

Political Empowerment of Dalits in Kerala

Awarded 2011

Prof. Renji Mathew  (M Phil)

Transport Economics

Trends and Patterns of  Transport Development in Kerala

Awarded 2007

Prof. Joseph Kurian

Consumption Pattern

Consumption Pattern-Kerala

Progressing

Prof. Mathew J Mattam (on FIP Leave)

Health Economics

Globalization and its Impact on Health Aspects of BPL Families

Progressing

 

Participation in National and International Seminars and Workshops

Teachers regularly participate in the national and international seminars and workshops to update their knowledge. The details of teacher’s participation in seminars given in the link our staff

 

Participation in Academic and Extension Activities

Teachers in the Department actively participate in academic, administrative and extension programmes of the department, college and university. The details of this can be viewed in the link our staff

 

Participation in Refresher/Orientation Courses

The following teachers have participated in Refresher/Orientation Courses as stated below:-

Sl. No

Name

Course and Topic

Year

Institution

1

Dr. M P Philip

R C in Economics

2007

Academic Staff College, JNU, Delhi

2

Prof. Mathew J Mattam

R C  in Economics

2008

Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam

3

Prof. Mathew J Mattam

R C  in Economics

2010

Kerala University, Trivandrum

           

Publications by the Faculty

Details of the Publications by the faulty are given in the following table:-

Sl. No

Name

Title

Status

Journal/Book

Year

1

Dr. Jose Mathew

An Alternative to the Modern Culture

Published

Jeeva Dhara

2010

2.

Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam

Study of the Occupational Stress among Professional College Teachers

Published

Gyan Management

2010

3.

Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam

Examining the Relationship between organizational and Individual Factors and Job Satisfaction

Published

Review of Social Sciences

2010

4.

Dr. M P Philip

Bank Deposits in Kerala: Recent Trends

Published

S B Academic Review

2012

 

 

National Seminars and Workshops organized by the Department

The Department organized three National Seminars since 2008.  The details are given below:

Year

Title

Sponsoring Agency

Co-ordinator

2008

Human Rights: Theory and praxis

UGC

Prof. Renji Mathew

2009

Global Economic Crisis-Gandhian Perspective

UGC

Dr. Jose Mathew

2010

Multinationals, Life Styles, Climate Change and Economic Crisis

UGC

Dr. Jose Mathew

2012

P G Syllabus Restructuring Workshop

M G University

Dr. M P Philip

 

Memorial Lectures

The Department conducts two memorial lectures in honour of two of its distinguished former teachers-Prof. K K Francis and Prof. C Z Scaria

Prof. K K Francis Memorial Lecture

Year

Resource Person

Topic

1992

Dr. K Ramachandran Nair

 

1993

Sri. P J Joseph MLA

 

1994

Prof. C Z Scaria

 

1995

Sri. Dominic Joseph IRS

 

1996

Sri. James Joseph IAAS

 

1997

Sri. George Joseph IPS

 

1998

Dr. C R Soman

 

1999

Dr. K Babu Joseph

 

2000

Dr. M P Mathai

 

2001

Sri. C V Ananda Bose IAS

 

2002

Jus. K T Thomas

 

2003

Dr. K N Harilal

 

2004

Prof. C O Abraham

 

2005

Dr. P M Mathew

 

2006

Dr. A V Jose ILO

Strategies to Overcome Labour Issues

2007

Sri. S John

Emerging Trends in Indian Banking

2008

Dr. Scaria Zachariah

Interdisciplinary Studies: Possibilities in Social Sciences

2009

Dr. K J Joseph

ASEAN-Indian Free Trade Agreement

2010

Dr. Sunil Mani

Indian and Global Economy

 

 

Prof. C Z Scaria Memorial Lecture

Year

Resource Person

Topic

1988

Dr. I S Gulati

 

1989

Dr. K C Shankara Narayanan

 

1990

Dr. Chiranjib Sen

 

1991

Dr. P R Gopinathan Nair

 

1992

Prof. K J Oommen

 

1993

Sri. T N Jayachandran IAS

 

1994

Sri. K M Mani MLA

 

1995

Dr. P K Michel Tharakan

 

1996

Dr. Olle Tornquist

 

1997

Dr. Cyriac Thomas

 

1998

Dr. Achin Chakrabarty

 

1999

Dr. Gehrad De Groot

 

2000

Dr. M A Oommen

 

2001

Dr. K C Zachariah

 

2002

Dr. Babu Paul IAS

 

2003

Dr. Alwin B Prakash

 

2004

Mar Joseph Powathil

 

2005

Dr. B Ikbal

 

2006

Sri.  K J Alphonse MLA

Impact of Globalization on Kerala Economy

2007

Dr. M G S Narayanan

Kerala’s Devt: Experience: A Critical Evaluation

2008

Sri. T P Srinivasan IFS

Indo-US Nuclear Treaty: Issues and Challenges

2009

Dr. John Kurian

Indian Economic Recovery Amidst Global Slowdown

2010

Dr. P M Rajan Gurukkal

Development: Critical Political Economy Perspective

 

Faculty Improvement Programme

During the last few years, eight members of the Department availed FIP for completing M Phil/PhD. Dr. M S James, Dr. Jacob Mathew, Dr. Jose Mathew and Dr. M P Philip were awarded Ph D. Rev. Fr. Tomy Padinjareveettil, now principal of the college is awarded Ph D Political Science for his study on Dalit Empowerment.  Sri. Renji Mathew completed M Phil. Professors L Unnikrishnan, Joseph Kurian, Mathew J Mattam and are about to complete their PhD. Prof. Mathew J Mattam is on FIP leave for the completion of his research. Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam is awarded a second Doctoral Degree in Management Studies.

 

Faculty in the University Bodies

Prof. Renji Mathew

Member, UG Board of Studies, History, Mahatma Gandhi University

Dr. M P Philip

Member, PG Board of Studies, Economics, Mahatma Gandhi University

           

Awards and Honours

Prof. Renji Mathew, former Programme Offcer, National Service Scheme of the College was selected the Best NSS Programme Officer of the Mahatma Gandhi University in 2009.

Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam authored a book titled Leadership and Organizational Climate in 2009 (ISBN No. 978-81-903895-4-9

 

Students Profile

Earlier students from all over the state of Kerala joined the department for B A and M A Courses. But recently the catchment area of the students is restricted to the districts of Kottayam, Alleppey and Pathanamthitta. In fact this is reflected in the quality of our students and results. Our students hail from different socio-economic backgrounds.  The socially background category including OBC constitutes about 30 percent. Majority of the students come from rural background.

 

To improve the academic standard of students we have introduced the mentoring system. For every twenty five students a mentor is assigned and he gives personal guidance to these students. Each mentor keeps a personal file of these students and corrects him to improve the academic standards.  All the students are also sending to counseling, since we have a counseling centre with well qualified counselors.  Counseling mentoring system had helped a lot in identifying the student’s problem, both academic and personal.

 

Alumni Association

We maintain close contact with the alumni of the Department and annual meetings of the same are held in the month of April every year. This year as the college celebrates its ninetieth birthday, the department organized its alumni meet on 31 December 2011. More than one hundred and fifty old students attended the meeting. We are proud to mention that the present president of the Economics Alumni Association is Mr. Oommen Chandy, hon. Chief Minister of the State. We have a long list of our old students well placed in civil service, government bodies, political leadership, private and public firms, educational institutions and religious leadership.  The newly consecrated Cardinal of the Cyro Malabar Church, Mar George Alancherry is an alumnus of the Department. Mrs. Balahariharan, a Post Graduate student of Economics during 1967-68 has donated about 500 books ad Rs. 50000/- towards equipping the department library. The department is proud of its alumni and we are happy to mention a few of them.

           

Mr. Oommen Chandy                              Hon. Chief Ministger of Kerala

Mar George Alancherry                           Cardinal of the Cyro Malabar Church

Mar Joseph Powathi                                 Arch Bishop Changanacherry

Mar George Kocherry                              Bishop of Ghana and Togo

M S Mani                                                 IAS, Central Service

Madhavan Nair                                        IAS, Central Service

Joseph Mathew                                        IES, Planning Board

Augustine Peter                                       IES, Planning Board

Siby Mathews                                          IPS, Kerala Police

K C Johney                                              IRS, Customs

Dr. A V Jose                                            Economist, ILO

Paul Joseph                                              IES, Ministry of Agriculture

Saju K Srendran                                       Indian Economic Service 2006

Sindhu                                                      Indian Economic Service 2009

 

Achievements of the Department   

Ø   The Department has been elevated to the status of approved Research Centre of the Mahatma Gandhi University

Ø   Introduction of Econometrics Group as an optional for M A

Ø   Organization of National Seminars on relevant issues

Ø   One of our faculty Prof. Renji Mathew received the Best Programme Officer Award of the National Service Scheme of the Mahatma Gandhi University for the year 2009

Ø   Sanction to start Certificate Course in Human Rights sponsored by the UGC

Ø   FIP awarded to one faculty member

Ø   Two of our alumni qualified the Indian Economic Service Examinations recently

Ø   Two faculty members are in the University Board of Studies

Ø   Publication of a book and a second Doctoral Degree by one of our faculty, Dr. Joseph Sebastian Thekkedam

Ø   Two Memorial Lectures every year without fail since their inception

 

 

 

 

 

 



Contact Details

Head of the Department

Mr. Unnikrishnan. L

 

Telephone (Office)

9349426134

 

Email

lunnikrishnan@rediffmail.com