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Indian Institute of Management Bangalore

Strategic Management in Ports

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Ports have a key role in facilitating trade and playing a critical interface between marine-and-land based transportation. They are part of international supply chain networks, the effectiveness of which drives trade competitiveness. India has 12 major ports and about 200 non-major ports. India currently ranks 16th among maritime countries, with a coastline of about 7,500 km. Around 95 per cent of India's trade by volume and 70 per cent by value takes place through maritime transport, according to the Ministry of Shipping.

These Indian ports are expected to double their annual cargo handling in the next 5 years. Given the importance of the country’s ports to national economic growth, the government has been taking steps to boost the ports’ performance to world-class levels with speedy decision making processes and decentralization.

The Government of India has taken policy initiatives to enhance private investment in ports. New tariff guidelines have been introduced with greater flexibility to public-private partnership (PPP) operators to fix tariff based on market conditions. The security clearance guidelines for PPP bidders have been streamlined and new guidelines for leasing port lands have been announced. These measures have resulted in substantial investments in port projects during the last several years. Given the substantial investments being made in modernization and upgradation of the ports, development of multimodal transport, privatization of ports and the increased involvement of private players in port activities, there is a need to evolve strategic perspectives for project management in ports among the senior management for which an executive education course could be one of the essential vehicles. The Ministry of Shipping is aware that ports are taking up various capacity addition, mechanization and connectivity projects in their quest to achieve international standards.


Senior port managers are involved in the roles of coordination, piloting particular policies and decisions. They have much influence on decision making. They are responsible for effective liaisons with all government agencies, port authorities and shipping companies. They are also responsible for the planning, documentation and operations in port while maintaining the port functioning – its equipment, buildings and maintenance. They are also responsible for planning execution monitoring and commission of new projects and hence it is necessary to equip them with project management skills. This skill set enhancement would benefit the ministry and bring about greater efficacy and efficiency in government processes and systems as well.

Below is the list of broad topics and sub-topics to be covered in the programme:

  • Competitive Management in Ports
  • Issues in Project Management
  • Capital Investment Analysis
  • PPP in Infrastructure Projects
  • Leadership
  • Risk Management
  • Procurement Issues
  • Legal Aspects & Contracting
  • Environmental Issues
  • Change Management

Key benefits

The programme is designed for the integration of new management recruits with senior port functionaries. The programme will help the participants in effective project management. It will benefit the port officials to improve the efficacy of project formulation, implementation and monitoring and carry out the government’s vision forward.

Programme Objectives are as below:

  • To integrate the new Management recruits with senior port functionaries.
  • To offer rich learning experience, opportunity for discussions and strategic perspectives for effective project management in ports.
  • To improve project management in Ports in the context of multi modal transport and effective supply chain management with a focus on public private partnerships.


Raghuram has been Director, IIM Bangalore, since February 2017. Prior to taking over as Director of IIM Bangalore, he was Professor and Chairperson of the Public Systems Group at IIMA. He has been Dean (Faculty), IIMA, Vice-Chancellor of the Indian Maritime University and Indian Railways Chair Pr...
Professor V Ravi Anshuman’s research interests cover the areas of Market Microstructure, Infrastructure Financing, and Corporate Financial Management Issues in Emerging Markets. His publications have appeared in the Review of Financial Studies, Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Financial...


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