MASTERS’ THESIS PRESENTATION AT THE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON HERITAGE MANAGEMENT EDUCATION
The International Conference on Heritage Management and Educational Practices witnessed along with the presentations of the external participants, the presentations of the thesis work of the first graduating batch of the Masters in Management Studies. The presentations were classified under the different themes of the conference and the students had already excelled with additional corrections post their final presentations. Students’ thesis presentations also received special mention in the concluding plenary sessions. The conference gave them a platform to showcase their work in front of a larger international audience which could open further prospects to them in future.
PRACTICUM EXPERIENCE PRESENTATIONS BY MASTERS’ STUDENTS
The Masters programme on Heritage Management requires each of its students to pursue a 10-12 weeks long compulsory practicum during the summer break between their first year and second year .This is an important part of the two years learning process. Masters 2016-18 cohort group pursued their practicum at organisations working in diverse areas related to heritage.
- Aayushi Maheshwari, pursued her Practicum with UNESCO, New Delhi and was stationed at Darjeeling Himalayan Railways site office. She contributed to the preparation of Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan and also reflected the existing gap between different stakeholders through consultations and mapping.
- Bansari Ladia, assisted Centre for Environment Education for the designing Heritage Walk for of one of the areas in Old City of Ahmedabad. Her reflections came in the form of bridging a gap between cultural and natural elements through reinterpreting the narratives.
- Gourav Mandloi, with his interest to work with the Craft sector did his practicum with Banglanatak.com in Kolkata. He contributed to the organisation by collecting narratives about different crafts from the rural areas of Bengal. He aims to take ahead his learning from this experience into his thesis on understanding the value chain associated with the crafts sector in India.
- Kavin Shah, critically examined the area of Marketing in Heritage. He was associated with The House of MG, Ahmedabad and understood the organisation structure through his practicum.
- Renu Mittal, whose interests lies in Nature and indigenous knowledge systems did her practicum with Satvik, Kutch. She spent most of her time on field with the farmers who are following the traditional ways of farming in Kutch district. She is also helping the organisation in conceptualizing a Seed and Soil Museum.
- Richa Pandey, worked with National Center for Preservation Training and Technology (NCPTT), Natchitoches, USA which is part of National Parks Service, United States. She helped the organisation in formulating a Restore Purpose website which aims to document the restoration, infill and regeneration projects from around the world.
- Shaoni Pramanick, interested in Natural Heritage worked with Wildlife Institute of India. Throughout her internship she aimed to understand the Nature-Culture relationship and contributed to the organisation through preparation of various preliminary reports for the Cultural Landscape sites in India.
WORKSHOP AND COURSE PROJECTS LOOKING AT MIRZAPUR AREA WITHIN THE WORLD HERITAGE OF AHMEDABAD OLD CITY
As part of the first semester, the students studied heritage proportions of Mirzapur and Shahpur in the Old city of Ahmedabad. They selected a few buildings to apply what they have learned in various classes over the last semester. Along with individual projects, they have documented a) tangible aspects of selected buildings in terms of their structure, material, construction techniques, condition and various significances and b) intangible aspects of their surrounding areas in terms of the lives of the people, their traditions, occupations and practices. Through these project students put into practice what they have learned so that it aids them in the task of managing heritage.
MITHAKALI VILLAGE AND HALISA VILLAGE-SITES FOR HERITAGE MANAGEMENT WORKSHOP COURSES
Each semester in the first year has a workshop course that requires students to delve into a real life scenario to understand, identify, document heritage resources in a community, and analyse management challenges. The one in the second semester requires them to come up with strategies for Heritage Management that they are required to share with the community. The 2016 batch were given Mithakali village in Ahmedabad in the first semester workshop, and the Halisa village near Gandhinagar in their second semester as the cases to work on. The students made a presentation about their findings and recommendations at a community meeting in Halisa.
STUDENT INITIATED ENTREPRENEURSHIP PRACTICE
As part of a course on Entrepreneurship through Practice, the final year students along with MBA students studied the modus operandi of the traditional markets and community-based businesses that flourished in the walled-city of Ahmedabad. The skills and knowledge gained herewith, in the group of two, they had to come up with a unique business idea and sell the manufactured product in two markets, Bhadra Fort and C.G. road, respectively. They came up with ‘Tohfa’ and ‘Chamki’- two brands and made their products within a given budget of Rs. 5,000 for each. They managed to sell their products in markets for one whole day and earning more than 100 percent profit. Over this course of experience, the lessons and knowledge shared in the class and site visits helped students in executing ‘Tohfa’ and ‘Chamki’.
CHM STUDENTS RECLAIM LOST GEM OF AHMEDABAD
Ahmedabad University proclaimed their love for the city of Ahmedabad on February 14, 2016 by giving back a lost gem of Manek chowk to its people. A symbol of the city’s glorious past, an ornate fountain – which was donated to the city by Rao Bahadur Ranchhodlal Chhotalal, pioneer of textile industry, was lost in the course of time, and the city had even comfortably forgotten its existence. The partial remaining of the foundation is lying in the Sanskar Kendra City Museum.
The students took up a voluntary study of this fountain as part of their course work. After conducting physical mapping and survey among the community members at Manek Chowk identified the need to create an awareness about this fountain. They organized a public event in collaboration with Gujarat Institute of Civil Engineers and Architects (GICEA) on February 14, 2016 at Manek Chowk. The play ‘RANCHHOD RETIYON ANE ENO FUVARO’, in the form of Bhavai – a traditional Gujarati theatre, was written by Dr. Chinu Modi and directed by Archan Trivedi. The event was attended by local shop owners and residents of Manek Chowk along with Gautam Shah (Mayor of Ahmedabad), Pravin Patel (Standing Committee Chairman, AMC) Bijalben Patel (Chairperson of Recreation, Culture and Heritage Committee, AMC) Prakash Varmora ( Varmora Group of Companies ) and other dignitaries and invited guests.
As part of social responsibility component of the master degree programme, the second batch students spend time with a group of children of the construction workers at the University. In particular, on the occasion of children’s day (14th November), students distributed writing slates, chalks and they engage with them about an hour on each day. Apart from teaching basic numerical and alphabetic skills, students have decided to utilize this time to explore more about the heritage of these children. In this process of mutual learning, students are expected to collectively bring out ideas to manage their heritage thereby elevate their self-respect and self-confidence in their life pursuits.
Students’ Installation: Exhibit on Sabarmati
Renu Mittal, student of Masters of Heritage Management programme worked on the Sabarmati Memory Project as part of the Cultural and Natural Landscapes module during 3rd semester. This project was to explore the constantly evolving relationship of people with the river through the medium of photographs; art work and oral narratives of local people about their memories and associations with the river.
The hand block printed textile art and old and new photographs of the river are representative of the Sabarmati River’s 11.5 kilometers stretch within Ahmedabad city. The artwork displays the biodiversity of river; its rapidly changing eastern and western banks and the nine bridges with various block printed motifs and cotton block prints applique work.
Through this project, Renu tried to understand the connection between the natural and cultural history and landscape of the Sabarmati river and its city.
Blockprint Artisan: Mushtaq bhai
INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENTS STUDENTS
- PRARTHI SHAH was honoured with Salaam Vadodada award on 13th May 2017 in Vadodara. The award was organised by Gandevikar jewellers, Vadodara, and was given to three recipients for their contributions in the city. Prarthi was selected for the award for her contribution towards environmental awareness and youth engagement particularly through her Heritage Selfie Campaign.
- AANSHIKA JAIN presented her paper titled “Heritage in India: The means for inclusive economic development?” at the 19th International Conference on Cultural Economics International (ACEI) at Valladolid, Spain in June 2016. During her visit, she also visited the University of Valladolid and interacted with their faculty.
- RICHA PANDEY was been selected to participate in the US/ICOMOS International Exchange Programme (IEP) in summer 2017. This accounts for her practicum in the Master’s Programme, and will primarily take place at the US National Park Service’s National Centre for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) in Natchitoches, Louisiana, USA.
- Richa’s paper titled “Historic Regeneration: Old buildings, new life” and changing urban landscape in Shahjahanabad and the walled city of Ahmedabad, India “was accepted for Architectural Heritage’17 organised by DAKAM (Eastern Mediterranean Academic Research Centre) at Istanbul, Turkey
- Richa attended a workshop on “Understanding “Outstanding Universal Value” of World Heritage Sites in India”, conducted by INTACH Heritage Academy
- AAYUSHI MAHESHWARI, student of the Master degree programme, has taken forward the first semester Heritage Discourse research paper on ‘Commodification of cultural heritage’ which was been accepted for oral presentation as well as inclusion in the conference proceedings of the ICCHT 2018: 20th International conference on Cultural Heritage and Tourism to be held in Paris, France during January 25-26, 2018. The paper highlights the journey of real heritage to something which has become a marketable product in present scenario. Taking examples of 4 -four major industries, Tourism, Textile, Antiques and Culinary, the research validates that culture has become the most exotic product in the business world.
ONLINE ARTICLE ON GOMIRA MASK
- GOURAV MANDOLI, student of the Master of Heritage Management Programme, published an online article, The Story of carved faces from Bengal in GoUNESCO in the month of November 2017.