Administration & Management

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Happy Holi to All who by Design or Accident Visit this Page…suppoted by a small deliberation on ‘We’or ‘You’

HOW 2 CRE8 A NEW U THIS HOLI

Human Body in itself has a few limitations only but the opportunities possessed by it are numerous. Yet we find ourselves crowded with fears of sufferings, few of which are like wearing out of body [in language of accounting, the process is known as depreciation, i.e., loss in value of an asset due to wear and tear], aging [not in positive terms of learning by curiosity supported by experience leading to enlightenment but as increase in rate of catabolism over anabolism], sickness [as compared to not sending the vehicle to servicing when due] and fear [whereas it’s a clear fact that out of hundred per cent events that you fear may happen, out of them eighty per cent never happen in your life time Pareto’s law].

In all this we tend to forget on what should have been central to our existence, that is, our quest for creativity, curiosity, freedom, enlightenment and probably salvation. We get attached to what in real sense we cannot withhold due to being mortals.  At other times we are busy thinking that we happen to be CEO or this world [which itself is an Illusion] and have responsibility to solve all issues, except for which we are responsible and accountable. We are aware of all the mis-deeds committed by other and seem to be doing same when it’s our turn. Why do we want to correct all except us who happens to be at the pivot of all problematic issues.

Buy my words, and correct yourself, and I assure you of a better world that you will enter into, much better than the imagination that you might have about heaven. The elements of nature are here to provide a synergistic relationship, the moment you focus on changing yourself towards better. These elements make the life possible on earth. Never try to deceive them, as they individually have power, to make life extinct from the planet. These elements as per my limited awareness happen to be five as mentioned ahead: (i): Sky; (ii): Earth; (iii): Air; (iv): Water; and (v): Fire.

Think on facts and you can really be rewarded by not alone creating a new you but altogether a new world.  Remember that you are not mortal as soul, it your physical body that is mortal. You should be aware of the fact that, you may lose your mortal body by passage of time but not you. It’s simply like changing cloths, you are assured of getting a new mortal body, so keep on working towards good cause, not due to fear of being sent to hell but due to fact that within some time you will revisit the planet with new body. It’s just like going for a while to buy new cloths. What you have created will there when you come back [creation here means the contribution you made to this world where life exists]. While performing some task do not be attached with results basically material ones, may be they are there waiting for you when you revisit. In simple terms do remember that your body is nothing more than an illusion.

The fact that you are soul within your body and not the body itself should be remembered by you, even in most testing times. It is energy inside that makes life possible and not the physical body. If you start lacking energy or soul your body will not come to rescue.

If you are fearful of aging, please buy my words, time has never been enemy to anyone, irrespective of anything. It has been the directed efforts of individuals, societies, or nations [perhaps unknowingly] that made time their enemy. Time happens to be an artificial quantity. As we all believe or are made to believe that Supreme Power is eternal or resides in eternal plane, would anyone like to tell me that after how many tomorrows that eternal will come. Probably, eternity is never going to come even after infinite tomorrows. To me it seems that you need cross the boundary line that lies between temporal and non temporal world. So, how could an artificial thing be your enemy? You know that time could be suspended or at least manipulated.  Scientifically you would be aware of the fact that people in spacecraft age much slow as compared to their counterparts on the earth. On the other side we have learned the story of saints who used live for thousand years. Perhaps it was a result of their pious soul, will power and mental state that they were capable of suspending the time.

Remember that, as said in earlier paragraph, that it is the pious soul, will power and mental state of individual that can suspend time. On the other side if you get blocked in physical limits of your body and think that your body by itself is a physical object, then you are cooperating with destructive forces like ageing, feeling that change towards better can never happen, while at the same time on opposite extreme you develop a feeling as said earlier that you are eternal along with your body and it is you who is CEO of this world. How do you feel? Are these not the two opposite principle that you are trying to act upon? Take some time and think for and by yourself and let me how much on the wrong side I am.

If you still want to create a new you in you, then please do become conscious that you are not alone the body rather you should believe that body is very insignificant but important thing. Your intentions, thought, feeling which get transferred to brain are there to consequently impact all your cells in the body and also suck the energy out of you. Thus, the option is to have altruistic intentions, act towards minimizing the suffering of the humanity; believe that you are accountable for acts of yours and finally a new you can make a real and significant development on how the life on this planet shapes up. If you are working alone on self interested materialistic objectives alone, then please do not rate you self on the scale of human, lower order animals are much better at it than you. It is the intentions, acts, thought, and attributes like sacrifice, altruism etc that differentiate you from lower order animals.

 

ALWAYS YOURS — AS USUAL — SAURABH SINGH

”Kayani feared condemning Guv murder may endanger army unity”

Pakistan”s army chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who had “declined” to publicly condemn the January killing of Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer, had told Western envoys that there were “too many soldiers” in the ranks who “sympathised” with the assassin, a noted author has claimed.

Punjab's Slain Governor Salmaan TaaseerFor its part, the army has so far failed to express regret on either Minority Affairs Minister Shahbaz Bhatti”s murder or Taseer”s, Lahore-based author Ahmed Rashid, also a senior journalist, wrote in ”The New York Review of Books”. Both Bhatti, the only Christian member of the Pakistani Cabinet, and Taseer were killed for opposing the controversial blasphemy law.

Kayani “declined to publicly condemn Taseer”s death or even to issue a public condolence to his family. He told Western ambassadors in January in Islamabad that there were too many soldiers in the ranks who sympathise with the killer,” Rashid wrote.

Photo of Pak Army ChiefThe army chief showed the envoys “a scrapbook of photographs of Taseer”s killer being hailed as a hero by fellow police officers. Any public statement, he hinted, could endanger the army”s unity,” Rashid said.

Behind this silence lies “something more sinister,” he wrote. “For decades the army and the ISI have controlled the extremist groups, arming and training them in exchange for their continuing to serve as proxy forces in Afghanistan and Kashmir. But in recent years, the army has lost control of them and they are striking targets of their own.”

“Yet the army has refused to help crack down on its rogue proteges despite the fact that extremists have increasingly attacked the army and the ISI itself,” Rashid said.

This is all the more ominous in view of the resources the military commands: half a million men, another half a million reserves, 110 nuclear arms, according to US media estimates, and one of the largest intelligence agencies in the world, the ISI, which has an estimated 100,000 employees, he noted.

“If the army has now surrendered any willingness to take on the extremists, the political establishment had already given up long ago,” Rashid wrote.

President Asif Ali Zardari, the husband of slain PPP leader Benazir Bhutto, is no stranger to extremism himself and his populist base has traditionally voted for the party”s “anti-mullah, anti-army and pro-people policies,” he said.

“Unfortunately those principles were abandoned by a series of corrupt and ineffectual leaders, and the PPP today is not even a shadow of what it once was,” he said, while noting that Zardari has also “backtracked” on foreign policy goals such as improving relations with India and Afghanistan.

Pak-army-Parvez with next in Command Kiyaani

“The security agencies have unleashed Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) — the largest and most feared extremist group in Pakistan, which was behind the 2008 Mumbai attacks — on to the streets of Lahore,” Rashid said.

“Right now Pakistan is becoming a place where there is an army without a country,”  wrote Rashid.

Always Yours — As Usual — Saurabh Singh

Source:http://news.in.msn.com/international/article.aspx?cp-documentid=4994774

THE JASMINE REVOLUTION — Part – I

At times, few events, though not very often noticed, normally not even thought worth being covered by national media, but when the acts happen to be of SUPREME SACRIFICE or same order, change course of not alone history but geography too. The attempt is not to dub an act of self immolation as an act of bravery, and normally hundreds of cases of self immolation and attempts of self immolation get reported in media every year, besides lot many which even fail to find space in news media in nearly all the corners of the world which without fuelling in a minor change in governance.

The name “Mohamed Bouazizi” is not a famous or well known name even today, and thus indirectly gives an impression that history in due course of time may even forget to contain any record of this name for reference of future generations. The act of self immolation by this Tunisian Street Vendor to protest against the corruption is an apt example of helplessness being faced by common men, irrespective of him being a citizen, subject, at mercy of any dictator, fascist or Junta or probably any other form of Structure of Governance.

Strange are ways things are destined, much beyond human vision and imagination, it seems if  21st Century were a Century of Convergence of Scale for nearly every sphere of human related activities. A Century standing witness to Convergence of Communication Technology and Tools, Convergence of Economies of Nations, Convergence of Trade, Convergence of Financial Governance, and perhaps even Convergence of Revolutions against Governance Structures across various nations and probably the list continue…s, neither can it be covered in this deliberation nor will it be attempted.

Till a couple of months back, the individual of the day was busy in himself thinking that all the problems could happen and will happen with others only, aptly defined selfish by Adam Smith and the league, was thinking of governance all around the globe being cool, calm and pleasant except the places messed up by United States of America. Perhaps still the individuals will remain individuals and will rarely form a society or nation; as people aware of history know very well that even the phenomenon or concept of nation is a gift of as recent as nineteenth century.

Connecting back, it was morning of December 17, 2010 when Mohamed Bouazizi, a 26 years old street vendor of Tunisia immolated himself protesting against corruption, an event of the magnitude often not even noticed by world media, the Arab World has not remained the same as it was till hours before of this act on the same day. It has left whole geo-political area simmering and inhabitants rumbling.  It has initiated a chain reaction.

The chain reaction, that has already made twenty three years old rule of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, (in power since 1987) now a chapter in history of Tunisia. It did not stop here itself. It perhaps turned a torchbearer for other nations of geopolitical area often called as Gulf (British call it as Middle East), or as the author calls it, the Middle West. It did not stop at Tunisia. The next link in chain turned out to be Egypt. In Egypt, the war hero of Egypt Israel War of 1973 that made Egypt a power centre in Middle West and one time air force officer Hosni Mubarak was shown door after his thirty year rule. To world it may look a silent transition made success by people of Egypt but sources say that at least 300 people lost their life and another 3000 suffered injuries. Reality about real causalities is not known due to initial crack down on media and still no real transition to any new form of governance taking place. It is probably still another Hosni Mubarak just individual may differ, as no real transition to any form of governance has taken place, but junta in control.

“The phenomenon being deliberated, as on date, has come to be known as SIDI BOUZID REVOLT in Arab World and as JASMINE REVOLUTION elsewhere.”

Similar turmoil, protests against governments in place, in numerous other nations of gulf is being seen and also the ruthlessness and lack of human emotions with which they are being suppressed and retaliated by various governments in place. It is the same story today in Algeria, Bahrain, Jordan, Libya and Yemen.

Always Yours — As Usual — Saurabh Singh

GOVERNMENT & ADMINISTRATION BOTH ARE HAND IN GLOVES WITH THEIR SINISTER OBJECTIVE IN PROMOTING SLUMS

The evictions that were done for the beautification of Delhi Prior to Common Wealth Games have had a lasting impact on people’s lives, who were there occupying the place as slums and living there for a good number of years.

The blogger is not supporter of Slums, but if they have cropped up, then  that a very first lapse of Government in meeting its developmental agenda on one hand, and people who are provided duty of taking care of the issue of encroachment of such nature.

The blogger wants to learn that have the jobs, funds, pensions and other benefits that were being provided to such employees have ceased to exist or government wants a bigger proof of their inefficiency.

On the other had if something is illegal, under what laws the legalized electricity and water connections, ration cards, voter identity cards and an identity card were provided to inhabitants there.

IT CAN BE VERY SAFELY CONCLUDED THAT GOVERNMENTS AND ADMINISTRATION BOTH ARE HAND IN GLOVES WITH THEIR SINISTER OBJECTIVE & ARE PROMOTING SLUMS TO CROP UP AT THE PLACES WHERE PRICES OF LAND ARE EXPECTED TO ESCALATE OR CAN GET ANY OF THREE FACTORS AS MENTIONED AHEAD TO ENJOY; THE FACTORS BEING MONEY, LAND, & SEX.

 

“Gyarah din ke khel ke liye woh aaye,dhoom mahcaye aur humein phas ke chale gaye,” (They came for the games for 11 days, had their fun and left, leving us trapped in the middle of nowhere). 26-year-old Zora is angry as she says this. She is one of the estimated 200,000 people who were forcefully evicted from slums in the National Capital Region as a part of beautifying the capital in preparation for the Commonwealth Games 2010.

Anoop - One of Residents of JJ Colony, Valmiki Nagar


Zora, who is married and stays at her in-laws house, keeps coming back to what once used to be her paternal house in Indira Gandhi Camp II in Sewa Nagar in South Delhi, for she does not have parents, but has two younger sisters and a brother. Her two sisters live in a plastic tent, which is often targetted by miscreants at night. “Each night I go back home after visiting my sisters, I go with a fear. I kiss them on their forehead daily, not knowing what awaits them in the night. They have a plastic sheet as a door and it is well known in the area that there are two women in the tent, with just a 11-year-old boy for protection,” Zora said.

 

Zora - One of Slum Dwellers at a Meeting

The slum, which has been housing migrants from Madhya Pradesh for the last twenty years, was razed, without any notice in January 2009. The slum cluster consisted of approximately 300 homes, with legal water supply and electricity connections.

 


We were granted ration cards, voter identity cards and an identity card, which makes us eligible for rehabilitation. When Sheila ji (Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit) came to our basti asking for votes, she had assured us that our colony would be legalized. Instead, it was razed. I was cooking food when they came with the bulldozers. They did not even give me the time to collect valuables or even identity cards from my jhuggi,” says 35-year-old Kamla, a single mother, who has two children.

Kamla -- Another one of Them

“And all this for what? That parking lot remains empty today. There are no events in those stadiums today. The foreigners have gone,” chips in Anoop, a resident of JJ Valmiki camp near Thyagaraj stadium.

The men and women were speaking at the launch of a report titled “Forced evictions and Commonwealth Games” prepared by NGO Housing and Land Rights network. The HLRN had undertaken a fact finding mission across 19 sites in Delhi, where the government forcefully evicted colonies while preparing the capital for Commonwealth Games.

“Basic human rights have been violated during these evictions. Most of the evictions happened during extreme weather conditions, during festivals or prior to school examinations. Atleast three instances of deaths and several other cases of injuries have been reported during these evictions. The affected families have not been compensated or rehabilitated, forcing them to continue a life which lacks security and violates the basic right to live with dignity. The most alarming violation is the violation of human rights of women. Young women are vulnerable to sexual abuse and violence resulting from exposure to insecure and inadequate living conditions,” says Shivani Chaudhry, associate director of HLRN.

In addition to women facing problems like harassment, lack of security and lack of space for personal hygiene, another direct consequence of a mass scale eviction like the one that took place in Delhi since 2004, was violation of rights of children.

Raman - Who used to Manage one of the Schools
Many children were forced to drop out of schools, as atleast three schools Deepshika Primary School (sector 52, Gurgaon), Pragati Wheel School (Yamuna  Banks) and Viklang Basti Informal school were razed for preparations. Many of these children were forced to take up jobs to supplement family incomes.

Sher Singh, who was in class VI of the privately-run Pragati Wheel School on the Yamuna Banks (opposite Commonwealth Games Village), recounts how the government bulldozers razed the school while they were inside studying.

“They came and asked all of us to leave. We pleaded with them not to do it, but they told us they had to do it for security reasons. Since then, I have not been able to get admission in any school,” says Sher Singh.


Raman Khanna, who runs the school, said, “We reopened the school last month. I am running a school with no roof. I have to, as the families of the boys and girls who used to study there, requested me repeatedly to. As long as the rainy season does not start, it will be okay, I think. There were about 180 students with us before evictions and now we have about 90. I am running the school literally by paying a daily bribe to beat policemen.”


Former Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court, Justice AP Shah, who released the report, told rediff.com, “In 2009, a night shelter had been razed. I had initiated a suo moto case against the MCD regarding the demolition of the night shelter and ordered the MCD immediately to restore the Pusa Roundabout night shelter. Till date this order has not been followed. The government hid behind a technicality, as they so often do. In addition, not even a single notice has been sent to any of the officials connected with such mass scale demolitions. And I am also surprised that the National Human Rights Commission has been silent on the issue for so long.”

On suggestions given by Justice Shah, the HLRN has decided to submit the report to the NHRC and file a PIL in the Delhi High Court.

Miloon Kothari, the executive director of HLRN said, “We have enough evidence. We will also submit the report to the UN as well. If there is international pressure, the government will budge. The tragic violations of basic human rights should not go unpunished like this.”

 

Always Yours — As Usual —- Saurabh Singh

New World Order Imminent!- Anyone For A Game Of Ping Pong?

This vedio has been uploaded for my learned audiences, fans, students and scholars and rest others, who wish to understand issue of New World Order. I would top up the same by a commentry on Asian Environment Soon. Hope you find some value in it.Always Your—– As Usual — Saurabh Singh

Vodpod videos no longer available.

 

Relationship Marketing in Retailing

Only Business and No Administration

Only Business and No Administration will never create a Synergy Termed Business Administration. Business Administration is not alone Commerce; rather to be exact, it is art and science of governance applied to Business Entity.Illustration could be given as in Case of Nations, they do transact a number of Business and Commerce Related Activities, but what is being done is act called Governance and Administration. Popularly Termed as Public Administration.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

 

Get Introduced with Barak M Obama — before he Lands in Mumbai-INDIA

Obama at bottom of his popularity and further confidence broken by  Poll Results

India, stand by to welcome a wounded American President. A crushing defeat in the mid-term Congressional elections stares President Obama’s Democratic Party on the eve of his four-nation trip that begins with a three-day Mumbai-Delhi swing later this week. The expected rout is likely to impact his agenda for the visit, which has already been heavily weighted towards economic issues at the expense of a strategic outreach with an eye on Tuesday’s polls.

But it has not made much difference, and things don’t look good for Obama. A 12-foot-high stack of pumpkins on the White House lawns on Sunday generated jokes about why Democrats are running scared on Halloween, which Obama celebrated with his kids after taking a break from the pell-mell of last-minute campaigning.

Democrats are in danger of losing both the House of Representatives (where all 435 seats are at stake) and nearly a third of the 100-member Senate, besides a host of governorships and state legislatures in play.

Almost every opinion poll has projected a heavy defeat for the Democrats, with the certain loss of the House of Representatives and possibly even the Senate. Republicans are poised to erase the 39-seat difference in the 435-member House to take control of the chamber.

In the words of Harvard Historian Professor James T. Kloppenberg

Professor James T. Kloppenberg ‘s authored book has been published on just the past Sunday by Princeton University Press.

Professor chose to focus on the influences that shaped President Barack Obama’s view of the world, he interviewed the president’s former professors and classmates, combed through his books, essays and speeches, and even read every article published during the three years Obama was involved with the Harvard Law Review (“a superb cure for insomnia,” Kloppenberg said). What he did not do was speak to Obama. “He would have had to deny every word,” Kloppenberg said with a smile. The reason, he explained, is his conclusion that Obama is a true  intellectual — a word that is frequently considered an epithet among populists with a robust suspicion of Ivy League elites. In New York City last week to give a standing-room-only lecture about his forthcoming intellectual biography, Reading Obama: Dreams, Hopes, and the American Political Tradition, Kloppenberg explained that he sees Obama as a kind of philosopher president, a rare breed that can be found only a handful of times in US history.

“There’s John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and John Quincy Adams, then Abraham Lincoln and in the 20th century just Woodrow Wilson,” he said. To Kloppenberg the philosophy that has guided Obama most consistently is pragmatism, a uniquely American system of thought developed at the end of the 19th century by William James, John Dewey and Charles Sanders Peirce. It is a philosophy that grew up after Darwin published his theory of evolution and the Civil War reached its bloody end.

Pragmatism maintains that people are constantly devising and updating ideas to navigate the world in which they live; it embraces open-minded experimentation and continuing debate. “It is a philosophy for skeptics, not true believers,” Kloppenberg said. Those who heard Kloppenberg present his argument at a conference on intellectual history at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center responded with prolonged applause. “The way he traced Obama’s intellectual influences was fascinating for us, given that Obama’s academic background seems so similar to ours,” said Andrew Hartman, a historian at Illinois State University who helped organize the conference.

Kloppenberg  chose to focus on one slice of the president’s makeup: his ideas. In the professor’s analysis the president’s worldview is the product of the country’s long history of extending democracy to disenfranchised groups, as well as the specific ideological upheavals that struck campuses in the 1980s and 1990s. He mentions, for example, that Obama was at Harvard during “the greatest intellectual ferment in law schools in the 20th century,” when competing theories about race, feminism, realism and constitutional original intent were all battling for ground.

Obama was ultimately drawn to a cluster of ideas known as civic republicanism or deliberative democracy, Kloppenberg argues in the book . Taking his cue from Madison, Obama writes in his 2006 book The Audacity of Hope that the constitutional framework is “designed to force us into a conversation,” that it offers “a way by which we argue about our future.” This notion of a living document is directly at odds with the conception of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who has spoken of “the good, old dead Constitution.”

Kloppenberg compiled a long list of people who he said helped shape Obama’s thinking and writing, including Weber and Nietzsche, Thoreau and Emerson, Langston Hughes and Ralph Ellison. Contemporary scholars like historian Gordon Wood, philosophers John Rawls and Hilary Putnam, anthropologist Clifford Geertz and legal theorists Martha Minow and Cass Sunstein (who is now working at the White House) also have a place.

Despite the detailed examination, Kloppenberg concedes that Obama remains something of a mystery. “To critics on the left he seems a tragic failure, a man with so much potential who has not fulfilled the promise of change that partisans predicted for his presidency,” he said. “To the right he is a frightening success, a man who has transformed the federal government and ruined the economy.”He finds both assessments flawed. Conservatives who argue that Obama is a socialist or an anti-colonialist (as Dinesh D’Souza does in his book “The Roots of Obama’s Rage”) are far off the mark, he said.

“Adams and Jefferson were the only anti-colonialists whom Obama has been affected by,” he told the audience in New York. “He has a profound love of America.” And his opposition to inequality stems from Puritan preachers and the social gospel rather than socialism. As for liberal critics, Kloppenberg took pains to differentiate the president’s philosophical pragmatism, which assumes that change emerges over decades, from the kind of “vulgar pragmatism” practiced by politicians looking only for expedient compromise. (He gave former President Bill Clinton’s strategy of “triangulation” as an example.)

 

Always Yours——— As Usual——–  Saurabh Singh

SHGs Performance Compared Based on Mentor Affiliation– New Monograph in Press


The Cover Page of Monograph at The moment in Press is Provided below with all relevant Information.


ISBN: 978-3-639-25488-4

Title: A COMPARATIVE REVIEW OF SHGs’ PERFORMANCE

Sub Title: MENTORED BY GOVERNMENT Vs. NON GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATION

Authors: SAURABH SINGH & Dr. Raj Kamal

Hope you find it to be OK

Always Yours———- as Usual  ———— Saurabh Singh

MANAGEMENT IS CLASSIFIED AS A PROFESSIONAL DISCIPLINE: BUT WHY IS IT SO?

MANAGEMENT IS CLASSIFIED AS A PROFESSIONAL DISCIPLINE BUT WHY?

The nature of professionalism is reviewed and the argument made that records management can be classified as a professional discipline. Significant elements of a profession, such as university education, professional associations, and professional literature, have developed in records management.

Further professionalization of the discipline has gained momentum with the development of electronic records, which have given rise to a new and distinct body of theory and knowledge and also triggered research activities. These developments permit records management to establish itself not only as a recognized profession, but also as a scholarly discipline.

Records management was first identified and acknowledged as a distinct occupation in the early 19th century.(1) This activity arose in response to the growing amount of information and documents produced, used, and stored in organizations (both public and private). The need to control the production, storage, and disposition of records (i.e., documents received or created by an organization in the course of its business and retained by that organization as evidence of its activities, processes, and transactions) had become increasingly important throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. An ever-increasing volume of records has been a direct consequence of the information explosion.

New information technologies (e.g., photocopiers, personal computers, the Internet) have added new dimensions to the problem of controlling records effectively and efficiently. Their use, ironically, has resulted in a dramatic growth in paper-based documents.

For a long time, records management in terms of organizational structure was a handmaiden of archives administration (Hare 1996). Only the shift from an emphasis on document preservation to that of document creation and its life cycle construct allowed for the emancipation of the profession.

The establishment of the National Archives of the United States in 1934 and the development of the life cycle concept are two forces which resulted in records management moving “from being a series of sporadic and unrelated efforts to an organized, structured, and logically based approach to creating, maintaining, and disposing of recorded information.” (Penn, Pennix, and Coulson 1994)

What, then, makes records management a profession? What characteristics distinguish it from other occupations that do not enjoy this status? This article will demonstrate that records management fits the definition of a profession, and that indeed it is moving a step beyond – toward becoming a scholarly discipline.

Definition of a Profession

There are many definitions of profession, professional, or a process of professionalization. An effective definition comes from Millerson, who describes a profession as “a type of high-grade, non-manual occupation, with both objectively and subjectively recognized occupational status, possessing a well-defined area of study or concern and providing a definite service, after advanced training and education.” (Millerson 1964)

To further qualify this definition, it is useful to look at Greenwood’s list of characteristics that define a profession: systematic theory, autonomy, community sanction, ethical codes and a culture (Greenwood 1966). Strauss, on the other hand, argues that there are four values associated with professionalism: expertise, autonomy, commitment, and responsibility (Strauss 1963). Cox identifies five characteristics of an archival profession: specialized knowledge or theory, community sanction, professional cohesion, culture, and institutionalized altruism (Cox 1994). Abbott defines a fully formed profession as an organized body of experts who apply some particular form of esoteric knowledge to particular cases (Abbott 1988).

Established professions have systems of instruction and training together with entry by examination and other formal prerequisites. They are believed to possess and enforce some kind of code of ethics or rules of behavior. They are also thought to rely on fees for services. These various definitions are, in fact, closely linked and comprise the same fundamental principles of what constitutes a profession.

Most definitions of a profession focus on theory-based education as opposed to on-the-job training, existence of professional bodies responsible for regulating a profession, and a service orientation among the practitioners. Even though in the case of records management, some of the characteristics of a full profession(2) have not yet developed, the existence of others, such as professional education and training, professional organizations, professional literature, and codes of ethics(3) are sufficient to accord it the elevated status of a profession.(4)

Abbott argues that changes in technology provide most new professional tasks. He gives an example of engineering which “arose out of increasingly technical quality of machinery and physical structure. Civil engineers designed fortifications and siege machinery, bridges and canals… As these problems became more technical and more complex, the requisite education increased correspondingly, and civil engineering achieved professional status by late 18th century in France. Mechanical engineers were a later artisan group, which was transformed into a professional one as manufacture became more and more complicated.” (Abbott 1988)

Similarly, significant changes to the increasingly complex body of knowledge and expertise required to handle records in electronic systems may bring about – if the chance is seized by records managers – this element of specialized, esoteric, and exclusive knowledge mentioned in many traditional definitions of a full profession.

Professional Education

A prerequisite to becoming a professional is an education to degree level. We cannot conceive of seeking advice from a physician or an attorney who did not complete several years of university training. We would not entrust our children’s education to teachers who had not completed their required course of study. As Greenwood writes: “Because understanding of theory is so important to professional skill, preparation for a profession must be an intellectual as well as practical experience. On-the-job training through apprenticeship, which suffices for non-professional occupations, becomes inadequate for a profession. Orientation in theory can be achieved best through formal education in an academic setting.” (Greenwood 1966)

Until quite recently in the United Kingdom, there were no degree programs exclusively dedicated to educating records managers. One could not receive a university degree in records management. Individuals wishing to pursue a career in records management had to enroll in programs designed for archivists, librarians, or information scientists; records management classes were offered solely as electives. Therefore, most of their skills and knowledge had to be acquired on the job. As valuable as such knowledge is, it did not provide intellectual rigor or theoretical basis for records management to develop into a truly professional activity or a scholarly discipline.

On-the-job training can teach practical skills but almost always fails to provide theoretical background that underpins knowledge and understanding. Knowledge of how things are done in one place may lack portability. This deficiency limits one’s understanding of the processes and principles, and therefore hinders ability to innovate and develop them. Developments in graduate education for records managers in North America are described by Walters (Walters 1995).

Even if we argue that in paper-based systems, records management did not require theory but only a set of principles or techniques, we have to admit that the complexity of electronic records management brought about both new theoretical and practical issues to be addressed.(5) Formal education became the only effective means of providing records managers with new skills to operate in this environment.

Cox says of education for archivists dealing with electronic records: “the only effective means by which to educate electronic records archivists would be to have students first complete a comprehensive archival education program…and then take an additional year for study in electronic information technology, recordkeeping and information systems.” (Cox 1995)

If records managers want to participate in new developments in electronic document management, the same strict educational and training requirements should be implemented for them.

Taking a broader approach, Walters argues that “the individual information professions (including records management) need their own degrees based upon the distinct nature of their theoretical bases.” (Walters 1995)

Realizing this need, three universities in the United Kingdom now offer courses leading to master’s degrees in records management. These are University College London (offering a master’s in archives and records management), the University of Liverpool (currently offering a master of archives and records management and, from 1999, an MBA in records management), and the University of Northumbria at Newcastle (offering a master’s in information and records management and in records management by distance learning). University College London also offers a doctoral program in records management, thus demonstrating the fact that records management is becoming, in addition to its professional role, a scholarly activity. Several institutions of higher learning, professional associations and private organizations offer diplomas, short courses, or certificates in records management. For instance, TPFL, an international information services company, began delivering professional training courses in records management as early as 1985.

To address the educational needs of practicing records managers, the University of Northumbria at Newcastle has developed a distance education master’s course in records management. The University of Wales, Aberystwyth plans to launch a new degree program in records management (in both full-time and distance learning modes) in 1999. For those who prefer – or need – qualifications alternative to degrees from universities, there are national vocational qualifications in records management (Dakers and Hare 1996).

Formally recognized professional education (by means of a higher degree) is an important element in establishing an occupation as a profession. It also allows that profession to develop and nourish its scholarly base. University education provides students with much more than practical “how-to-do-it” knowledge – it is designed to underpin this knowledge with a theoretical basis (why it is done) and provoke critical inquiries into the nature of the discipline. Furthermore, a profession strives to take control over the training process through the process of accreditation and by developing competency standards.

Professional Bodies

Carr-Saunders and Wilson (Carr-Saunders and Wilson 1933) wrote that “a profession can be only said to exist when there are bonds between the practitioners, and those bonds can take but one state, that of formal association.” They added that historically, professional organizations took upon themselves functions relating to the competence and honor of their members, protection of material interests and public activities as well as study functions (Carr-Saunders and Wilson 1933). These functions, defined over 50 years ago, are still very much alive.

As Cox wrote, addressing both the issue of the importance of professional associations as well as the need for their exclusive nature:

The sense of belonging and the association’s capacity of affecting change and representing all its members can only occur if we understand the members of our profession to be those that possess good educational backgrounds, have mastered the essential professional knowledge, are keeping up with the expanding professional knowledge, and who use that knowledge in an appropriate fashion to preserve and manage archival records (Cox 1996).

ARMA International in the United States acts as a professional association for records managers (see http://www.arma.org). It currently has more than 10,300 members from the United States, Canada, and 36 other countries. ARMA’s mission is to

* advance records and information management as a discipline and a profession

* organize and promote programs of research, education, training, and networking in the profession of records and information management

* support the enhancement of professionalism of the members of ARMA

* promote cooperative endeavors with related professional groups

In Australia, the Records Management Association of Australia (RMAA) is some 2,000 members strong (see http://www.rmaa.com.au). Founded in 1969 and incorporated in 1975, it took responsibility for developing workable standards and practices for managing records. It assists individuals and organizations involved in records management and oversees the development of records management education. The main association’s objectives are to

* promote effectively records management and the Records Management Association of Australia

* provide quality services equitably to all clients

* implement a competitive pricing structure

* allocate resources to marketing activities

* assist members with their professional development

* enhance the effective and efficient communications between federal and branch communications

* maintain and develop further industry and professional standards and guidelines for the management of records

* develop policies and maintain an advocacy role on records management issues

Other organizations representing the interests of records managers and advocating the profession are the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators, which represent the interests of American and Canadian government archivists and records managers (see http://www.nagara.org), and the International Records Management Federation (IRMF), founded in 1970 to “promote and advance the profession through education, research and study; disseminate professional knowledge, techniques and information…and develop and maintain an international forum for communication and education.” (International Records Management Journal 1996)

In the United Kingdom, the Records Management Society takes on some functions of a professional association (e.g., advocating records management and publishing professional literature), but it also strives to act as a voice for all those working in records management, regardless of their formal qualifications, and focuses very much on the training needs of practitioners (see http://www.rms-gb.org.uk).

Other professional functions (e.g., accreditation of degree programs, professional publications, register of members) are carried out by the Society of Archivists through its Records Management Group founded in July 1977. The Society of Archivists also offers a diploma in archive administration, a distance learning program aimed at practicing archivists and records managers who are members of the society.

Other organizations promoting records management as a profession in the United Kingdom and abroad are the International Records Management Trust, founded in 1989 with the aim of empowering records managers in developing countries to deliver effective information services (see http://www.comnet.mt:800/irmt/about.html), and the Association of Commonwealth Archivists and Records Managers established in 1984 (see http://www.comnet.mt/acarm). The latter organization is primarily concerned with improving the quality of records management in the Commonwealth countries and, like the Records Management Society, is open to all records management practitioners. The Institute of Information Scientists and the Library Association have records management professionals among their members. The records-related role of the latter two organizations may become even greater when, as Lawes points out, all information functions within organizations begin to merge, when information management is perceived in its totality, and the distinction between external and internal information blurs even further (Lawes 1995).

(These two organizations, in recognition of disappearing differences between various information professions, are currently conducting merger talks. See http://www.iis.org.uk)

Professional Literature

One of the key elements in every definition of a professional is a continuous need to develop and improve knowledge and skills. Professional literature can be very useful in the quest for further knowledge and professional development. It can also act as the voice of a profession advocating its rights and responsibilities as well as a forum for professional discussion.

Currently, only a handful of English language journals are dedicated exclusively to records management: Records Management Journal (published by Aslib), The Information Management Journal (formerly Records Management Quarterly) published by ARMA International, Records Management Bulletin (published by the Records Management Society), Informaa Quarterly published by RMAA, and International Records Management Journal (published by IRMF). The Society of Archivists’ Records Management Group also publishes in the area. All these publications play an important role in the life of the profession, and some of them also have an ambition to become tools of scholarly communication. Records Management Journal and The Information Management Journal follow established editorial practices of scholarly journals, are refereed, and seek materials dealing with research in the area of records management. Unfortunately, for the moment, they are not indexed in Social Sciences Citation Index or Arts&Humanities Citation Index, indices traditionally including journals with an established reputation for the high merit of their scholarly contents.(8)

Many articles focusing on records management are published in a wide range of journals, usually in the areas of information management, librarianship, archival studies, and business and computing (i.e., Managing Information, Archives and Museum Informatics, Aslib Proceedings, Journal of Documentation, Journal of Information Science, and Information Management and Technology).

There are also many books published in the field of records management. The Library of Congress catalogue lists 411 titles published after 1973 with broad subject headings of “Public records – Management” or “Business records – Management.” The majority of these books deal with practical issues of records management (the “how-to” approach) or are textbooks for students and practitioners.

Modern technology has moved professional and scholarly communication into new planes. Electronic mail, online discussion lists, and electronic publishing have enriched communication greatly. Records management professionals take full advantage of these new developments and participate in various discussion lists and newsgroups (e.g., rimip and archives-nra in the United Kingdom or erces-l, nara.announcements and misc.business.records in the United States). Related listservs based in the United States include recmgmt@listserv.syr.edu, km@mccmedia.com, and aarchives@listserve.muohio.edu.

Many reports, policy statements, and discussion pieces are also published on the Internet, adding to the speed of communication and widening the potential audience. Professional organizations use the Internet (e.g., home pages) to communicate with members and the general public.

From Professionalism to Scholarship

Professionalism and scholarship are mutually inclusive; one could not exist without the other. Professional activities have to be backed by solid scholarly research. Conversely, many scholarly activities would not take place if not for their expected future practical applications.

Carr-Saunders and Wilson wrote about the connection between science(9) and professionalism. (They use the broad definition of the term “science:” ” the word science is here used, not in its unfortunate restriction to the natural or mathematical sciences, but in its comprehensives in which it includes the Arts.”) They claim that “the professional man [sic] is in touch with the world of science and its latest developments…and he carries out his work in the world of affairs. He is or might be a mediator between the world of pure study and the world of everyday life.” They saw the role of a professional as that of one who translates the world of science and discovery into the language of the common man and to his advantage (Carr-Saunders and Wilson 1933).

Pemberton defends the need for solid theory and research in the development of records management. He criticizes practitioners’ dislike of “matters theoretical” and claims that “without theoretical foundations, there can be no meaningful research effort, and without research we have only hearsay, conjecture, anecdote, and possibly propaganda. Given sound methodology and a little patience, research can provide answers to specific problems.” (Pemberton 1990)

In common with many professional disciplines, the need for practical and theoretical research will become of paramount importance as records management matures. Records managers turn to researchers and scholars to survey current practice, to develop models and, eventually, to construct paradigms.(10) Records management is entering the stage of developing such a scholarly base. The development of electronic records management gives both practitioners and researchers in records management new impetus – the changes in the ways records are created, used, stored, and archived are unprecedented. Records managers are faced with new questions for which answers have to be found; and these can be given by carefully conducted research. It is important that records managers get involved in research activities now, to ensure that changes and developments are not forced upon them by technical solutions created by software and hardware producers, and that these solutions and all new developments take into consideration specific, real needs of managing records. They can also ensure that new possibilities created by the electronic environment are not wasted by insisting on relying on traditional methods of managing records.(11) In 1996, Daniel Atkins opened a conference on research into electronic records with these words:

The raw technology is far ahead of our principled understanding of how to use it most effectively; and our understanding of use is well ahead of our understanding of how to capture, appraise, and provide long-term access to the objects of the digital age… Grounded research and development projects, synergistically linked with other major human-centered digital library and collaboratory research projects are imperative (Atkins 1996).

Research in Records Management

A clear sign that records management is developing as a scholarly discipline is research at the doctoral level. Scanning titles of recent Ph.D. theses in the area of records management gives a fair picture of the development of the discipline. Three distinct areas of research interest emerge:

* historical perspective (see Wickramanayake 1992; Craig 1989)

* descriptive studies of current practices (see Hutchinson 1996; Cisco 1992; Galopin 1989; Moore 1988)

* research into electronic records (see Gilliland-Swetland 1995; Cox 1992)

Again, research into electronic records seems to dominate the current scene.

Scholarly pursuit in electronic records management is often driven by practical applications. It often takes a form of R&D activities funded privately by software corporations, archival and records management agencies, and carried out in commercial organizations and, increasingly, in universities. (for a discussion of such R&D projects, see Barry 1997.)

In 1991, the United States National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) funded a working meeting on research issues in electronic records, which resulted in the formulation of 10 research questions pertaining to electronic records management. Subsequently the NHPRC funded several U.S. projects which undertook research into the issues identified (see http://www.nara.gov/nara/nhprc/ergrants.html). The most influential of these was a research project into functional requirements carried out at the University of Pittsburgh (see http://sis.pitt.edu/nrjc/pp3.html and http://www.lis.pitt.edu/~cerar). The success of that project allowed for further institutionalization of research into electronic records (e.g., the Center for Electronic Recordkeeping and Archival Research was founded at the University of Pittsburgh).

The Pittsburgh project created a theoretical framework for managing electronic records. The framework was tested in practice by projects such as the Indiana University Recordkeeping System, Building Partnerships (New York State Archives), the Philadelphia Electronic Records Initiative, and the Vermont Functional Analysis Project.

During a conference on research in electronic records (Atkins 1996), the research agenda drafted by the NHPRC five years earlier was revised. Now researchers, enriched by the experience of several years of research into electronic records, turned to emerging issues. They felt that more work was needed on models for electronic recordkeeping in a variety of environments; particularly models on methods and best practices for long-term preservation, on assessment of the costs and benefits of preserving electronic records, and on technical solutions. It was also underlined that research into electronic records management should be carried out by multidisciplinary teams and based on appropriate research techniques and methodologies. The grounded research approach was singled out as the most appropriate one for researching into electronic records (Hedstrom 1996).

A year later, a special issue of Archives and Museum Informatics published proceedings of the second Working Meeting on Electronic Records Research. Researchers from Australia, Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, and the United States reported on their newest research projects. The United Kingdom was represented at the meeting by only one research team.

In the United Kingdom, the funding of records management research still remains a problem. Because of its relative youth and modest achievements, research and funding councils are reluctant to provide significant funding for records management research.

Research councils in England, Scotland, and Wales do not recognize records management as a district research discipline. An exception here is funding provided under the Joint Information Systems Committee’s (JISC) Humanities Non-Formula Funding scheme.(12) Most research activities concerned with records and electronic records management are done on a piecemeal basis. No national agenda for electronic records management exists and no single central body is seen to lead the research efforts. The United Kingdom clearly lags behind its colleagues from the United States, Australia, and Canada.

At the Department of Information and Library Management at the University of Northumbria at Newcastle, research activities concentrate on the training needs of and provision of education for records managers. (University College London is also involved in researching into educational needs of records managers. See http://www.ucl.ac.uk/SLAIS/projects/projects.html) At the first stages of this research, a survey of training needs of practicing records managers was conducted (King 1996). Based on the findings of this survey, a model for a postgraduate distance learning program was developed and delivered (McLeod 1995).

Another strand of records management research in the department concentrates on records management practices of various groups. The first project in this strand was concerned with surveying records management practices in small and medium size enterprises (Webster, Hare, and McLeod 1999). Another project focuses on the management of records in library and information science (LIS) research projects (see http://ilm.unn.ac.uk/lisp.html). Among others, it investigates such issues as current practice, the perceived value of LIS records, responsibility for their archiving, their ownership, and the role of funding agencies in managing research records. Based on the work of Theodore Shellenberg, a U.S. archivist, a functional model of research process outputs (records) was developed.

Toward a Fully Developed Profession

A profession cannot develop without research into the nature of the discipline with which the profession is concerned. In light of developments taking place, records management is undergoing the process of professionalization by acquiring some of the characteristics of a fully developed profession:

* formal education to degree level

* existence and strengthening of professional organizations

* foundation and development of professional literature

* increased research activity supplying the discipline with new theoretical frameworks

* new knowledge to deal with issues of technological development affecting the work of organizations and effective management of their records

Research activities are important and necessary if a profession is to continue developing and maintaining its status. In the case of records management, this is indeed taking place now more than ever before.

Always Yours  —-  As usual —  Saurabh Singh

[NOTE:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Berenika M. Webster, BA, MLIS, is a researcher at the School of Information Studies at the University of Northumbria at Newcastle, where she conducts research in the area of records management. She has worked in the information management field for eight years. She is a member of the U.K. Library Association. Her other research interests include scholarly communication and research policy. She recently completed her Ph.D. dissertation on the use of bibliometric tools in evaluation of social sciences. Prior to joining the department in 1998 she worked in academic libraries in the United States, Poland, and United Kingdom The author may be reached at kw@soas.ac.uk. The author wishes to thank Dr. J. Michael Pemberton for e-mail discussions on the nature of professionalism. Also thanks to Catherine Hare and Julie McLeod for commenting on early drafts of this paper. However, all omissions and errors remain the responsibility of the author.
PROFILED, COMPILED & PRESENTED BY SAURABH SINGH, a management scholar, posted this item for letting all management scholars interested in knowing that why management should be called a professional discipline. It is being clearly acknowledged that the work belongs to Ms. Berenika M. Webster, BA, MLIS and it has been posted only for academic purposes with no commercial intention. If any person is interested in using any part of this work, then the permission for same should be taken from the original copyright holder and not from the person who has posted it. The author may be reached at kw@soas.ac.uk and source of same is http://  www. a llbusiness .com/ accounting-reporting/ record-keeping/ 334473-1.html]
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