The GS Report

I’m in the process of reading the Goldman Sachs report about what India should do to become a superpower by 2050. Have read some 4 pages of it so far.

The guys who have written the report seem to be the type that aced all their social science exams. They were told they need to come up with 10 points and (as Aadisht mentions) decided to forget the judiciary. 9 is not a nice number from a report perspective and the old social science exam trick came to play. So you have point 2 which says “Raise Basic Educational Achievement” and point 3 that says “Increase Quality and Quantity of Universities”. I would’ve just clubbed both these points under a heading that says “improve education”. No wonder I got only 83 in Social Science in my 10th board.

Then, looking at the other points in general, they all seem so obvious. Maybe they’ve just taken some 10 different editions of the Business Standard which have editorials which tell what India should do to progress, taken 1 point from each and put them together. The only value that this report adds (from what I’ve read so far) is the Goldman stamp.


I read the full thing. It seems like a bunch of interns wrote it. Seems like that from the language. Bunch of interns get a bunch of Business Standard and Mint, and summarize them into ten points. Once interns are gone, their bosses during the internship decide put their work to good use and publish it.

The positive side is that at least once in a while it seems like some use comes out of interns’ work

Update 2

I was discussing the report with Aadisht. He was explaining to me the life cycle of this kind of a report. I thought it’s interesting enough to put up the conversation online. I’m putting the text of the GTalk conversation here. There is a chance that you may not understand our language in certain places. Feel free to ask me about it and i’ll be happy to clarify.

3:59 PM?me: just read the gist of the GS paper; isn’t it fucking obvious?
?Aadisht: there are two things here.
4:00 PM?first is that for junta in general it isn’t
??but for people like us who go on about it it is
4:01 PM?I think this is targeted to CEOs who need bite sized doses of the fucking obvious because detail will kill them
??second thing is that unlike McK these buggers haven’t stuck their neck out and said how much doing each of these will contribute
4:02 PM?on one hand this is fair
?me: thatz crap
?Aadisht: because all these things are interactive
?me: tryign to predict how much each contributes
?Aadisht: so you can’t say put a figure at all
?me: though of course trhat number could be a good excuse to push reforms
4:03 PM?Aadisht: on the other hand by not even giving a range or a min-max
??it’s totally valueless
??doesn’t give any indication of how to prioritise

?me:this looks like the work of some interns da
?Aadisht: Didn’t say it was interesting
??said it was K
? 4:17 PM?me: i’m tlaking about the whole report
? me: ok
? 4:19 PM?this whole report is K in my opinion

??adds zero value
?Aadisht: that
??‘s my point da
??adds zero value to you and me
?me: ah ok
?Aadisht: adds inf. value to CEOs
4:21 PM?Aadisht: See
??You don’t get the picture
??this sort of report
?me: even the language da
??too casual
??definitely the work of interns only
?Aadisht: is part of the Circle of Life for reports
4:22 PM?me: i’ll never use “ballooning” in a formal report!
?Aadisht: some interns will write it
??then some MBA student will download it for a CCS
4:25 PM?or equivalent
??it will go in
??next year some other MBA student on internship will ask him to send it across for his own summer internship report
??It will now be cited as a definitive source
4:26 PM?me: hehe
?Aadisht: It will be presented to a CEO
??who may or may not read it
??but if he does
??he will use it as a source himself
??and tell his flunkies to incorporate it into strategy plans
?me: tipping point
4:27 PM?Aadisht: Then it will go into PPTs for townhalls and presentations to govt.
??or regulators.
??govt will hire PWC GRID to act upon it
4:28 PM?PWC GRID will generate its own, less K report
??this will be ignored and not implemented by the UPA
??but it couldn’t have happened without these two chutes
4:29 PM?You need to appreciate the ecosystem
?me: applause
?Aadisht: and I just realised you should also blog the conversation
?me: i was about to tell YOU to do that
4:31 PM?Aadisht: because my GTalk signed me out I don’t have the whole thing
?me: ok

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