Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pre-trip perceptions

I will be traveling to India from January 4-14, 2010 with the purpose of studying the global business of technology development and management, along with learning more about Indian culture in general. I'll use this blog to relate some of my experiences and thoughts while I'm in India. In this first post I'll discuss some pre-trip perceptions I have of India. Currently, everything I know about India has come through watching documentaries (The Story of India by PBS, etc...), reading about the country in various newspapers and media websites, and talking to people who have both visited the country and have lived in the country.

I am going into this expecting it to be much different and more intense than previous travels to various countries in Europe and China. From what I've been able to gather so far, I am convinced that the Indian culture is very strong and deeply rooted in tradition but varying from region to region. I expect to see a lot of poverty alongside a lot of wealth. From talking with people, I expect this disparity to be very present and obvious, specifically in the larger cities where the population density will probably be greater than anywhere else I've visited. It will be interesting to see how the two economic classes perceive and interact with each other.

I'm interested in studying BPO and technology development in India, I know India is one of, if not the largest provider of these services, but I don't believe I have a good feel for how this fits into the overall Indian culture. Will I notice individuals who work in these areas and be able to tell them apart from those who don't? Does the role India is taking in these areas create a great sense of pride, or is it just an industry they have managed to corner the market in and see it as nothing more than a job? What are the future plans to grow this industry or use this success to apply it to bring different industries to the country? I am interested to see how the overall culture relates to the business culture.

In general, I'm expecting it to be very crowded, loud, a lot of traffic, and less sanitary than what I'm used to. I'm also expecting kind people (for the most part), good food, unique items in the markets, and a lot of different sights, sounds and smells (good and bad). I am very excited to take on this adventure. I believe I will take a great deal from this experience and am very happy I have the opportunity to take part in this.