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Post-Graduate Diploma in Development Management - Tata-Dhan Academy

Time for a Development (D) School

Development is a profession today. Development management has become a specialised area of study. Madurai?s Tata-Dhan Academy offers a Post-Graduate Diploma in Development Management for those interested in becoming development professionals. The two-year diploma helps nurture the skills, values, and ethics necessary for understanding rural livelihood opportunities and for working with India?s poorest communities.

This programme is for those people who are interested to work with the society. And they make a choice voluntarily to work in the sector. The sector would throw up many challenges for which they should be ready to face. Students who complete this diploma are exposed to grassroots-level realities and the dynamics of poverty and social changes at the micro-level. This micro-level knowledge is reinforced by macro-level courses in government policies, macroeconomics, globalization, and India?s legal environment. Along with theoretical knowledge, students learn practical managerial techniques and tools to build people?s organizations, promote livelihood development activities, and motivating groups.

Tata-Dhan Academy is the only development school in India with a mission of creating development professionals to work with the poorest sections of society. Graduates of the academy work with organisations which work directly with the community. To date, six batches of students have graduated from the Academy and are working with organizations such as the Foundation for Ecological Security (FES), the South Indian Federation for Fishermen Societies (SIFFS), Shramik Bharti, and Dhan Foundation.

Students of the Academy come from all over the country undergo the programme. The students come from states like Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh etc and even from Assam & Manipur. Students usually take up the field work in their respective states. They work on issues and mobilise communities on various issues during their Development Practice Segment. All the students are placed in Designated Development Organisations after completion of the programme, where they work on Microfinance, livelihood, community radio, health, ICT etc.

Because students who are interested in working for the society should not be hindered by financial constraints, all participants receive a fellowship to cover their education, hostel accommodations, food, and even out of pocket expenses.

Tata-Dhan Academy?s residential programme is divided into four segments: preparatory, classroom, fieldwork, and development practice. Students also partake in a two-week village stay, a five-day English and mathematics remedial class, a three-day computer appreciation course, and yoga lessons. The entire programme is concentrated around five disciplines. They are Basics of Development, Technology for Development, Management for Development, Communication for Development and Leadership and Institution Building. At the end of the programme, students attend development tour during which they interact with development leaders and absorb the motivations, values, and enthusiasm that these leaders have to share about community development work. Field exposure is integral to the Academy?s curriculum; accounting for over 60% of the entire programme. This curriculum feature ensures that students can practice their classroom knowledge under the supervision of experienced faculty and development experts.

After completing the programme students are placed in Designated Development Organisations (NGOs). The Organisation thus designated would be providing them a good remuneration, an excellent growth opportunities and an opportunity to work directly with the communities. Most of the students are placed at the executive level.

Admission procedure

Graduates or post-graduates in any discipline with 50% marks are eligible for admission. Those appearing for final degree examinations can also apply. Applicants must also be under 26 years of age as on 30th June, 2008. Applications from professionals and candidates working in development organizations are encouraged. Selection is based on a written admissions test (DMAT) held on 17th February, 2008. Selection Camps will be held in April. For the final selection stages, students undergo a one-day rural exposure visit, partake in group discussions, and complete a personal interview.


Application forms and further details can be obtained from The Admissions Coordinator, Tata-Dhan Academy, Pulloothu, Madurai 625 010. For more information phone us at 0452-2475318/2475219, email us at, or visit our website at

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