A Week Full of Trips: Week Five at RBI

A bright and early start saw the group wake up at 8am sharp on an overcast and gloomy Sunday morning in anticipation for our field trip to the National Defence Academy (NDA). The NDA campus was the first military education training centre in the world to comprise of all three services of the military – the Indian Air Force, Army and Navy.  The aim of the campus is to train and develop the future officers of the Indian military, meaning admission to the academy is not only prestigious but also highly selective. Not only do officers study the art of warfare, they are also encouraged to learn a variety of subjects including Maths, Sciences and Foreign Languages. Most recruits also take up physical activities such as horse riding and swimming, with some even excelling at national level. For all we know, we may have passed the Indian Michael Phelps!

The hospitality at the academy was excellent, all the recruits spoke excellent English and introduced us to their famous Iced Coffee. The sprawling green campus was home to 2,400 new recruits and a variety of wildlife including monkeys, snakes, peacocks and hyenas. We received a tour from each respective service, including the opportunity to play on the Ship Simulator at the Navy base. This was a surprise to our supervisor Ramani, who squealed when Luz and Jiseop started pressing random buttons – perhaps not quite understanding the simulation nature of the program!

In regards to the work projects, it was business as usual. All groups have up to this point made sufficient progress. For example, Ben and Jack this week were able to head over to the archives department of the CAB, where the staff were extremely helpful as they provided us with any RBI printed out documents which should prove to be very beneficial for the project. Unfortunately they had to say an emotional goodbye to one of our supervisors who had been very helpful in guiding and supporting us with the project.

On Tuesday the group as a whole were taken to a local slum where we were given the opportunity to hand out relevant questionnaires to the local people in regards to their banking services. The experience of getting deep into a slum was an overwhelming experience for us all, the people were very friendly and the conditions were of course nothing most of us had experienced. It really did put the poverty into perspective.

On Wednesday as part of their project, George and Luz went on a field visit to various commercial banks across Pune, guided by their supervisors who offered translation services. However, these supervisors weren’t quite as helpful as first appeared, insisting that to fully absorb local culture they should try some local “delicacy” from a random shack offering street food.  After eating the mystery food, their stomachs began to feel the full effects and an hour later they were glued to the toilet seat back at campus, with faces as pale as a ghost.

Unfortunately on Thursday we encountered the most difficult and challenging test thus far in the internship – having to wake up at 5am for an exhausting four hour car journey to Mumbai. We arrived around 10am in the sprawling economic city, under the mammoth structure of the RBI central headquarters. This colossal skyscraper towered over the city, providing excellent views of the port of Mumbai when inside. Security was so tight that it felt like we were about to walk into the White House! However, we were a tad early for our meeting so we explored the RBI monetary museum where we saw a wide variety of coins and currency showcasing the history of money throughout India. This was a particularly overwhelming experience for the avid coin-collecting enthusiast that is David , who certainly felt quite at home in the museum.

In the afternoon, we had an informative presentation by two representatives from the ISME accelerator bank who gave us a detailed overview of Financial Technology (FinTech) in India. Whilst this benefitted Joe and Jiseop’s project the most, the presentation was our best to date and captivated everyone, particularly when talking about intriguing and relevant financial topics such as Bitcoins and Blockchain. We were told to stop asking questions as we had to rush back to Pune so we would be in back in time for dinner! We returned exhausted and immediately went to bed, with some choosing to forego dinner.

-Jiseop, Ben and Luz

Bollywood Films, Brownies and Birthdays: Week Four at Bharti Foundation

This week has been fairly quiet as it has involved long days at the office collaborating all of our data we had collected from our week in Punjab last week. We had over 100 graphs, tables and pie charts to fit into a brief presentation next week. After work one day, the girls decided to go and see a Hindi rom com at the cinema. After the vigorous security search when we entered the mall we were greeted with it again going into the cinema. Unlike back home there is no way of sneaking food in as you have to leave your bag behind if you get caught with snacks. Annie found this out the hard way!

After the cinema, we decided we wanted to take a break from the normal curry, roti and rice. We found ourselves back at the famous Cyber Hub. There, we saw a Taco Bell…the British were completely clueless on what it was and eventually discovered how much they are missing out on amazing Mexican fast food.

This week was also Annie’s 21st birthday! We celebrated by ordering an Oreo cake and various other desserts (or as the British say, pudding) …and yes, we got desserts delivered right to our door.

On Friday after our dinner at California Pizza Kitchen, we happened to see a typical Indian concert where the bands were playing hard rock music but the audience didn’t seem to be quite engaged (probably because of the heat??). After all, this was another interesting experience, besides listening to the Hindi music on radios on the roads everyday.

Over the weekend, we went to a unique restaurant. There, they made a dish called “Dodha Brownie Bath Tub”, and when they served it, it was literally brownies in a bathtub. They added in chocolate foam to make the bubbles, and this was probably the best brownie dish we have ever had. The most interesting part was the vessels they served our drinks in. One was served in dried ice, so it was smoking when we got it. And another was served in a glass mug, which is odd for a cocktail. The views from the restaurant were exceptional as we were sitting on the rooftop.

After this we decided to see what else Delhi nightlife had to offer and ventured out further and found ourselves at another bar. There was some fun dancing and, by Indian standards, some expensive drinks! We danced with some very enthusiastic Indians and had a bit of a laugh with them and found their enthusiasm very entertaining.

Two more weeks to go!


Another Week, Another Round of Restaurants: Week Four at SEWA

Hello, my name is Nathan. I am Boston University student entering my third year of college this fall. This week we did lots of things around town in places we have never been to and visited a couple of old favorites in our never-ending pursuit of the tastiest bit in town! Our week consisted of mostly working independently in the mornings and venturing out of campus at the end of the day to try new restaurants suggested to us by the IIM-A students.

This Saturday we joined several summer school exchange students along with a few members of the Heritage Club on campus on a walk around the old city. We made our first stop of several at the Siddi Saiyad Jali Mosque which is the oldest mosque in all of Ahmedabad. It was a beautifully simplistic structure that had a three-walled concept where the rear side of the mosque was open to the air. The structure had a carved stone window in the rear of the mosque that has since been adopted as the local symbol of Ahmedabad. We then proceeded to walk through the streets of central Ahmedabad to see the Bhadra Fortress and through a small market to the Jumma Masjid Mosque. The Mosque is enormous and was the largest Mosque on the entire Indian subcontinent for several years! We walked around the Mosque for about half an hour and then made our way to Ahmedshah Badshah’s Tomb, for which the city is named after. Only men were allowed into the innermost sanctum, with their heads covered, where the tombs of the late leaders lay. We finished off the great walk with a dining experience at the Manekchowk Market. Amongst the chaos and bursting tarps full of rain water precariously hovering over our heads as we ate we were seated and given food. We were served Poha, a type of bread, and a tomato sauce with a healthy knob of butter in the center of the sauce. We also had a meatless version of Dosa and some Thumbs Up Soda to drink. We were then given “Mango Ice Cream Sandwich” which was white bread without the crusts and traditional Indian ice cream. Then another layer of bread is added which is where the Mango sauce is added and a nice helping of shredded cheese. To say the least we were all confused. They paired that sandwich with a chocolate cheese sandwich which was less confusing due to the overpowering nature of the chocolate of which there was a fair amount on that sandwich. It was a fantastic night all around and meeting all the other transfer students was a welcome delight.

Over the next few nights we continued to eat around town and visited Jassi De Paratha for lunch and got it delivered several nights later for dinner. I think we have found a dish we are all fans of. We also went out to dinner at Hyderbadi Hut with some friends we met on the heritage walk. We had several Biriyani between the six of us and had a few other local foods. The following day we went to Punjabi by Heart and ate some Cholle Bhatura and some curries. I had some Mango Lassi that was chilled into almost a custard like consistency that was very refreshing. We even managed to slip in a night of Indian Dominos which was strikingly similar to the US and UK Dominos. To say the least we had a very diverse array of meals this week!

On Tuesday Beanie, Shobhit and I went to the office to talk to Rushi, one of our supervisors, about our presentation and the progress of our research. We received good news that we were on track with our direction and that we were meeting the directives laid out by SEWA. This was good news considering that the presentation we have is approaching quite fast. We also discussed the possibility of another field visit which we were very excited about.

Beyond just working and eating we also got to attend the Annual General Meeting that was held for the SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre. We got to see a Google Executive speak along with the founder of SEWA and the current CEO of SEWA TFC with several others. It was super unique just seeing how they structured their meeting around personal experience of the members and not just the high up executives. I found this to be a very unique and fun approach to something I would generally assume to be a mundane activity.

The highlight of the week was when Kristin made us watch the Game of Thrones Season 7 premiere at our favorite Café-the Project Café.  We met some very nice people there and Liv, Beanie and I all discovered that we were missing out on a great show for years now! It was super fun hanging out with other people who liked the show and coached us through the episode. We had a great week over in  Ahmedabad and are even more excited to see what week five has in store for us!


Birthdays, Bindis and Field Trips: Week Three at SEWA

My name is Kristin and I just finished my first year at Boston University studying Business Administration and Economics. My fellow interns and I are thoroughly enjoying our internship experience and we cannot believe that it is already halfway through. Being Indian American, I have been amazed by learning more about my heritage. Our third week in Ahmedabad, India interning with SEWA has challenged our cultural norms and has exposed us to celebrations of life and culture.

At the start of the week, we celebrated Liv’s 20th birthday. For fun, we ventured to a bangle store to buy bindis (decorative stickers that women wear on their forehead) to wear for the special occasion. The multitude of colors and shapes surprised us and reminded me of my childhood. As per our Indian interns’ suggestion, we had an Indian BBQ feast for dinner consisting of vegetarian and non-veg kabobs and a multitude of desserts. As Gujarat is a non-alcoholic state, we wished Liv into her next year of life with mocktails including Pina Coladas and Cinderellas. I don’t think Liv would have imagined celebrating her 20th birthday with new friends in India, but it was a memorable time.

Our project of expanding the rural garment unit at SEWA has become clearer and we have decided on a distribution strategy. We were very fortunate to meet with Rama Bijapurkar, one of India’s leading consultants on market strategy and consumer behavior. She helped us understand what rural women are looking for when they purchase clothes. In order to compare the modern garments that we will be implementing to the traditional hand embroidered garments, Liv and I ventured to SEWA’s Hansiba store. These intricate and vibrant blouses and skirts were truly exotic—each piece took two years to produce! I have never seen Indian clothes of the past generations, and it was empowering to realize the importance of preserving the traditional hand embroidery in modern garments.

Along with Sakshi (our Indian intern), we travelled to the town of Radhanpur and village of Santalpur (about four hours away) to conduct market research. The women were so welcoming and hospitable as they allowed us inside their homes and served us all kinds of Gujarati snacks and kulfi (Indian ice cream). One woman said they had never had foreigners inside their homes before and were so happy that we came. In Santalpur, we were surrounded by half the village as we were roaming between clothing shops! As we learned of the differences between fabrics, many children came up to us and smiled when we waved at them. The experience was surreal as people were genuinely intrigued and also very helpful. We got a taste of the Indian rural culture and way of life—simple, colorful, and fastly growing. We had a lovely day.

This week we celebrated life with Liv’s 20th birthday and we also celebrated the culture of India through our work at SEWA and especially through our site visit. We hope the next three weeks of our Indian adventure will be as eye-opening and delightful as our first three!


Didn’t Modi Know We Were Coming?? Exploring Delhi During Week Two at Bharti Foundation

After an exciting first week settling in at the office, we were all raring to get out and explore. Friday night we found ourselves back at the familiar Cyberhub. Drinks in Cyberhub are only slightly cheaper than Britain, however be warned as Sam wasn’t too happy to find that his basic beer was more expensive than the girls’ fancy cocktails.

On Saturday we took the very easy to use metro into Delhi-every hour is rush hour on the metro so be prepared to get extra close to the locals. When we got out of the station we were bombarded with rickshaw drivers and taxi drivers insisting on us taking their cab. We got talking to one overly friendly driver who convinced us to walk with him down several shady side streets to his “cab” before we eventually came to our senses and remembered the golden rule our parents had drilled into us from a young age… An Ola cab (very similar to Uber) later and we finally got to do some sightseeing-our first destination was India Gate. We experienced lots of staring and are featuring in many an Indian family photo. The buzz of Indian fame quickly wore off just as the heavens opened and once again we were umbrella-less and drenched to the bone-refreshing though! We’d been advised to go and see the President’s House so ordered an Ola and were on our way. We rocked up to the high security gates and rolled down the window to ask them to open them for us but we were saddened to learn you need permission from the Prime Minister to get in??????? Didn’t Modi know we were coming?????

A couple of hours undergoing the chaos in Delhi absolutely drained us so we called it a day and went back to the hotel and got Dunkin Donuts delivered instead. Baby steps to sight seeing in Delhi…

Back to work on the Monday saw us do a mini practice research project which involved us making questionnaires and then giving another presentation. We also got to enjoy all the June birthdays in the office with a little party downstairs with lots of cake and nibbles which allowed us to mix with the rest of the Bharti employees. Later in the week we went back to Ambience Mall to go try out an Indian cinema-they have spicy popcorn!! As we all got comfy in our fancy recliner chairs an announcement was made, “ladies and gentlemen, please rise for the national anthem!” All taken aback by this we were slow to make it our feet but did so awkwardly and confused whilst everyone around us belted out the Indian song…it was a funny experience.

We’ve been given our official project details so the hard work has begun and 2 weeks of field work to look forward to get us out and exploring more rural India- so no more donut deliveries for us…


Cultural Immersion in Pune: Week Two at RBI

By the second week, the majority of the group have learned the ropes and acclimatized to both the people of India and their immersive culture. This week felt significantly shorter than our first, mainly because it was filled with an assortment of different activities and lectures. On Saturday we ventured out to the Phoenix Mall, which is an upscale mall with many Western outlets and restaurants located near the airport toward the northeast of Pune. We treated ourselves to a competitive game of bowling as well as to the delicious Western food that our stomachs have yearned for after almost 2 weeks of Indian cuisine.

On Sunday, the group split in two with Jiseop and Luz going to our mentor Ramani’s house for avacaya rice and tea. The rest of the boys went to visit Pataleshwar, which is a 7th century cave temple located near the Reserve Bank of India campus. After exploring the cave temple, we ventured to the Shaniwar Wada Palace, which is a historical Marathan fort located in the center of Pune. To top off our day of cultural immersion, David had a traditional red dot painted on his forehead by a local, partially without his consent.

The weekdays were a stark contrast to the office life in the first week as we had many different members of faculty come in to provide lectures discussing topics such as financial inclusion, agricultural banking, and the overall culture of Pune as well as the many different states of India. These lectures were very informative and helped us gain a fantastic historical and cultural insight into India and the Central Bank that we otherwise might not have learnt.

In addition to our lectures, on Thursday we had an unexpected field trip to Solu, which is a small village about an hour’s car ride from the RBI headquarters. We visited the Business Correspondent who provides banking and financial services to the local village of a population approximately 2,000. It was a one-man job conducted by a man whom we called “BC” that provided a service similar to an ATM, with the nearest bank being over 5km away. Over 500 people in this village hold an account with the Business Correspondent, providing financial capabilities to those in rural India. There are over 133,000 similar set-ups in villages across India with over 200 million accounts created in the 5 years since its inception. Afterward, we got a chance to visit the local temple in Alandi where we adhered to local customs and removed our shoes and took many photos with the locals as well as bowed to Ganesh, the Indian deity. We then ventured down to the river for more group photos before returning to the campus.


Our Second Week in Mumbai- Week Two at NISM


Saturday July 1st

Today we headed into Mumbai to do some sightseeing. It was super busy and with us being the only Western people there, literally a whole crowd of Indian people wanted selfies with us. We walked around looking at some amazing colonial architecture and saw the Gateway of India which did not disappoint…

…until the heavens opened and we ended up looking like drowned rats (Memo looked like he’d just won a wet t-shirt competition). But as it’s monsoon season, this is just the usual and after five minutes it stopped and we carried on like before. Walking around the markets, Arran and Max successfully tried their hands at bartering and bought some wavey shades. We then went to Leopold Cafe, an infamous traveller hotspot since 1871, for some dubious looking food and lukewarm Kingfishers.

From there, we went on to the Stock Exchange Bar, as recommended by the interns the year before us, where prices of drinks fluctuate throughout the afternoon. As true finance students, we hedged our risk by making friends with the bartender to ensure fixed prices for our Bombay Sapphires. We sipped G&Ts on the rooftop and people-watched the hustle and bustle of Mumbai city centre, before heading back in an Uber, in which Arran took over the stereo!

Sunday July 2nd

Sunday is meant for rest and that’s exactly what we did on this day. After our first full work-week in India and a fun weekend adapting to the time difference, food, and general way of life, we stayed home for the most part of the day – sleeping and watching TV shows. But most importantly, resting and preparing for the commencement of our research the following day.

Monday July 3rd

After an exciting weekend, the first few days back at work were rather uneventful. In the absence of our supervisor Sandeep, we were a bit rudderless and spent Monday mostly reading papers and narrowing down our research plan. This turned out to be an agonising endeavour, given the broad scope of our topics, and the limited time available to us. As this may not have been the most productive day so far, we’ll instead view it as a helpful exercise in self-reliance and determination. Luckily, we found comfort in our after-work routine of gym and Netflix, and enjoyed a wonderful meal, prepared by our wifi-scrounging friend Kartik.

Tuesday July 4th

Consulting with our other supervisor (Mr. Panda) and Professor Chari on Tuesday proved to be beneficial, as we were able to make incremental progress, although the quest for useable data is still ongoing. In the afternoon, we attended a presentation by several Thomson Reuters representatives, who came to NISM to outline the benefits of (and ultimately sell) their Eikon analytics software. While it was not immediately pertinent to our research project, it did offer us a glimpse into how business is conducted in India and the rep was able to give us a useful introduction to the possibilities of the Eikon software. In the evening we were delighted to receive an invitation to the annual SBI Banking and Economics Conclave, to be held on Thursday. 

Wednesday July 5th

Hump day arrived quickly. We had our regular breakfast around 9am and got ready for another day at the office. Our team met with Dr. Latha Chari, who provided guidance for our research. This day we started diving deeper into our project, and the workday flew by.

After the workday was over, we went over to Inorbit Mall to buy a couple necessary goods, such as underwear (because at this point we’re still figuring out what to do about laundry and toiletries). To reward ourselves for our accomplishments of the day, we made a quick stop at Tight Bar. The friendly manager gave us the iconic Tight shirt worn by the employees there as a gift, along with some shot glasses.  Afterwards, we headed back home to relax and enjoy another chill night before a big day on Thursday.

Thursday July 6th

Today was different. We woke up an hour earlier than usual (and even skipped breakfast) for an important event: the 4th SBI (State Bank of India) Banking & Economics Conclave, held at the beautiful Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, just next to the historic Gateway of India. Bankers, economists, business men and women, and journalists from top institutions in the country attended and formed panels where they debated their opinions and standpoints on issues including demonetisation, the new GST (single tax), and future growth opportunities for India.

Lunchtime finally came and we were starving. Today’s meal could be possibly called one of the best we’ve had in India. The best part was the table of desserts, which included ice cream, different small cakes, and rasgulla.

Friday July 7th

Friday morning has so far been another regular workday at the office. We are continuing our research papers and working on the approach papers that are soon-to-be delivered to our supervisor. We look forward to another fun weekend in India!


Week One at the Bharti Foundation

When we landed we were pleasantly surprised with the organization of Delhi airport. It was super easy to navigate around and we were picked up with no problems at all by the driver from the guesthouse. The roads in Delhi are chaotic to say the least-cows, dogs, people, rickshaws, motorcycles, lorries, funnily enough even cars, were squeezing themselves into any available space on the “road”. The people at the guesthouse are so hospitable and friendly and there is a wide variety of food choices- no Delhi belly yet!

The second day we decided to visit Ambience Mall due to Annie’s lack of everything (Air China lost her bag). We hailed a rickshaw which was an experience in itself. This is the first time we realized how foreigners get ripped off- make sure you agree the price before you get in the rickshaw! Security is very strict at the mall, there are metal detectors and men with intimidating rubber gloves… every brand name you could find in the UK and USA was there.

First day of work: Our office is at the headquarters of Airtel and it’s been considered one of the best places to work in Delhi. We would all agree- it’s very modern, well air-conned and has unlimited free tea, coffee and biscuits. The people here are so friendly and helpful and very keen to give us advice on the do’s and don’ts of Delhi. It’s a very chilled and stress free environment, whenever a meeting takes place, phones are always going off which helped to relax us when we gave our initial presentation.

The cafeteria is amazing, it has a huge variety of food, from Subway to an Indian buffet to a Costa Coffee-we are spoilt for choice. People come and go as they please to the office, mainly to avoid rush hour which we love because it means a lie in! This week we got our first taste of monsoon season which is great for bringing the temperature down however not so great if you get caught out in it…don’t think even an umbrella would have saved us.

We ventured out to CyberHub which is this huge fancy outdoor place with loads of bars and restaurants ranging from Nandos and Dunkin Donuts to Indian food- we went for Hard Rock Café to to mix it up a bit from the usual curry. Looking forward to getting out to explore Delhi this weekend.


Acclimatising to Our New Home: Week One at RBI

To acclimatise to our new unfamiliar home for the next few weeks, we (the Newcastle students) decided to arrive into Mumbai a couple of days  before our internship commenced. We flew out from Heathrow airport on 23 of June at 21:30, arriving into Mumbai at 11:00 local time after a more tolerable 9-hour flight than expected thanks to Fawlty Towers and Shrek on the in-board flight entertainment system.

Just as we thought the journey was almost over, we had to travel four hours by taxi to Pune, however, a long McDonald’s stop made it more bearable. It is fair to say that the urban and rural surroundings on the journey were rather overwhelming as it was nothing like anything we had experienced before-the busy highways, wildlife, inequality in wealth and the views.

Ways we occupied spare time before the internship commenced and in the evenings in the first week included exploring the city of Pune and playing sports such as table tennis, pool, football and cricket. It didn’t take long for a group of locals to challenge us to a competitive game of cricket! As well as this, we were put to shame with our table tennis skills as we challenged some of the RBI workers.

A favourite place to visit in the evenings is a bar called Agent Jacks, the people are extremely friendly and the drinks are very cheap!

In terms of the project, we had an initial meeting with all our supervisors on the first day and we were shown around the fascinating RBI campus which is to be our home for the following six weeks. The campus library seems very useful as it has a large range of textbooks relevant to our group projects. All the Newcastle students and their respective Boston University teammates spent the first week understanding and thinking about the project. We have also been given a couple lectures enlightening us about the Indian culture and the functions of the Reserve Bank of India.

– Jack and Benjamin

Our Final Week with the Reserve Bank of India, Pune

This is it. The end of the internship. The last day in India before we all head off on our own travels.

1The past 7 weeks have been an incredible journey, and as is the cliché, it feels like only a few days ago that we were all arriving to the RBI campus in Pune for the first time. However, since that time we have had many thrills and spills, ups and downs and have learnt plenty about the Indian culture, country and its numerous and diverse people.

Firstly though, we should carry on where the last interns left off and update you all about our final week.

This week revolved around finishing up our reports and preparing to present our findings to the faculty staff at the college. The deadline for the reports was Monday morning meaning that many of us were working over the weekend to finish the analysis of our research and make the last edit and adjustments to the documents.

The culmination of our work had to be covered in a 15 minute presentation on Wednesday morning from which the work was questioned and critiqued by our supervisors, faculty staff and the director of the college. This proved to be a good opportunity for all of the teams to fully explain the process of their research and their findings as well as allowing for us to receive good feedback on our approaches and reports.  The presentations all went well and provided a good source of education regarding our own research topics, but also the topics covered by the other interns.

Finishing this, all of our thought started to turn to what we were doing after the internship had finished with everyo2ne finalizing travel plans with interns preparing travel right across India. However, we all were able to have one last night out before we said our goodbyes and we were able to do it in style as on Thursday night there was an all-India Guns N Roses tribute band performing at the Pune Hard Rock Café.

The past week it has allowed for some reflection on our time in India thus far and we can definitely say, it has been an exp
erience. No more so than for Will, who has managed to watch at least 32 films on the multitude of English movie channels on offer at our accommodation and the cinema next door to us.

Over the past six weeks, not only have we made friends from all over the world, from America to Spain,
to all the incredible locals that made our time in Pune so wonderful.

The internship offered a much richer education then that which was taught directly at the college. It gave us an insight into a
nother viewpoint of life and direct access to the thoughts and aspirations of a country that has a deep desire to become respected and influential on the national stage. This is embodied by the same question you are asked when meeting new people in India, “what do you think of India”. There is a deep curiosity of the thoughts and opinions of foreigners in India and this is usually followed by an a sense of pride at the prospect of students from the US and UK deciding to come and spend time learning in their nation. There is a palpable optimism from the population that things will get better and that Indiadeserves things to get better. This is an ancient civilisation that believes its position is to be at the top international meeting tables conducting and directing world affairs.

The other interesting education point has been during our time here, we have been able to see a very limited snapshot of conditions in India. Through this limited scope it has led us to start comprehending the share size and scale of India and her people, and through this monumental task that is the governance of it. This has been particularly interesting to us as we both have a deep interest in development economics and when considering this size and scale it provides an indication for the difficulty of implementing policy across a nation.

Finally it is our belief that being outside of your comfort zone is the way to develop not only your skills within the working environment, but also to develop yourself as a person. During our stay in India we have definitely been pushed outside of our comfort zones on a number of occasions whether dealing with minor occurrences such as traffic or more serious ones such as differences in cultural and regulatory proceedings.

There have been highs, from meeting truly inspirational people, and lows, such as having to use a leaf when running out of loo roll (Imodium is key people!!!). There have been moments of sheer wonder at the spectacular and raw beauty of India and moments of sadness at seeing the absolute destitution and poverty that unfortunately a large percentage of the population still live in.

It is definitely worth noting however, that we were able to observe some of the challenges that face India, not least of which is how it is going to face it’s demographic head-on. It has the largest number of young people in the world and there are obvious concerns to how there will be adequate employment and education for these people.

We want to thank everyone who has made our trip so special, especially the GEO team and the staff at the RBI. We also want to thank the people of India for there (pretty much constant) hospitality while travelling through their nation.

“When all your wishes are granted, all your dreams become destroyed.”


GEO RBI Interns