The Good Politician
Why should I apply? How is this different from other training programs out there?
Unlike other academic or training programs that expect students to take a whole year off, The Good Politician with it’s unique executive nature, allows participants to stay in their current roles and be part of the program. The rigorous ‘learn by doing’ philosophy that this program is based on allows participants to learn during the residentials and instantly practice and apply the learning to their work during field time. It is meant for active practitioners and is designed to help you in your current work.
When does this program start?
The program begins on 15th Aug 2021 and ends in May 2022.
What is the structure of this 9 month program?
The 9 months are divided into 3 trimesters. Each trimester will have a 2-3 week ‘residential’ when participants are expected to spend in person full time with the team and the entire cohort. The ‘residential’ is followed by 12-16 weeks ‘field time’ applying their learning and practicing in their own regions. During residentials along with rigorous academic and skill training, participants will also travel across different regions of the country to experience the diversity of India.
What is the time commitment needed for this program?
Working professionals or active political people can definitely apply as long as they can commit to 7 weeks of in person time and weekly online classes during the rest of the program. The 7 weeks in residentials will be intense. Each of our modules require an extensive set of pre readings to be completed prior. The days will be long with multiple sessions and discussions along with travel. They will also be part of small groups where they complete group tasks together as well be part of regional circles where they work on their field projects together. During the field time, they will apply relevant learning to their field and through weekly online calls, keep working on them. We expect our participants to take their commitment seriously, complete all expected pre readings, project related assignments and work as well as deliver their commitments to their team members
Where will this program happen?
Each residential will happen in different parts of the country. The first ‘residential’ will happen in Delhi and villages of Uttar Pradesh. The second ‘residential’ will begin in Mumbai, some rural villages of Maharashtra and end in Hyderabad. The third ‘residential’ will begin in Bangalore, rural Kerala and culminate in Tamil Nadu. The rest of the time you will be in the field, which is your own area and constituency of service.
What sort of training and curriculum do you provide?
The program provides an interdisciplinary curriculum to cultivate political readiness in our participants. We also use a variety of instructional methods, including peer learning, debates, dialogues, lectures, presentations and on ground immersions. Please refer to our program page for further details on the curriculum and program.
Can I skip a residential, come in a few days late or leave earlier?
No. Each residential and trimester is carefully designed to help the overall leadership development of the participants as well as caters to specific needs and skill sets for the field time. We run short and intense modules over a few days and missing a few days would mean missing a chunk of learning. However, emergencies will be considered on a case to case basis.
Do you provide a degree or certificate?
Yes. Upon completion of the course, you will receive a completion certificate which acknowledges that you attended and completed The Good Politician with us. ISD chose to be an action focused organisation and not an academic institution. Therefore we do not have the accreditations required to issue a formal degree or diploma. Our focus is to provide the right mentoring, support and direction to future political leaders, and we hope to provide that through each of our programs. We believe that is far more valuable that any certification could deliver.
What is the medium of instruction?
Our participants come from across the country and speak varied languages. To make it accessible most of the instruction will be in English and Hindi. We expect that our participants will be able to proficient in either of the two. We will provide all our reading material in both languages. During the course, there will be additional support provided to ensure bilingual instruction. If you have more questions, feel free to write to us.
Do you provide internships or placements with leaders and parties?
No, the Good Politician program or the team does not take responsibility for any internships or post program placements. The program provides ample opportunities to network, interact and hear several political leaders. It is upto the participants to use such opportunities to help their prospects. ISD remains a non-partisan stakeholder.
What does a day during the residential look like?
We come together for a very short time during residentials, so these days are pretty intense. Our days begin fairly early by 6 am with a morning circle with the entire cohort. We then engage in some physical exercise, meditation and shram daan across the campus. After breakfast our days will begin around 8:30 am and will engage with content sessions, meet external speakers, travel etc. Our day ends together with a closing circle with the team around 9:00 pm after which the participants will retire for the day, or engage informally.
What does a day during the field time look like?
Field time differs for each of our participants, based on where they are working. During field time, participants will have weekly touch points online. These will happen mostly over the weekends. Alternate weeks will be sessions with faculty, team and external guests. In the meantime, participants will be expected to send in a few reflections from their field experiences, share progress and also receive need based support.
What are important expectations during the program?
Completion of necessary pre and post work for the trimester
Attendance to residentials and field sessions
Respect towards everyone and integrity towards commitments
What are the boarding and lodging arrangements during residentials?
ISD is a frugal organisation and our travel, lodging and food arrangements are simple and basic. The team and the participants will live in same gender dorms or community rooms during the residentials. Simple vegetarian food will be provided on campus. We will account for food allergies and other medical conditions. Travel will be conducted via sleeper class trains or non AC buses.
How do you ensure safety for participants during residentials and travel?
50% of our team and participants will be women. It is our prime responsibility to ensure all our participants are safe and taken care of. All residential areas are surveyed in advance to ensure all safety precautions are available. During residentials, participants and team members live in same gender dorms together. We travel in groups and ensure that all our people are taken care of. All arrangements for travel will be made in advance and account for special needs. We have strict policies that our team members and participants have to adhere to. Any reported instances of threat to safety, harassment or bodily harm will be immediately addressed and proper action will be taken.