Thursday, February 20, 2020

Managing Nepal’s Labour market : Master of Arts in Labour Studies

Syllabus: Master of Arts in Labour Studies

Managing Nepal’s Labour market
Aiming to tackle issues of labour market of Nepal, Tribhuvan University (TU) introduced Master of Arts in labour Studies (MLS) from the beginning of the year. The course seeks to produce graduates who are  able to mediate different labour issues—ranging from exploitation of labours to union strikes to social perception of jobs and workers’ dignity – and provide feedback for legal and systemic reforms for labour management.

Interdisciplinary course
MLS is an interdisciplinary course comprising of theoretical, philosophical and practical subjects related to the issue of labour, informed Keshab Prasad Adhikari, Coordinator of MLS, Tribhuvan University (TU).

“The course includes core and burning topics of labour—labour economics, labour sociology, labour demography, labour laws and policies, climate change and labour resilience, labour research and methodology, labour statistics, food nutrition and labour efficiency, labour mapping, planning, monitoring and evaluation of employment among many others,” he said.

MLS is a two-year semester based programme where theoretical and practical knowledge will be assessed – it has been introduced as a discipline under the Dean’s Office of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, TU.

Elective subjects are offered in third and fourth semesters where the students have to choose two subjects in each semester from a range of subjects such as Social Dialogue and Negotiation, Labour Movements and Social Transformation, Human Resource Project and Strategy and Labour Mapping among others.

In the final semester, the students are required to do a thesis on their desired topic relating to labour sector which “will carry a six-credit value”.

As per Adhikari, the course is efficient enough in “developing a graduates who will enact professionally in the areas of labour management while playing a crucial role in developing a harmonious relationship between the employee and employer”.

The students will acquire skill of conducting research, planning, monitoring and evaluation of working frame of a company, human resource project, labour statistics to labour mapping and geographic information system (GIS), he added.

Integral  internship
Along with gaining theoretical knowledge, students pursuing MLS also have to complete an internship. However, as the classes are yet to begin, Adhikari informed that they haven’t finalized any fixed structure on where and how the internship will be done. Nonetheless, he assured, “The internship would be of around six months and will begin from the end of third semester.”

He further informed that they have initiated an approach to establish a relation with various sectors like governmental agencies, academic research centres, policy research firms, labour trade unions, corporate houses and other organizations for providing internship opportunities for their students.

“Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI) is willing to take in 50 to 60 students at a time for internship if they found them proficient enough. We are about to sign MoU with CNI while we are preparing to host a meeting with Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) for the same,” he pointed out the progress on the internship programme.

Scope
There is a need to maintain a balance between employment opportunities and aspirations of the labourers, and the MLS was designed for the same.

Adhikari added that proper management of labour is a complex issue. “This need to be take care of by people who have the knowledge and background to deal with these issues from a learned perspective,” he shared, pointing out the roles MLS-graduates could play for labour management.

The Dean’s Office has also initiated a process to have its students work under ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security. “There is a positive response from the Ministry as well. They are ready to accept our student for the work of evaluating and analyzing the loopholes in the law and policies set by the Ministry. They are seeking students who would assist the Ministry in its day-to-day work,” revealed Adhikari.

> Fee Structure: Rs 2,00,000 (for four semesters)
> Criteria to apply: Students who have completed Bachelor’s degree in any discipline approved by TU are eligible to apply for the course and are enrolled upon passing the admission tests conducted by the Dean’s Office itself.
> The admission forms are being distributed till February 23

source: The Himalayan Times, Education Times, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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