image dimensions the perceived quality product and service attributes overall

Image dimensions the perceived quality product and

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image dimensions (the perceived quality – product and service attributes; overall brand image – symbolic attribute; and perceived value for money (VFM)) of the business school which can affect the preference, the willingness to pay a price premium and choice of a business school brand (behavioral indi- cators/outcomes of brand equity) (Keller, 1993 ). The empirical research con- ducted with prospective students as stakeholders aims to assess the perceived brand equity of the selected Indian business schools and study the relationship among variables suggested in this framework. The relationships established in this research can be used to improve business school positioning to influence students’ preferences toward a school and also their actual behavior (probability of joining the school and willingness to pay the fee premium). Research questions (1) How do the various independent and dependent measures of customer- based brand equity (CBBE) relate to each other in business school brand decisions? (2) How well can the brand equity measures predict the actual ranking of business schools as done by external agencies? The paper is organized into six sections. The second section that follows describes the current scenario of Indian business schools. The third section pro- vides a review of relevant literature on brand equity. The methodology and fra- mework employed in the empirical study is presented in the fourth section, followed by study results in the fifth section. The sixth section gives con- clusions, implications and suggestions for future research. Indian business education The Indian higher education sector is heterogeneous with different types of institutions coexisting and facing challenges of sustaining and communicating their quality. Hence the branding of education institutions is expected to become Journal of Marketing For Higher Education 177 Downloaded by [Sapna Popli] at 08:08 20 December 2013
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more important and vital for their growth and survival (Harsha & Shah, 2011 ). The first full-time management program in India was introduced in 1957 by Andhra University. Foreseeing the demand and importance of management education, the All India Institute of Management and Social Welfare, Kolkata and Delhi University started their management programs in 1958, followed by the setting up of IIM Calcutta and IIM Ahmadabad in 1961 and 1962 in col- laboration with the Sloan School of Management (MIT) and Harvard Business School, respectively. Many other business schools including other IIMs (Indian Institute of Management) and XLRI (Xaviers Labour Relations Institute) emerged in the 1960s and 1970s. By 1990, 82 university-based departments and business schools were functioning in the country. Newer IIMs were also established in Lucknow, Indore and Kozhikode by the end of 1990s (Sinha, 2006 ). However, post-1991, there was an unparalleled growth in the Indian management education sector and the number of business schools increased from about 100 in 1988 to over 200 in 1993, nearly 800 in 2003, 1052 in 2005–2006 and approximately 1940 by 2010 (Kumar & Dash, 2011 ).
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