Emerging Markets Conference 2015 – A Great Learning Opportunity: Ridhi Agarwal, Ph.D Candidate, IIM Calcutta

I went to the Emerging Markets Conference, held at IMT Dubai in January 2015, with a lot of anticipation. The conference more than met my expectations with its excellent speakers, diversity of content and the presence of senior academicians. With the changing global scenario and the growing potential of emerging economies, this conference came at the right time and I believe, contributed significantly to industry as well as the academic world.

As a student and budding researcher, the conference provided many opportunities for learning and growth. One could choose between a variety of tracks and a gamut of topics according to one’s research interests. The areas varied from digital marketing to branding to sustainable marketing. There were also tracks on pricing, distribution, marketing strategy and promotions. It’s not just that the presentations were of excellent quality, but attending such a conference also helps generate ideas about research topics, opens one’s mind to new streams of studies and provides a wonderful scope for interaction with fellow researchers. On a lighter note, it helps to discuss the challenges and trials that fellow Ph.D. students are facing during their thesis phase, and it is reassuring to see that most young researchers are in the same boat as you.

While presenting my paper on the impact of users’ personality on their Facebook usage, I found the audience to be attentive and interactive.  If there were criticisms, they were positive and constructive in nature.  In fact, I was most pleasantly surprised when a professor actually sent me an e-mail with some papers attached, which he felt could be beneficial for my study!

A special mention must be made of the conference co-chairs and the other senior professors who had stayed back from the Consortium held at the campus. I found most of them to be very approachable and agreeable in nature. They were quite willing to discuss one’s work and provide helpful guidance and tips.

One cannot go for an international conference without taking in the pleasures of new sights and sounds. Dubai has emerged as a global metropolis at par with any European or American city and provided wonderful opportunities for sight-seeing, leisure and shopping! While the desert safari proved to be a fun and exhilarating experience, the Burj Khalifa and the World Islands left one awe-struck. Overall the conference was a complete success and a great learning opportunity.


ridhi-photoRidhi Agarwal is a research scholar at IIM Calcutta. After completing her PGDM from IIM Kozhikode, she started her own venture, which gave her tremendous insights into marketing, management and business. She is a vociferous reader and has dabbled in writing from her college days. Her first paper was published IIMK’s management journal, Spandan. She has also written case studies and presented papers at various academic conferences. Her research interests lie in consumer behaviour, religion and other socio-cultural phenomena.