Academy | History

History

Parth J Shah, founder and President of CCS, was introduced to the works of Ayn Rand by a friend during college. He starting reading the Fountainhead and quickly moved on to read most of her other works. His friend also gave him books by Milton Friedman and Ludwig von Mises.

Through these ideas, Dr. Shah became inspired about the possibilities of a free society and began to see that correct policies where a way to solve many of society's problems. He decided to switch tracks from pharmacy to pursue graduate studies in economics and gained his PhD in Economic from Auburn Albama, USA, in 1991.

After teaching as a professor of economics at the University of Michigan, Dr. Shah decided to start a liberal think tank in his home country India. He had assumed that, by sheer statistical odds, there would be a few classical liberals in a country of a billion people. But he realised early on that it was very difficult to find people to do public policy research and analysis from a classical liberal point of view. It became clear that his first step for CCS would be to developing its own thinkers and advocates for what we call our second freedom movement.

CCS launched its first training seminar for college students in the fall of 1998 called the Liberty & Society Seminar, a four-day residential program on liberal principles and policies. Thirty students from ages 18-25 attended. CCS has since connected with thousands of talented and enthusiastic students, journalists, activists, and young leaders to introduce them to and increase their understanding of liberal principles.

In 2001, CCS started the Researching Reality Internship Program to provide a valuable learning experience in real-life application of social and economic principles and in teaching college students the skills of research, analysis, writing, and above all critical thinking.

In 2008 LLS was renamed I, Society & Public Policy (ISPP). Graduates had the opportunity to participate in advanced seminars like Advanced Liberty for Change Seminar (ALCS), Austrian Economics Seminar, Communication Freedom Workshop (CFW).

In 2009 CCS organised the first Certificate Course on Public Policy for Journalists (CPPJ) to equip journalists with objective tools to understand and evaluate policies so as to increase the number and quality of ethical and informed reporting on public policy issues.

In 2010 CCS organised the first Colloquium inspired by the internationally acclaimed and much coveted Liberty Fund Conferences. The aim of the Colloquium is to create a conducive environment for in-depth discussion to examine, refine, and extend their own ideas in questions of liberty and responsibility.

Finally, to simplify and clarify the course structure, I, Society & Public Policy and CPPJ have been grouped under one heading and the name was shortened to ìpolicy certificate courses in public policy for different groups such as Young Leaders, Development Leaders, Journalists, and Corporates. Liberty & Society Seminar has also been reinstated as a more advanced but parallel course, which focuses more on liberal philosophy.

Besides these course courses, the Academy also organizes occasional fests and competitions such as essay contests and Freedom Caravan.