ISRO is an organisation that Indians are justifiably proud of; as this article points out, Indians are less cynical about ISRO and it had the lowest employee turnover for any government department as of 2003; and, I guess, it still does.

Take a look at the ISRO Wiki page for the history and achievements of ISRO, and this article by Dr. Kasturirangan (pdf) for some interesting early history.

As successful as ISRO is, how efficient is it? Some economic aspects of ISRO is analysed here, for example. Apparently, a new book, The economics of India’s space programme, analyses the economics of ISRO in greater detail. The review by S Chandrasekhar in today’s Hindu calls it a path-breaking book:

Sankar’s appraisal is neither eulogistic nor unnecessarily critical. By sticking to facts and data and allowing them to speak for the programme, he has brought rigour into the process of economic scrutiny. This is a work of scholarship that should be read by all people interested in the Indian space programme.

Here is another write-up on the book by D Murali in BusinessLine.

The bottom line? Indian space programme is very cost effective, and the efficiency can further be increased by increasing the number of flights per year. Though this is not surprising (see this Wired article for example), a proper analysis is always welcome. So, it probably is a good time to say “Kudos” to ISRO, and wish them all the best for their future endeavours!