Nepotism describes a variety of practices related to favoritism; it can mean simply hiring one’s own family members, or it can mean hiring and advancing unqualified or under-qualified family members based simply on the familial relationship. The word nepotism stems from the Latin word for “nephew,” especially the nephews of the prelates in medieval times.



Nepotism is a common accusation in politics when the relative of a powerful figure ascends to similar power seemingly without appropriate qualifications. The British English expression “Bob’s your uncle” is thought to have originated when Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury, promoted his nephew, Arthur Balfour, to the esteemed post of Chief Secretary for Ireland, which was widely seen as an act of nepotism.


Nepotism can also occur within organizations when a person is employed due to familial ties. It is generally seen as unethical, both on the part of the employer and employee.

 In employment

Nepotism at work can mean increased opportunity at a job, attaining the job or being paid more than other similarly situated people. Arguments are made both for and against employment granted due to a family connection, which is most common in small, family run businesses. On one hand, nepotism can provide stability and continuity. Critics cite studies that demonstrate decreased morale and commitment from non-related employees, and a generally negative attitude towards superior positions filled through nepotism. An article from Forbes magazine stated “there is no ladder to climb when the top rung is reserved for people with a certain name.”Some businesses forbid nepotism as an ethical matter, considering it too troublesome and disruptive.

In entertainment

Outside of national politics, accusations of nepotism are made in instances of prima facie favoritism to relatives, in such cases as:  

  • Peaches Geldof’s role as magazine editor in an MTV reality show – produced by a company owned by her father, Bob Geldof.
  • Tori Spelling’s breakout role on Beverly Hills, 90210 as a result of her father Aaron Spelling’s involvement with the show.
  •  Hollywood’s Coppola family includes many distinguished filmmakers and actors. The careers of Sofia Coppola, Nicolas Cage, and Jason Schwartzman have been attributed to aid by director Francis Ford Coppola, who cast his daughter Sofia in The Godfather Part III. Cage changed his last name in order to distance himself from such charges.

Nepotism in india

Often some things are so well knitted in a culture that they become a way of life, one such thing is nepotism in India. Nepotism is just another term for favouritism granted to family members or relatives. In Hindi, Nepotism has been termed as ‘Bhai Bhatijavad or Maa Betavad’. India’s political parties, as well as corporate boards, have always favoured heredity over competency. Basically ‘who’s your daddy’ matters more than ‘what’s your ability’. If a family member holds an authoritative designation then it’s an obvious unquestionable fact that the power will be used to strengthen the family, friends, and relatives. Talk about the extreme north – Kashmir where Abdullah family has succeeded for decades or the centre of the country Delhi – Gandhi family or the extreme south – Tamil Nadu’s Karunanidhi family; Nepotism is everywhere. Rationally analysing one can see that monarchy still exists virtually in this Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic.  

Nepotism is not just confined to the boundaries of politics, it exists even in the fields of entertainment, education, and business. Bollywood and corporate world possess 100s of examples where family members/children get opportunities which are unreachable for some really talented individuals hailing from normal families with no strong background. There have been some really good examples in both the fields where the individuals were so talented that they have taken their family heritage to an entirely new level. But the ones who have been taking advantage of their family background should realise that it’s nothing to be proud of. School or college admissions are also influenced by nepotism which is the worst as it shows the roots exists at the ground level.



APSC Notes brings Prelims and Mains programs for APSC Prelims and APSC Mains Exam preparation. Various Programs initiated by APSC Notes are as follows:- For any doubt, Just leave us a Chat or Fill us a querry