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IIMA and PwC India join hands to establish research and innovation forum

The Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIMA), a premier global management Institute, in collaboration with PwC India, announced the establishment of the ‘PwC ESG Research and Innovation Forum’ today. This ESG Forum has been set up for an initial period of five years, facilitated by the efforts of IIMA Endowment Fund (IIMAEF).

PwC ESG Forum at IIMA is envisaged to be an avenue for knowledge sharing and exchange among the ESG stakeholders; driven by a marquee event or series of events that the Forum will host at IIMA. This initiative comes as a step towards contributing to India’s commitment to the net zero agenda and upcoming BRSR regulations by widening and deepening the sustainability impact in the Indian industry.

Emphasizing the need for more ESG focused collaborations and conversations, Professor Errol D’Souza, Director, IIMA said, “ESG has become a mainstay in every boardroom discussion and is being looked at as a quality standard that determines capital allocation, investor valuation, capacity building and the overall sustainability quotient of the company. Although ESG incorporation in India is in a nascent stage, the room for growth is tremendous. This scenario makes the need for a forum – a common platform for stakeholders across the spectrum – compelling. We are happy to partner with PwC to launch this Forum and are confident that it will provide the much-needed action space for academia, industry, think tanks and policymakers to come together, deliberate on best practices and devise a roadmap that is aligned with ESG goals, globally.”

Supported by a high calibre faculty pool and strong research credentials, IIMA has been at the forefront of leading initiatives that have the potential to educate and influence scholarship, practice, and policy. The understanding and need for ESG discussions have moved beyond just ‘purpose’ or CSR for companies, towards creating positive change with tangible plans towards stakeholder capitalism. This Forum will play an important role in initiating the right conversations within the ESG space in India and in contributing towards thought leadership in ESG research, industry use cases and timely policy interventions.

Sanjeev Krishan, Chairperson, PwC in India said, “ESG is gaining prominence in terms of the Government’s agenda be it achieving the Net Zero target by 2070, the NDC commitments for 2030, the extended product responsibility regulations and SEBI’s BRSR regulations around reporting and disclosures. Achieving this requires a platform approach which brings together relevant stakeholders to ideate, align initiatives and develop roadmaps for achieving interlinked goals. Moving beyond strategy and expediting actions will be key to making an impact.

We are proud to join hands with IIM-A to provide a forum to foster meaningful conversations, empower stakeholders with adequate research, enable thought leadership to build alliance ecosystems and raise resources to plan and execute ESG-led transformation. We believe

partnerships of this nature will play a significant role in bolstering the nation’s ESG agenda and help in meeting the climate goals.”

PwC Global is focusing on turning ESG theory into action by helping create outcomes that drive value and fuel growth, whilst strengthening our environment and societies. This Forum will be instrumental in bringing together a community of solvers (environmentalists, sociologists, economists, strategists, technologists), industry, and academia – to work towards finding solutions that can be embedded into various business functions effectively and for the long term.

This collaboration between the Institute and PwC has been facilitated by the IIMA Endowment Fund (IIMA EF) – the Institute’s unified fundraising and philanthropic arm that facilitates all donations given to IIMA.

On facilitating the setting up of the ESG Forum at IIMA, Chhavi Moodgal, CEO, IIMA EF said, “IIMA Endowment Fund focuses on continuously identifying opportunities in which IIMA wants to build academic and research capabilities – particularly topical themes like sustainability which will be relevant from a public policy and industry perspective over many years. Accordingly, we have also been instrumental in identifying corporate collaborations for the Institute. We are pleased to announce another concrete step towards shaping the ESG ecosystem in India through the PwC ESG Forum. This Forum will be an important platform to support dialogue and dissemination of cutting-edge research to improve ESG performance of Indian organizations and enterprises. We hope that the industry-academia collaborative effort of this Forum will help in spreading the word on ESG themes and research globally. We thank Sanjeev Krishan and the PwC India team for this contribution to IIMA.”

The IIMA EF is the first of its kind at any B School in the country. It has been instituted to provide funding support for IIMA’s initiatives in strategically building thought leadership, research and academic excellence, globally.

CT Bureau

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