Arun Duggal ESG Centre for Research and Innovation
Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad

Arun Duggal Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG)
Centre for Research and Innovation

The Arun Duggal Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) Centre for Research and Innovation at IIMA has been set up to contribute to the development of the nascent ESG ecosystem in India and help Indian enterprises and organizations integrate ESG into their core business and investments decisions. In doing so the Centre shall contribute to the transition of businesses towards the future of capitalism defined by stakeholder orientation with a focus on long-term enterprise value, shared societal prosperity, and a sustainable relationship with the planet.

The incorporation of Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance goals as one of the core tenets of businesses across the globe was spurred in 2005 when UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan rallied leading financial institutions of the world to evolve frameworks that incorporated these metrics. Today, investors around the globe use non-financial ESG metrics, along with traditional financial metrics, to evaluate corporations; identify material risks and determine the future long-term financial performance of companies.

The ESG criteria are a set of non-financial performance indicators along the dimensions of environmental sustainability, social responsibility, and corporate governance embedded deep within the strategy and operations of the organization.

Recently, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) also announced mandatory disclosures through the Business Responsibility and Sustainability Report (BRSR) for top 1000 list companies, and the Stewardship Code for mutual funds and alternative investment funds. These regulations along with substantial interest from the investor community and changing consumption-preferences of society at large is steadily driving ESG conversations to the boardrooms of companies across multiple sectors in India.
Vision & Mission

The Centre aims to be a Centre of Excellence fostering sustainable and ethical organizations defining the future of responsible capitalism.

The Centre will focus on facilitating cutting-edge research and dialogue to improve the ESG performance of organizations and enterprises, while nurturing an ecosystem for stakeholder capitalism in India.

Centre Focus Areas

Driven by the mission statement, during its initial years of operation, the Centre shall focus on developing its capabilities in select areas of ESG integration - in line with global trends while being equally mindful of the contextual realities of India.

1. ESG Impact on Organisations: Materiality, Enterprise Value and Risk

A core focus area of the Centre will be to initiate and support empirically grounded research to contribute to the emerging state-of-the-art scholarship on how ESG factors impact organizations which includes — materiality assessment, impact on long term enterprise value, and overall risk profile of organizations.

2. ESG Reporting, Transparency, and Data Infrastructure

The ESG Centre at IIMA will actively engage with multiple stakeholders to help develop the ESG data infrastructure, fine-tune the ESG measurement frameworks, reporting structures, and impact assessments methods to fit with the requirements of the Indian enterprises and organizations.

3. ESG and Investment Stewardship

The ESG centre at IIMA shall aim to develop an informative index of ESG performance that is empirically grounded and based on a deeper qualitative understanding of the operations and contextual factors for Indian enterprises and organizations.

4. ESG and Corporate Social Responsibility

The Centre at IIMA shall support research and investigations to develop insights on linkages between the company’s CSR initiatives, associated performance along ESG dimensions, and evaluation of the impact on overall enterprise value and risk profile.

Centre Activities

Research and Insights

The Centre shall support research projects aligned with the core mission and focus areas. Research support could include competitive research grants, fellowships, and support for doctoral research. The Centre may also support data procurement and data collection activities through surveys, interviews, and other electronic means to curate primary and secondary data to support research activities. A core research outcome shall be the development of an India specific ESG metric.

Advisory and Consulting

The Centre will actively engage with companies, investors, and other organisations on short-term consulting projects and advisory services that leverage the core strengths and scholarship developed at the centre. Advisory services will also include the enterprise-level application of the metrics, methods, and frameworks developed at the Centre.

Training, Outreach, and Knowledge Dissemination

The Centre will support the design and development of teaching and training materials including but not limited to case studies, simulations, multimedia content, and other novel pedagogical tools. These teaching content and material shall be used in teaching and learning programmes conducted by the centre and its affiliates. The Centre will conduct periodic outreach and knowledge dissemination activities like expert webinars, public talks, and panel discussions. The Centre will also conduct a flagship annual conference on ESG, with the goal become an influential regional platform for sharing research, insights, and conversations among scholars, practitioners, policymakers, and the media.

Advocacy and Impact on Policy Design

The centre will facilitate dialogue and knowledge sharing between the multiple public stakeholders in the country to help in evidence-based policy design and standards-setting for the ESG ecosystem in India.

Chairpersons
 

Professor Anish Sugathan

Professor Naman Desai

 
Executive Committee Members

Professor Abhiman Das

Professor Chitra Singla

Professor Rama Mohan Turaga

Professor Sunil Sharma