Kavil Ramachandran

Kavil Ramachandran

Dr Kavil Ramachandran (Ram) is widely known for his academic and institution building initiatives on entrepreneurship and family business fronts. He has been a Professor of Family Business, Entrepreneurship and Strategy and has 36 years of combined experience as an academic at the Indian School of Business (ISB) and the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

He did his Ph.D. from the Cranfield University, UK and has done research on family business, entrepreneurship and strategy; has authored/ edited seven books, several book chapters and published extensively in reputed Indian and overseas journals. He has presented research papers at all major international conferences and delivered keynote speeches at business and academic conferences in Asia and Europe. He has directed and produced a short film and a highly appreciated quiz programme, both on family business. He has authored several case studies, interacted with several well-known family business leaders and global experts, and has consulted on transformation of family business. He has taught family business at universities in Germany, UK and Switzerland. His special expertise is in managing the challenges at the interface of governance, professionalization and strategy, particularly in rapidly growing mid-size multi-generational family businesses.

Ram considered it as a responsibility as well as opportunity to facilitate transformation of family businesses in India that collectively constitute the bulk of Indian businesses. He was the first Chair Professor and later the Executive Director of the Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise at the ISB until passing over the baton to a worthy successor at the end of December 2021. Ram is currently the Senior Advisor, Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise and Professor of Entrepreneurship. Ram is widely considered as one of the pioneers to propagate the message of building multigenerational family businesses in India.

Ram has demonstrated special interest in mentoring young members of business families. He took the initiative in ISB to offer a new MBA level programme for the next generation members of business families (PGP MFAB) and was adjudged the "Faculty of the Year" by students in 2018 and 2019. In 2022, he was conferred with the Bharat Asmita Acharya Shreshtha Award (Best Indian Teacher in Management) by MIT World Peace University, Pune.

Ram is a frequent speaker to communities of family businesses in India and abroad, and writes for business and popular media regularly. He has served on various advisory committees of the Government of India, World Bank and Securities and Exchange Board of India. His book "The 10 Commandments for Family Business" has been considered as one of the best books in this area. He has been a pioneer academic entrepreneur, propagating the message of strengthening family business in India and outside.

As an institution builder, he has contributed in various capacities to the evolution of the Indian School of Business as one of the best business schools in the world. He has been a founding faculty and the founding head of the Centre for Entrepreneurship, and later Associate Dean, and Chair of various committees over the years.

Recognizing the contributions to institution building under the leadership of Ram in this area, ISB was rated as one of the best 25 business schools for family business in the world by Family Capital in 2015. He was mentioned as a "Star Professor" in that report. The Thinkers Leadership Magazine listed Ram as one of the top 100 management thinkers in India in 2014 and 2015, the only years it did such a listing. In 2022, Ram was listed amongst the top family business influencers in the world in the academics' category by Family Capital. The combined effect of the multiple initiatives is the creation of a reassuring positive atmosphere in India towards family businesses in general and their sustainability across generations.

Recognizing the need to have a formal organization to create awareness and strengthen capabilities of academics on entrepreneurship education, he took the initiative to form the Society of Entrepreneurship Educators (SEE) in 2003.

Date of Birth: December 08, 1955