KJ Somaiya (SIMSR) Attends the 2nd NHRDN Summit on CSR @ The Hilton, Mumbai

The National Human Resource Development Network (NHRDN) organized the 2nd summit on Corporate Social Responsibility at The Hilton, Mumbai. The event focussed on the developments on the CSR front in light of the legislations enacted by the Companies Act, 2013 making it compulsory for companies to spend 2% of their net profit on CSR activities in India.

The summit witnessed active participation from industry, academia and bureaucracy alike attracting some of the most eminent names in their spheres. Students from KJ SIMSR were also invited for the event. KJ SIMSR has Cii-Yi Committee which is a subsidiary of Confederation of Indian Industry. Students of KJ SIMSR are often invited for conferences where they get opportunity to learn as well as interact with top notch leaders of industries.

The Keynote address was given by Ms. Lalitha Kumaramangalam, Chairperson – National Commission for Women and the inaugural address was by Mr Bhaskar Chatterjee, Chairman, IICA and was also addressed by Mr. K Ramakumar, President, NHRDN, Executive Director, ICICI Bank and President, ICICI foundation. All the speakers emphasized on the point that CSR should not be looked as a burden or a marketing activity by the companies. They also stressed upon better and professional management of NGOs carrying out the CSR activities of the companies.

The first day of the summit comprised of multiple panel discussions like ‘Creating framework for effective CSR governance‘ and saw participation from leaders of companies like IIFCL, Phillips, Unilever and RBS. They stressed on utilizing the money in the right manner and right direction to make sure that it helps the intended people. The second discussion was on ‘Creating effective CSR partnerships’ and was attended by leaders from TTC, Acumen India, Swades foundation, BNP Paribas and the DC of Gurgaon. They focussed on making the NGOs more accountable, adaptable and transparent. They wanted the corporate partners to focus more on capacity building for their CSR initiatives. The third session was on ‘Building CSR management and Delivery Capacity’. The participants focussed on how to build better management structures for CSR activities while agreeing that CSR should be handled by specialised professionals for greater efficiency.

The second day also had panel discussions like ‘Role of implementation agencies‘. It saw participation from TERI, Yes foundation and the director of MSME clusters. They touched upon a variety of topics such as lessons learnt from ongoing or previous initiatives, motivating employees and top management for active participation in CSR, the importance of communication in CSR and the role of MSMEs. etc. The second discussion was on ‘How to measure, communicate and create better impact’. The participants included Mr. Ashok Pavadia, Additional Secretary and Advisor, Ministry of Home and representatives from Essar foundation, TTC and BIMTECH. The panel discussed about the need for a tool for measuring the performance of the CSR activities. The panel also advised companies to focus on sustainable projects while planning their CSR initiatives. The summit was concluded by presenting of case studies by Maruti Suzuki, Schneider and Mahindra and Mahindra on the CSR initiatives undertaken by them.

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