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Ethics and CSR: The ‘Strategy’ Debate

06-May-2011
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Ethics and CSR: The ‘Strategy’ Debate

Founded in 2002 by well-known business historian Dr Gita Piramal, ‘The Smart Manager’ is counting down to its 10th anniversary as India’s first world-class management magazine. Prof Nitin Nohria, Dean, Harvard Business School, is the Chairman of the magazine’s Advisory Board, and Maneck Davar is its Editor & Publisher.

The magazine is a pioneer in the pure-play management space and has, over the years, won acclaim for its uncluttered approach to practicable management knowledge, straight from industry captains and thought leaders from around the world. It is popular for establishing the Tata Consultancy Services Case Contest as the most rewarding and competitive competition for aspiring and practicing managers in the print media.

‘The Smart Manager’ will appear in a new look and with new features in the May-June 2011 issue on ethics and CSR. The issue will be formally launched at a special event starting on June 3, 2011 in Mumbai.

The ‘Strategy’ Debate
In the context of the recent upheavals in India Inc – many of them intertwined with issues related to public governance – the fundamentals of ethical business in general and ‘corporate social responsibility’ in particular seem poised to acquire a new spin and renewed currency. A socially responsible image has the potential to be part of a company’s conscious risk management strategy. However, many Indian companies do not place explicit emphasis on CSR as a strategic tool, nor is there any overt delinking of it from philanthropy. Part of the reason is that traditionally, Indian businesses have been averse to advertising their good deeds.

Now however, with the latest legislative mood hinting at a mandatory requirement for CSR, we are staring at the extreme opposite scenario. The time is thus right for an all-party dialog on CSR, through the filters of good governance, strategic communication and public-private partnerships. The May-June 2011 issue of The Smart Manager will cover all this through contributions from Rahul Bajaj, Ajay Piramal, Keki Mistry, Harsh Mariwala, Kishor Chaukar, Arun Maira, Rakesh Bharti Mittal, Rajashree and Kumar Mangalam Birla, among others.

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