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XLRI Hosts 2nd Social Entrepreneurship Conclave

20th February, 2019

XLRI- Xavier School of Management recently hosted the '2nd Social Entrepreneurship Conclave'. The conclave, anchored by the Social Initiative Group for Managerial Assistance (SIGMA), XLRI was planned under the aegis of Prof. Madhukar Shukla, Chairperson, Fr. Arrupe Centre for Ecology and Sustainability (FACES) in association with Tata Steel.

The theme of this year's conclave was - 'Entrepreneurship for Urban Sustainability'. The two-day Conclave brought together industry stalwarts, practitioners and academicians hosting insightful discussions on the topic. The conference was participated by fifteen renowned practicing social entrepreneurs in fields of energy, education, agriculture, and market-linkages who shared their views and ideas on themes such as urban governance, initiatives for livelihood assistance, how to enable education and health for all, waste and pollution management, and protecting the core environment.

The conclave was inaugurated by Dr. Jagan Shah, Director, National Institute of Urban Affairs. He delivered the key-note address, where he spoke on the broad aspects of urban sustainability. The first day's sessions included discussions on the topics of urban governance, access to basic social services, and protecting the core environment. The first topic on urban governance saw discourses by Dr. Poornima Dore, Head, Data Governance, Tata Trusts; Mr. Sourav Roy, Chief of CSR, Tata Steel; and Ms. Sophie Charrios, Vice President, Oikos International. The panelists spoke about the issue in an Indian context, the emergence of data and technology, and the need for a visionary leadership in urban governance. The second topic for the day was on access to basic social services where the panel of speakers consisted of Mr. Thomas Pullenkav, Technical Lead, SELCO Foundation; Ms. Pratima Joshi, Co-Founder and ED, Shelter Associates; and Mr. Saransh Vaswani, Founder and Director, Saajha. Here, the speakers focused on solar energy solutions, sanitation solutions and the services at government schools. The third topic was on protecting the core environment whose speakers were - Mr. Shubhendu Sharma, Founder & Director, Afforestt; Ms. Shubha Ramachandran, Founding Member, Biome Solutions; and Mr. Arun Krishnamurthy, Founder, Environmentalists India.

On the Day 2, two sessions were held on the topics like- strengthening the informal workforce and waste and pollution management. The first session of the day discussed on the topic on strengthening the informal workforce saw sessions by Mr. Krishnavtar Sharma, Co-founder and ED, Aajeevika Bureau; Ms. Pritha Dutt, Director, Empower Pragati; and Ms. Barsha Poricha, Director, CURE. The session focused on improving livelihoods for vulnerable local communities. The final panel on waste and pollution management saw speeches by Mr. Sourav Roy, Chief of Sustainability, JUSCO; Ms. Nalini Shekhar, Co-founder, Hasiru Dala; and Ms. Odette Katrak, Co-Founder, Beautiful Bengaluru. The session came with learnings around how each individual can contribute towards reducing waste and pollution.

Talking about the conference, Prof. Madhukar Shukla, Chairperson, Fr Arrupe Center for Ecology & Sustainability (FACES), XLRI and the coordinator for the conference said, "Social entrepreneurship, which aims at development and implementation of innovative ideas in order to improve the social, cultural or environmental landscape, is the need of the hour. It is all about recognizing the social problems and achieving a social change by employing entrepreneurial principles, processes and operations. The two-fold aim of sustainability and societal impact can be achieved through synergistic execution, for which open communication and sharing of ideas is critical. At XLRI, we have always tried to provide the ideal platform for the exchange of ideas, to derive solutions to problems through discussions and interactions. This year's conclave was a great success. The conclave brought together budding social entrepreneurs and students who interacted on a common platform."


SIGMA (Social Initiative Group for Managerial Assistance) is student run social collaborative group at XLRI which run under the able guidance of Professor Madhukar Shukla. SIGMA focuses on transformation and change in the social sector by contributing to the community and impoverished sections of the society. This is done through a number of events across the year which are executed by a 10-member team dedicated to making positive contributions to the community.

Its events include Blood and stem cell donation camps, Paper recycling and food wastage prevention drives, spreading legal literacy amongst village inhabitants across Jamshedpur, conducting Basic computer learning courses for under privileged children.

Apart from that, SIGMA also holds national and international reach as they execute research projects in association with national NGOs such as Goonj, helping Hearts and Seeds and international NGOs such as OIKOS to help impoverished communities become self-sustaining through sales enablement services and supply chain optimisation. SIGMA also ties up with corporate houses such as TATA Steel to hold case study competitions where the best minds from top tier B schools across the country come together to solve national problems such as water conservation and renewable energy.

SIGMA also works to cultivate and boorish the growing community of social entrepreneurship by providing a platform for information exchange, networking and discovery of rising figures in the field through events such as the Social Entrepreneurship Conclave and National Conclave for Social Entrepreneurship. Award winning entrepreneurs come and share their story and make it a melting pot of ideas and collaboration.

About XLRI

XLRI-Xavier School of Management, Jamshedpur is a premier, private management institute in India founded in 1949 by Fr Quinn Enright, S.J. in the 'steel city' of Jamshedpur (www.xlri.ac.in). Over the last six decades, the institute has grown into a top-ranking business management school of international repute with a wide portfolio of management programs and research publications. Its alumni are spread around the globe and have demonstrated responsible business leadership in their organizations. XLRI continually strives to contribute its mite to the professional growth and management of numerous organizations and institutions across industry sectors. XLRI has been awarded two prestigious International Accreditations, viz., AACSB - The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business and AMBA - Association of MBAs. XLRI has also earned the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) accreditation.