The Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA) announces the launch of the Ashank Desai Centre for Leadership and Organisational Development (ADCLOD). The endowment for the Centre has been contributed by Mr. Ashank Desai, Founder, and former Chairman, Mastek who is an IIMA alumnus and a member of the Governing Board.
Announcing the launch, Professor Errol D’Souza, Director, IIMA said, “We are delighted to announce the launch of the Ashank Desai Centre for Leadership and Organisational Development at IIMA. Leaders across the world have been facing a multitude of complexities, with the role of a leader and what they are expected to deliver undergoing a transformation over the last few years. Through the Centre, our faculty will research on the changing dynamics of leadership and translate the outcomes into knowledge that will equip leaders with best practices for improvement. I would like to thank Mr. Ashank Desai for his generous contribution, which will allow us to advance IIMA’s plans to address this crucial global requisite.”
Sharing his views on the contribution made, Mr Ashank Desai said, “I was always fascinated by the process of leadership creation, leadership impact and success. I am convinced that it is THE key to nation building and prosperity. I always wanted to give back to my Alma Mater, particularly because my organisation, Mastek’s idea was incubated in the IIMA premises along with my other founder colleagues who were classmates. I would like the Centre to organise roundtables with leaders in the wide variety of themes that the Centre plans to work in, seminars on leadership issues, conduct cutting-edge research and create leadership paradigms which are global in terms of relevance yet deeply rooted in Indian context of our history, traditions, and societal values. Also, I hope the work of ADCLOD will enable creation of a leadership curriculum for IIMA long-term courses.”
The Centre is chaired by Vishal Gupta, Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour at IIMA. Sharing his views on the purpose of the Centre, Professor Vishal Gupta said, “The Centre aims at promoting rigorous research and to initiate dialogue about leadership and organisational development issues in various kinds of organisations: public, private and social sector. Along with research, the Centre also aims to create opportunities where faculty, practitioners and policy makers can come together, brainstorm and find solutions to pressing leadership and organisational issues. We are confident that over time the Centre will create a name for itself as a high-quality research centre.”
A virtual ceremony is being hosted to launch the Centre and will be attended by leaders from the industry and academia. Distinguished guests and speakers at the event include Hayagreeva Rao, the Atholl McBean Professor of Organizational Behaviour and Human Resources at Stanford University; Mr. Manvinder (Vindi) Singh Banga, Padma Bhushan, Former Chairman and Managing Director at Hindustan Unilever Ltd, currently a Partner at CD&R LLP; and Rama Bijapurkar, a renowned consultant, and Professor of Management Practice at IIMA.
The Centre has a group of 12 faculty members from varied disciplines such as communication, education, economics, human resource management, law, organisational behaviour, and strategy who are working on leadership and organisational development issues. In order to give opportunities to scholars as well as practitioners to voice their concerns as well as to present possible solutions, the Centre plans to organize various events such as workshops, speaker series, panel discussions and Annual leadership summit. The Centre will also be offering training, research, and consulting services to leaders at various levels in Indian and multinational organisations.
IIMA has been a research-focused organisation with individual members and research centres contributing to its research progress. As a leading management institution, IIMA has close connections with industry and policy makers in India and abroad. These connections arise out of consulting and customized training that faculty do with organizations; they flow from the placements with firms around the world, from the participation of alumni in institute activities, from the sponsorship of industry in research activities and Professorial Chairs in the Institute and others and from the management development programmes that the Institute conducts.