The 5th International Conference on Business Dynamics and Sustainable Development, held at St Joseph’s University, Bangalore – KONKANCATHOLIC.COM

The 5th International Conference on Business Dynamics and Sustainable Development, held at St Joseph’s University, Bangalore

March 22, 2024

Bangalore: The 5th international conference on Business Dynamics and Sustainable Development (ICBD 5.0), a flagship event of the School of Business at St Joseph’s University, Bengaluru, was held on March 14–15, 2024. The conference was sponsored by Miles Education, Titan, LTImindtree, and Vertex Ventures.

A total of 60 research paper presenters from various institutions—a mix of academicians, research scholars, industry professionals, and students of higher education across the world—participated in the conference.

The theme of the conference revolves around the genesis and growth of various sustainable practices within and outside the boundaries of India. Also, the dynamics of the environment, society, and governance in sustainability have changed with the announcement of India’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2070. Every stakeholder has a bigger role in pivoting business development through sustainable leadership. This conference has been conceptualized to enable the confluence of research ideas and innovations in sustainable practices.

Conference Inauguration:

The inaugural ceremony began with a welcome address by Conference Chairman Dr. Christo Selvan V, Dean, School of Business, reminiscing about the conference’s inception in January 2023 and acknowledging the relentless efforts of over 60 individuals who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make the event a success.

Chief Guest, Mr Tirunelveli Parasuraman, highlighted the surge in digital transformation catalyzed by the COVID-19 pandemic. He emphasized India’s rapid ascent as a manufacturing hub, projecting GDP growth to 10 trillion by 2030. Despite technological advancements, he pointed out the persistent challenge of limited land resources and echoed the words of Former President APJ Abdul Kalam, stressing the importance of internal change.

The Guest of Honor, Mr. Ewout De Wit, expressed his commitment to fostering collaboration between nations to tackle future challenges. He commended St. Joseph’s University for hosting ICBD 5.0 and applauded its dedication to sustainability. He shared insights from Philips, where 5000 individuals are dedicated to advancing healthcare, emphasizing the importance of collective action for a better future.

Dr. Regina Mathias, Pro Vice Chancellor at St. Joseph’s University, delivered the presidential address, acknowledging the significance of sustainability in driving societal evolution, even from a technology and electronics background.

Key note Speaker Ms. Maureen Mboshane, Retd. VP of Corporate Affairs, Sasol Synfuels of South Africa, emphasized the imperative of transparency, accountability, and stakeholder engagement for a sustainable future. She underscored the critical role of stakeholders in addressing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and outlined the strategic intent of the 2030 agenda.

Technical Session

The Technical Session was handled by Mr. T. R. Dayalan, Country Head of ARK Power Solutions Pvt. Ltd., Bangalore. With a captivating presentation, he delved into the evolution of business dynamics, drawing parallels with the transformation of the music industry from CDs to online platforms like Spotify. He emphasized how digital acceleration has revolutionized businesses, highlighting the imperative of adapting to thrive in today’s competitive landscape. Mr. Dayalan shed light on the current business dynamics, emphasizing the convergence of digital acceleration, inflation, and sustainability and stressing the significance of gaining a deeper understanding to gain a competitive edge. Exploring sustainable development, he underscored its importance for long-term viability. Furthermore, Mr. Dayalan elucidated on factors disrupting sustainability, urging proactive recognition and addressing of challenges. His address culminated with a compelling video by TAT Power, underscoring the importance of sustainable development. In recognition, Mr. T. R. Dayalan was felicitated by Ms. Princy Nisha. The session provided valuable insights into navigating business dynamics and embracing sustainability for success.

Technical Session II was handled by Mr. Pranjal Goswami, Chief Sustainability Officer at Gokuldas Exports. With a rich background in spearheading sustainability initiatives across various sectors, Mr. Goswami delved into the intriguing topic of the “Future of Sustainable Business.” During his engaging presentation, Mr. Goswami elucidated two pivotal elements of sustainable business: defining what constitutes sustainable business practices and understanding how businesses can contribute to a sustainable future. He highlighted the ongoing transition in energy sources and emphasized the critical role of sustainable development in achieving net-zero goals, aligning with national pledges. Furthermore, Mr. Goswami underscored the significance of consumers in driving sustainable practices, citing examples such as the gaming industry, where consumer choices significantly impact the industry’s trajectory. He emphasized the importance of assessing whether products generate positive societal impacts as a vital aspect of sustainable development. Addressing queries from the audience, Mr. Goswami engaged in a questionnaire session wherein students posed thought-provoking questions. One such query centered on the financial implications of investing in sustainable products, prompting insightful discussions on managing expenses while pursuing sustainability goals.

Panel Discussion: Emerging Trends and Opportunities in the ESG Era

The Panel Discussion on “Emerging Trends and Opportunities in the ESG Era” was moderated by Mr. Rajnarayanan Ramakrishnan, President, XLRI Bengaluru Alumni Chapter.

Mr. Ben Matias, Managing Partner at Vertex Venture SEA and India, shed light on the investor’s perspective when considering startups for investment. He emphasized the significance of ESG compliance as a critical criterion, categorizing companies into A, B, and C categories based on their adherence to ESG standards. He elucidated that while A-category companies pose higher risks due to non-compliance, C-category companies demonstrate exemplary ESG practices.

Ms. Mashudu Ndou, Vice President ESG at Sasol of South Africa, aimed to demystify the true essence of ESG, unraveling its multifaceted implications in business practices.

Mr. Paneesh Rao, Chief Sustainability Officer, LTI Mindtree, highlighted the evolution of corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices, emphasizing their importance in addressing societal challenges. He shared insights into the water crisis in Bangalore and stressed the significance of sustainable practices. Mr. Rao emphasized that although implementing ESG measures might be costly initially, they hold the key to long-term benefits for society and the environment. He discussed the implementation of sustainable policies in workplaces, such as banning single-use plastics and promoting eco-friendly practices.

Mr. Sridhar, Head of ESG, Bengaluru International Airport: Mr. Sridhar elaborated on the strategic pillars of a sustainable future, underscoring the importance of holistic approaches to address environmental, social, and governance issues.

The conference shed insights from the business and academic worlds, emphasizing its role in fostering a sustainable future. Despite diverse backgrounds, all speakers and panelists shared a common goal: to contribute positively to our planet’s well-being through the dynamics of business. This conference highlighted its unique approaches aimed at promoting sustainable business in simple, understandable terms.

Conference conveners Ms. Amita Priyadarshini and Ms. Immaculate Mary highlighted the pressing issue of Bangalore’s water crisis due to climate change, urging collective action towards sustainability. The International Conference on Business Dynamics and Sustainable Development (ICBD 5.0) served as a platform for meaningful discourse and collaboration, inspiring attendees to work towards a more sustainable and prosperous future.