IFMR GSB’s student-led marketing committee launches ‘Prayatna’

IFMR GSB’s student-led marketing committee launches ‘Prayatna’

Markaholic, IFMR GSB’s student-led marketing committee, along with the Graduate School of Business’ notable alumni, recently launched an informative marketing workshop series titled ‘Prayatna’. The committee’s first workshop featured Amandeep Singh Kochar – Business Director at VMLY&R, New Delhi and an alumnus of IFMR GSB. Having worked with well-known brands such as TCS, Fresh Marketing Idea,, KRDS, and Brandmovers, Amandeep shared his own experience and ideas on marketing, business development, creative strategies, and more in his session – ‘Succeeding in the World of Direct to Consumer (DTC)’.

Moving forward, the committee plans to host a marketing workshop every fortnight for a couple of hours, in a bid to inform students about all the trending marketing job roles in the industry, spread awareness about all the necessary skills required to excel in the field, engage in discussion through various practical demonstrations and activities, and, ultimately, build a strong student alumni network.

Inaugural Krea Professional Development Programme registers over 400 participants


In an effort to help develop and evolve professional expertise and skills of educators fit for the 21st century, eminent subject experts at Krea are hosting a series of interactive workshops. 

The first in the series was a workshop on ‘Online Education in Trying Times: Ideas and Strategies’ by Dr Akhila Ramnarayan, Divisional Chair, Literature & the Arts.

Attended by more than 400 education industry professionals from across the country, this 2 hour workshop discussed ideas, strategies, and best practices for online instruction, engagement, and learning, imagining together how educators can work to fulfill the mission of school and college education in today’s world. Through the discussions, Dr Akhila explored how the Coronavirus pandemic might have reshaped education, and how educational institutions can rise to the challenge.

All participants actively discussed queries around interactive learning, management of practical classes in the virtual realm, innovative assessment methods and counselling interventions.

Dr Akhila demonstrated activities which educators could use in their respective virtual classes for enhanced engagement. She shared deep insights on strategies which could nurture emotional wellbeing of students. She also touched on the fact that to take good care of students, teachers needed to foremost take good care of their own selves.  

The educators were highly engaged throughout the workshop and the Q & A session focused on conversations seeking empathetic modes of knowledge delivery through the online medium. As the curtains went down, the participating educators affirmed feeling equipped to use these new strategies and ideas in their upcoming classes. 

‘Krea Professional Development Programme’ is a certification workshop which invites  professionals to interact, engage and expand their skills, through workshops hosted by the fine academic minds at Krea.

About Akhila Ramnarayan

Dr Akhila Ramnarayan is Divisional Chair, Literature & the Arts, Associate Professor of Practice, and Curator, VENI, The Ideas Place, at Krea University.  She is a writer, scholar, theatre actor, and trained Carnatic vocalist with a PhD in postcolonial studies from The Ohio State University (2006).  She has worked at Pramati Technologies, Chennai (2013-2018), the Asian College of Journalism, Chennai (2011-2014), and University of Dayton, Ohio (2006-2011).

A key member of Chennai’s globally touring theatre company JustUs Repertory and founder member of performing arts institute Sahrdaya Foundation, she has received national recognition for theatre (acting) as the 2013-2014 awardee of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar.

Yoga and Mindfulness Learning Program

Yoga and Mindfulness

SIAS students have an opportunity to be a part of a Yoga and Mindfulness Learning Program,  by Carolyn Theresa Simon, an E-RYT 500 certified yoga instructor and wellness expert. The four session learning program will help students expand their understanding of mindfulness and practice yoga for anxiety and stress management, and deep focus.

Carolyn Theresa Simon is a Bangalore based wellness and food writer, fitness model and E-RYT 500 certified yoga instructor who enjoys finding stillness in movement. Initially drawn to yoga for its physical benefits, what made her fall in love with yoga were the immense mental and spiritual benefits derived from regular practice. She enjoys teaching all levels of students in different styles. Mindfulness, Ayurveda, Food and Yoga are topics she’s extremely passionate about and is working towards changing the world through yoga.

IFMR establishes Atal Incubation Centre ‘Catalyst’ in Jaipur

IFMR establishes Atal Incubation Centre ‘Catalyst’ in Jaipur

IFMR Society has set up an Atal Incubation Centre (AIC), Catalyst, under the aegis of the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), which is a flagship initiative of NITI Aayog. Established as a Section 8 entity, Catalyst AIC seeks to accelerate innovative, disruptive and inclusive tech solutions for the last mile. Over a five-year period, the program will work towards building a robust support system for entrepreneurs working to enhance livelihood opportunities for underserved segments in rural India, with a focus on rural artisans.

Home to a 200 million-plus strong artisan community, India’s handicrafts and handloom sector is deeply linked with its cultural heritage and is a crucial pillar to provide sustainable livelihood opportunities in rural areas. With the exception of a few supply chains, the sector is largely unorganised, and artisans have poor access to formal capital, weak exposure to new technologies, and markets. Inclusive tech applications, combined with relevant livelihood initiatives, can bring artisans into the fold of the formal economy, nurture greater inclusion and growth in rural areas.

The Catalyst AIC focuses on solutions that seek to strengthen access to digital financial services, improve supply chain management, skill development and workforce management, among others. It is unique in its value proposition as it provides startups with real-world test environments to rapidly test, iterate and deploy their solutions and integrate data-driven insights on their consumer segments to improve product design and delivery.

Located in Jaipur, the Catalyst AIC offers a dedicated incubation space of approx. 10,000 sq. ft. to incubatees. As part of the incubation program, selected incubatees will receive support in identifying target customer segments, piloting solutions, access to domain experts and fine-tuning business models, drawing on IFMR’s thought leadership and research centre LEAD at Krea University’s deep expertise in field-based research. Drawing on a broad spectrum of partners from the IFMR-Krea ecosystem, the Catalyst AIC incubation program will also facilitate relevant partnerships with educational and research institutes, corporates, startup ecosystem players, and investors.

Dr Sunder Ramaswamy, Vice Chancellor of Krea University shared, “The Catalyst AIC reflects our ethos to nurture an inclusive ecosystem built on exchange of knowledge, ideas, insights and meaningful collaborations. It also strengthens our vision to interweave high quality research with impactful solutions on the ground”.

“While urban India has seen rapid digitisation of processes and systems across all domains through startups, India’s last mile communities have been left largely unserved. With Catalyst AIC, we aim to provide a holistic support ecosystem for inclusive tech startups, building solutions for the last mile. We believe that with the right support systems in place, India has the capability and capacity to produce the next high performance business model, exclusively serving these vastly untapped, underserved communities.”, said Deepanshu Khandelwal, CEO of Catalyst AIC. He has previously worked with EY in the form of a consultant to state governments on their startup policies. He has worked with startups extensively over the past seven years. Deepanshu is also the founder of digital news media company, Blue Box Media.

“A key component of the Catalyst AIC Incubator is to provide in-depth granular research that helps start-ups. LEAD has extensive experience in understanding how to best cater to the last mile. This knowledge and expertise will be instrumental in providing ground-level insights on the artisan segment. It will enable the creation of tailor-made products for the last-mile, and importantly, those that are women-centric – taking into account their requirements, challenges and what works equally for men and women.” said Sharon Buteau, Executive Director of LEAD at Krea University. Over the past decade, Sharon has been working on understanding how co-creation, collaborative processes, as well using the power of technology and data from the ground up can improve socio-economic outcomes for individuals, households and enterprises. She focuses on bringing the right combination of talent, expertise and stakeholders together to ensure that investments and efforts are perfectly aligned with the desired goals.

The first phase of the Catalyst initiative was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), under the mSTAR Program to increase adoption of digital payments in India. Under a partnership with the Government of Rajasthan, LEAD set up a first of its kind digital payments lab in Jaipur to enable small merchants and low-income consumers move towards a less cash economy.

The Incubator will be formally launched shortly. This will be followed by a call for applications for the first cohort of startups.

Supporting Women-led Rural Microenterprises through COVID and Beyond

LEAD Women Microenterprises

LEAD hosted the third chapter of a webinar series on supporting women-led rural microenterprises amid COVID-19 and beyond. A collaboration with the World Bank and the Ministry of Rural Development, it featured senior policymakers and experts with a discussion on short-term and long-term policy interventions and strategies to enable graduation of women-led enterprises. The panellists and speakers highlighted the need for entrepreneurship development programs that focus on strengthening capabilities, providing handholding support to women entrepreneurs, strengthening access to institutional finance by building credit histories, and improving market linkages for women-led enterprises.

Krea hosts dialogue sans borders- conversations with the world

dialogue sans borders_NL

Krea University hosted a series of compelling conversations between eminent subject experts from world-renowned universities and research organizations across the globe, and the academic minds at Krea — on the post-crisis future of our nations, health, families, societies, environment and the interconnected world we live in. These curated diverse global narratives redefine the world of tomorrow. With more than 20 eminent speakers from 7 nations across the globe, dialogue sans borders was a four session global event.  

In the inaugural session on ‘Future of Public Health, panelists from University of Oxford, The George Institute for Global Health and Krea University imparted learnings and shared perspectives on research, trends and policies while also shedding light on critical interventions needed for public health in a world with and beyond COVID-19.

The session on ‘Future of Social Behaviour’ witnessed academic practitioners from Australia Council for the Arts , Nottingham Trent University, University of Witwatersrand, Krea University and IWWAGE unfolded the changing face of social behaviour, our attitudes towards each other and societies, mental health and new coping mechanisms and the gender-based challenges that lie ahead.

In the upcoming session on ‘Future of Sustainability’, panelists from University College Cork, Energy Policy Institute at University of Chicago (EPIC), M.S. Chadha Center for Global India, Princeton University and Krea University, brought together the emerging narrative of environment sustainability in a world that’s evolving with COVID-19. 

The final and concluding session on ‘Future of Global Relations’, witnessed panelists from University of Sussex, Victoria University of Wellington and Krea University share insights into the transforming narrative of global relations, the international policies in times of crisis, and its long-term impact on global migration, trade and societies.

The sessions were moderated by Mukund Padmanabhan, the former editor of The Hindu and Visiting Professor of Practice at Krea University.

You can watch the recordings here.

Tackling Gender-based Violence Through the Lens of Space

LEAD_Gender Based Violence_3

LEAD concluded their three-part webinar series on rising gender-based violence amid COVID-19 . The final part explored the role of space – public, private and digital, in gender-based violence, especially in the current context. Highlighting gaps in current research, the young and dynamic panel answered questions from the participants and presented a way forward towards building safe and inclusive spaces for all.

IFMR GSB welcomes the L&T C EMBA cohort of 2020-23 


IFMR GSB at Krea University, welcomed the new cohort of L&T Executives to the EMBA program 2020-23. Dr Sunder Ramaswamy, Vice-Chancellor at Krea University and Dr Shobha Das, Dean of IFMR GSB, personally welcomed the new executives. Other distinguished guests at the inauguration event included Mr. Ramkishore, Vice President & Head – Divisional Corporate HR, L&T Construction and Mr. Karthikeyan TV, Executive Vice President – Finance and Accounts, L&T Construction. 

Dr Sunder Ramaswamy expressed in his welcome address, “L&T Construction is one of the iconic companies in India which has played a major role in building India’s defining infrastructure projects. The company has admirably continued to invest in its employees even during these tough times.” 

He also added, that we live in a world, where information is cheap, instant and universally available, the differentiation between information and knowledge is how to optimally harness information aided by effective coaching and teaching. IFMR GSB faculty  would teach learners ‘how to learn’ and remain relevant in the increasingly dynamically changing world that we inhabit.

In her welcome note, Dr Shobha Das shared the rich history of IFMR GSB, set up in 1970 – the 1st of its kind in the financial research  and education center in Asia. “This partnership brings together two organizations who excel in their respective fields and both organizations place a lot of importance to knowledge and learning.” , stated Dr Das . She lauded L&T Construction as a much-admired company for several reasons, a key reason being its willingness to invest in employee development, even more admirable, in the current crisis amid uncertainties.

In his insightful address to the incoming cohort, Mr. Ramkishore explained the rigorous selection process that handpicks 45 participants who make it to the committed program. He added, “An MBA instills certain key attributes essential for success; quick thinking, analyzing data and converting it into information, turning information into insights and converting insights into focused actions.” He urged participants to make the most of the virtual situation they are in, free themselves from the constraints of time and space that this opportunity affords and make the most of this education that participants are about to receive.

Reinforcing the partnership, he stated that L&T C partners only with institutions of excellence as their academic partners and IFMR GSB at Krea University is one of them. 

Chief Guest of the inauguration event, Mr. Karthikeyan T V, shared words of wisdom and emphasized that it was up to the participants to make the best use of the faculty and the resources made available to them. “At the end of this three year MBA program, my experience and expectation is that participants would have excellent business sense, that only an MBA course imparts- ‘How to run your business’, ‘How to deal with situations that are commercial oriented’ and ‘How do you think professionally, but in a business focused manner’ , ‘How do I make money’. 

The incoming cohort includes L&T C IC Head HRs- Mr. Srikant Srinivasan, PT&D; Mr. Bartanu Kumar Das, HC ; Ms. Poonam Chandok TI; Mr. J Kabilan B&F; Ms. K Meena Priya IEL; Mr. Girish, Smart World & Communication; Mr. Binu L&T GEO and L&T  Divisional Corporate Academic Contact head – Mr. Raghavendran.