Business and the SDGs in India: Rethinking Business for 2030

What is the role of business in advancing the 2030 Agenda in India? How, and to what extent, can the private sector play a strategic role in government efforts towards achieving the SDGs? And how have leading companies operationalized their commitments towards the SDGs? 


Mumbai, the commercial capital of India. Photo: Sam Koplewicz.



13.30 - 14.00 Registration and Seating 

14.00 - 14.05 Welcome - Ann Ollestad, Consul General of Norway in Mumbai

14.05 - 15.25 Plenary Session I: Business Practices for a Sustainable Planetary Future 
Moderator: Prof. Dan Banik, Director of the Oslo SDG Initiative, Centre for                               Development and the Environment, University of Oslo 

  • Kristine Anvik Leach, Managing Director, Jotun 
  • Anirban Ghosh, Head of Sustainability, Mahindra & Mahindra 
  • Raj Gupta, CEO, Lowe Lintas
  • Ajay Menon, General Manager India, Gelato
  • Sudhir Shenoy, CEO, Dow Chemicals
  • Namita Vikas, Group President & Global Head, Climate Strategy & Responsible Banking, Yes Bank 

15.25 - 15.40 Break 

15.40 - 16.50 Plenary Session II: How can Businesses Implement the Idea of Inclusion:                       Leave No One Behind
Moderator: Jashodhara Dasgupta, Executive Director, National Foundation for                         India 

  • Ashish Kumar Singh, Principal Secretary, Transport & Ports, Govt. of Maharashtra
  • Rajni Bakshi, Journalist & Writer
  • Dr. Anand Bang, Advisor to the CM of Maharashtra
  • Bittu Sahgal, Editor, Sanctuary Asia Magazine
  • Nandita Shah, Akshara Mumbai 

 16.50 - 17.20 Open Forum
                       Moderator: Priya Naik, Founder & CEO, Samhita

  • How you can give to the ecosystem? 
  • What you expect to get from the ecosystem? 

 17.20 - 17.40 Valedictory Session: Brief remarks on the way forward 
                       Chair: Consulate General of Norway 

  • Samhita 
  • NFI 
  • UiO 

17.40              Proceed for dinner hosted by the Royal Norwegian Consulate General,                            Mumbai 


Business and the SDGs in India - a lever for sustainable development

Governments are at the heart of ensuring progress towards the SDGs, and PM Narendra Modi and the Indian government have placed the SDGs high on the political agenda. At the same time, it is widely recognized that the Goals will not be met without the involvement of the private sector, and the innovation, job creation and tax revenue generation it brings with it.

Many argue that the “business case” for sustainable development is particularly persuasive. Several recent reports have linked the SDGs with innovation and investment opportunities, highlighting how the SDGs provide a very innovative roadmap for sustainable business. However, a recent global survey by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development has concluded that although 79 % of their member companies mentioned the SDGs in their report, only 6 % documented strategies and goals explicitly linked to the goals. Thus, many actors caution against “greenwashing” and thereby question the genuine commitment of businesses towards the SDGs.

With 1/6 of the world’s population, India’s success in ensuring sustainable development will be crucial for achieving the SDGs globally. The Indian private sector will be an important lever in determining India’s contribution, and is expected to play a critical role through their core business as well in partnerships with the government and civil society.

This event seeks to explore the role of business in advancing the 2030 Agenda in India. How, and to what extent, can the private sector play a strategic role in government efforts towards achieving the SDGs? Who are the leading actors on sustainable development in the private sector in India, and how have they operationalized their commitments towards the SDGs? Furthermore, what is the role of public-private partnerships in promoting sustainable Development?

Published Mar. 8, 2019 12:09 PM - Last modified May 8, 2019 8:18 AM