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Kalpvriksha-furthering concept of CSR

india Updated: Oct 24, 2006 00:07 IST

‘KALPVRIKSHA- Bright ideas for a better world’, a first of its kind social venture challenge initiated by Indian Institute of Management, Indore (IIM-I) as a social venture challenge game forming a part of the annual management fest- SBI Iris-06, is furthering the concept of ‘Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)’.

Participation to the game played in three phases has already begun with a record number of entries being received for the same. Apart from its unique idea it has support of renowned non-government organisation ‘Ashoka- Innovators for the public’ and Infosys.

The objective of ‘Kalpvriksha’ is to draw out ideas in novel entrepreneurship, involving the application of business ideas, concepts and theories in a way that will benefit society as a whole. The game emphasises upon the future mangers that only taking in the form of large earnings is not the ultimate objective for success or satisfaction and one has to give back to society.

The participants are expected to send original and practically implementable ideas.  The winner would get a cash prize of Rs 50,000 which is a huge incentive. This shows that IIM Indore takes this event seriously enough to provide all encouragement for participation in ‘Kalpavriksha’.

It is a first of its kind event across all B-Schools and the partners; Infosys and Ashoka are all reputed in their fields. Given their credibility, regarding their social consciousness they would take the plans forward. Infosys came on board as sponsoring partners, and Ashoka, the reputed NGO organization is the Knowledge Partner.

The idea germinated amongst IIM- I students as the best way to encourage other management institutes to come forth in a one-of-a-kind initiative, which aims to combine management learning and social consciousness. No better time could be found to hold it than IRIS 2006, the annual management festival being held November 9 to November 12.

The Event is a social initiative contest with a difference. The objective is to provide a platform to individuals with
radical ideas – ideas that would benefit the social sector. The aim is to extend the scope of IRIS as a B-school fest and reach out into the society at large. For the first time ever in any B-school event, participants will work towards developing innovative plans that will benefit society.

The preliminary phase began on September 25 asked for participation across 25 of the top B-Schools of the country. All those who were interested were asked to send in an Executive Summary describing their ideas the participant wishes to work on, along with brief details of how it will be executed.

It also contained a short justification for the participant selecting the particular issue. The last date for submission was October 8. Of the record 80 entries received five were selected with the help of Ashoka Fellows in their respective cities. The participating teams would be provided with a token sum of Rs 1,500 to aid them in conducting their field visits and their research.

The third and the final phase would involve the teams being invited to the IIM Indore Campus to make the Final Presentation of their ideas in front of an eminent panel of judges during IRIS 2006. That is where that grand winning idea would be decided upon.

The team adjudged to have the best idea would stand to win Rs 50,000 as the first prize. The response has been tremendous-more than 80 different ideas as entries for the first phase of the game from which five have been short-listed. This shows just how interested the management students are in addressing social problems. Entries received covered almost all sectors like rural health problems, water scarcity, electricity shortages, educational paucities and the chronic unemployment menace.