Charles Dhanaraj
Charles Dhanaraj
Indiana University


MB Sarkar
MB Sarkar
Temple University


About the Initiative


This initiative is born out of our dream, one inspired and shaped by C.K. Prahalad, to advance scholarship from within India and on India. India’s emergence as an economic power and as a source of innovation exemplifies a fundamental shift in the global economy’s center of gravity. In this unfolding scenario, the world is increasingly looking towards emerging markets like India to find solutions to socially intractable solutions through innovative business models. It is also a rare and strategic opportunity for the field of strategic management to explore new paradigms and enhance its impact.

With CK as the convener, and with committed colleagues across the world, we took the initial step with the SMS India Conference in December 2008, hosted by the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad. The resounding success of this effort helped us realize that the vision is not only timely, but one that is shared by many of you. A major take away from the conference, though, was the sense that despite the incredible opportunity, progress is constrained by lack of research capacity in emerging markets such as India. As a result, in spite the large number of researchers and their interest in advancing scholarship, the participation of Indian institutions in the global exchange of ideas and therefore India’s role as a knowledge hub, remains underdeveloped. For the field of strategic management research too, India presents a fertile but untapped ground for experimentation and development.

The SMS India Research Initiative hopes to address these opportunities and challenges by playing an active role in building research capacity in India, creating a community of scholars around the world who share this excitement of scholarly opportunities in emerging markets, and promoting collaborative research that advances both scholarship and practice.

More specifically, our immediate goal is to enable the aspirations of some of the brightest minds in Indian academia to find a voice in the international marketplace of ideas by enhancing their research capabilities, and thus the likelihood of publishing their work in reputed international journals. The capability to pursue interesting research questions, design and execute it well, and meet the quality requirements of the top journals is a tough journey but one that has begun. Our dream is that over the decade, the India Research Initiative will build a community of 100 accomplished scholars based in India, who in turn would transform the academic landscape in India.

We start with two faculty development workshops, the first one in December 2010 in collaboration with IIM Bangalore, and the second one in February 2011 in collaboration with IIM Calcutta. These faculty workshops will create a highly interactive and intensive environment for select scholars to interact with accomplished global scholars who serve in editorial responsibilities of leading journals. Our hope is that these will grow into annual events and perhaps even expand.

We are planning a special triennial conference to follow on the success of our 2008 conference at ISB Hyderabad. We are exploring the possibility of a Summer Strategy Institute in India – a six-week long program targeted for top students registered in doctoral programs in India, that will bring internationally renowned scholars to provide short modular programs. This program will build on and complement the course work at their home institutions and will serve to expand the capacity and reach of these doctoral students. The future of business education and scholarship in India depends upon these students and the India Research Initiative will provide the needed impetus to advance this capacity.

We hope to build on these ideas and leverage on the suggestions coming from far and wide.


Charles Dhanaraj
Indiana University

MB Sarkar
Temple University




Strategic Management Society

India Research Initiative

2008 Special Conference

2010 Bangalore Workshop

2011 Calcutta Workshop

2013 SPECIAL CONFERENCE