Design Thinking for Innovation at SBAC 2019 | SPJIMR

Design Thinking for Innovation at SBAC 2019

Design Thinking for Innovation at SBAC 2019

Academic Keynote Speaker

Dr. Srikant M. Datar
Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor of Business Administration, Senior Associate Dean for University Affairs, Harvard Business School

Dr.Srikant M. Datar is the Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor of Business Administration, Faculty Chair of the Harvard Innovation Lab, HBS One Harvard Faculty Fellow, and Senior Associate Dean for University Affairs at Harvard Business School.

A graduate with distinction from the University of Mumbai, he is also a gold medallist from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, and the Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India. A Chartered Accountant, he holds two masters degrees and a Ph.D. from Stanford University.

A dedicated and innovative teacher, Dr. Datar received the George Leland Bach Award for Excellence in the Classroom at Carnegie Mellon University and the Distinguished Teaching Award at Stanford University. He teaches MBA and Executive Education classes in design thinking, innovation, big data, and strategy implementation. He has co-authored a leading cost accounting textbook, ‘Cost Accounting: A Managerial Emphasis’ and ‘Rethinking the MBA: Business Education at a Crossroads ‘.

Dr. Datar has several course development and research interests including management education, design thinking and innovation, problem-solving, machine learning and artificial intelligence. His research work has been published in several prestigious journals.

He serves on the Board of Directors of ICF International, Novartis AG, Stryker Corporation, and T-Mobile US, and has worked with many corporations on consulting and field-based projects. He is a member of the American Accounting Association and the Institute of Management Accountants.

Corporate Keynote Speaker

Mr. Piyush Pandey
Chief Creative Officer Worldwide and Executive Chairman India, Ogilvy

Piyush Pandey is the Chief Creative Officer Worldwide and Executive Chairman India, Ogilvy and Padma Shri awardee in 2016. Under his leadership, Ogilvy India has been ranked the No.1 Agency for 12 consecutive years in the Agency Reckoner, an independent Marketing & Advertising Survey conducted by The Economic Times and Brand Equity.

Post his foray into the creative world, he has bagged a number of awards such as being named the “Most Influential Man” in Indian advertising for eight consecutive years by The Economic Times. He was voted Asia's Creative Person of the Year at the Media Asia Awards 2002. He is also the only Indian to win a double gold at Cannes (for his Cancer Patients Association anti-smoking campaign) and a triple grand prize at the London International Awards.

He is known for his memorable campaigns for brands such as Fevicol, Cadbury and Asian Paints among several others. He has also made appearances in films such as Madras Café. Mr. Pandey has studied at St. Xavier’s School, Jaipur and has an MA from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi.


Mr. R. Gopalakrishnan
Author and Corporate Advisor

Mr. R. Gopalakrishnan, has served in several Blue Chip Companies, such as Unilever and Tata in key positions across his career spanning over five decades. Apart from serving as a Director on the TATA parent board, Tata Sons, he also worked with several group companies and is an independent director of Castrol India and Hemas Holdings PLC, Sri Lanka. He was the president of the All India Management Association.

Mr. Gopalakrishnan is an international speaker and is actively engaged in both instructional and inspirational speaking and has addressed several conferences, both international and India over the past years. He has been a newspaper columnist and continues to write for financial papers. He has also authored eight books since 2007. Mr. Gopalakrishnan holds an engineering degree from IIT Kharagpur and has attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Mr. Bharat Puri
MD & Executive Director, Pidilite Industries Limited

Mr. Bharat Puri has helmed numerous successes during his tenure at leading Indian and Global companies. He started his career with Asian Paints in 1982 and rose to the position of General Manager – Sales & Marketing. He has subsequently held key portfolios in Cadbury where he was in charge of Strategy, Marketing and Sales.

From then onward, a series of senior leadership positions at the country, region and global level shaped his career. Mr. Bharat Puri has completed his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.


Mr. Vivek Sunder
COO, Swiggy

Mr Vivek Sunder has been leading Swiggy’s business operations since July 2018. He spearheaded the effort to scale the company across cities, while still continuing to operate as a nimble startup. Prior to that, he has been associated with Procter and Gamble for about 20 years in various roles. Mr. Sunder is passionate about building organisational capabilities and has worked with diverse teams spanning more than twenty nationalities in varied roles. He has been an early adapter and innovator of big data/ analytics across many sales & marketing roles.

He is a graduate of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Kolkata, where he specialised in marketing, finance and economics, and prior to that studied Computer Engineering from Delhi University. He is a guest lecturer at his alma mater IIM-C, as well at other premier B-schools across the world where he teaches and shares business expertise.

Ms. Sonali Dhawan
CMO, P&G Indian subcontinent and Business Unit Head - Fabric

Ms. Sonali Dhawan, CMO P&G, India Subcontinent, has over twenty years of experience in Business Leadership and Brand Management. She currently heads the Fabric Care business for P&G across India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. She is appointed to the Board of Directors for Gillette India Ltd and PGHH India Ltd as the Non-Executive Director.

Ms. Dhawan was associated with the development of multiple socially relevant award-winning campaigns, including Cannes award winners: Ariel #SharetheLoad; Whisper #TouchthePickle and Vicks #TouchofCare. She was awarded the ‘Top Woman Achievers of 2017’ by AsiaOne magazine and ‘CMO of the year’ by exchange4media in the category of Home products in 2015. She is sixth on the list of IMPACT’s ‘50 Most Influential Women’ in Marketing and Media for the last two years. She also leads the CSR programme for P&G India-‘Shiksha’, which has won multiple awards – including the ‘Best CSR Program’ award by Lokmat in 2017-18.

Ms. Dhawan is an alumnus of renowned institutes like Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University and IIM, Ahmedabad. 


Dr. Ranjan Banerjee

Dr. Ranjan Banerjee brings with him a rare combination of extensive business, corporate training, academic and consulting experience and insight. Dr. Banerjee holds a BTech from IIT Mumbai, an MBA from IIM Kolkata and a PhD in Management from the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, USA. His research has been presented at the University of Michigan, Harvard Business School, London Business School, University of Texas at Dallas, Indiana University etc. His doctoral thesis won a global award for the best dissertation in B2B marketing from the Institute for the Study of Business Markets, Penn State University, USA. Dr. Banerjee has worked for leading FMCG companies like Asian Paints, Vadilal and Hindustan Unilever. Dr. Banerjee has also consulted for top Indian and multinational companies like BASF, Legrand, Vodafone, AXA, Philips, Madura Garments, etc. He was the Group COO of Insta Worldwide.

Prior to joining SPJIMR, Dr. Banerjee has also taught at prestigious B-schools like the Carlson School, University of Minnesota, SMU Singapore, IIM Kolkata and Great Lakes. He has published articles in Harvard Business Review online. He has led the workshop for international deans at the GMAC conference in Miami, USA and was a speaker at the GBSN conference in Manila, and the EFMD conference in Phuket. Dr Banerjee was one of the two panelists at a Korn Ferry thought leadership series in

Dr. Suranjan Das
Professor, Quantitative Methods & Design Thinking, SPJIMR

Dr. Suranjan Das’s areas of interest cover statistics, operations research, marketing analytics and design thinking & innovation. He has taught for over 24 years in regular MBA programmes in some of the premier Business Schools in India - IIML, IIMC, IIMI, IIMN as a guest faculty. He has taught across MBA programmes in Belgium, Canada, Dubai, Netherlands, Singapore and Sydney. He also conducted several Management Development Programmes for corporate and social sectors.

Dr. Das has participated and presented papers in seminars and conferences in India and abroad. He has taken part in faculty exchange programmes in Belgium and Netherlands and has worked in EU and World Bank projects on technology and knowledge management. He has been a PhD guide and evaluator with BITS Pilani and IIT Bombay and mentored several PhD students. He was on the National  Jury to select the best Design Thinking projects under the Design For Change programme for high schools.


Mr. Srinivas Venkatram
Founder-CEO and Lead Researcher of Illumine
Knowledge Resources

Srinivas Venkatraman is the Founder-CEO and Lead Researcher of Illumine Knowledge Resources. Prior to Illumine he co-founded and co-led INFAC – a company that pioneered the production of industry reports. Srinivas is an alumnus of IIT Bombay and IIM Ahmedabad.

He began his career in 1989 as a knowledge entrepreneur and went on to set up Illumine in the form of a design and action research lab. Mr Venkatraman experimented with how knowledge can be used as a catalyst for creating sustainable growth/evolution in human systems. Since 2017, he has also been engaged in reflecting on his extensive learnings by organising and systematising his work in to  a form that is more widely accessible.



SBAC 2019 Schedule

5:30pm - 6:15pmExperience @DesignThinking Kiosk, refreshments and registrations
6:15pm - 6:20pmIntroduction by Prof. Vineeta Dwivedi
6:20pm - 6:35pm
Topic: What is Design Thinking
Opening address by Dr. Ranjan Banerjee
6:35pm - 7:00pm
Topic: India Inc and Design Thinking
Research presentation by Dr. Ranjan Banerjee and Dr. Suranjan Das
7:00pm - 7:20pmTopic : Design Thinking and Innovations Mindset
Academic keynote address by Dr. Srikant M Datar
7:20pm - 8:00pm
Topic: Innovations in India: The Role of Design Thinking in Practice
Panel discussion facilitated by:  Mr. R Gopalakrishnan
Panel members: Dr. Srikant M Datar, Mr. Bharat Puri, Ms. Sonali Dhawan and
Mr. Vivek Sunder
8:00pm - 8:20pm
Topic: Design in Communication
Corporate keynote address by Mr. Piyush Pandey
8:20pm - 8:40pm
Topic: Large Scale Cognitive Shifts: How Design Thinking Helps
From Beyond Business by Mr. Srinivas Venkatram
8:40pm - 8:45pmVote of thanks 
8:45pm onwardsDinner


Key Insights on SBAC 2019


About SBAC

The SP Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR) Business-Academia Conclave brings together corporate and academic leaders to drive new and implementable best practices in the business world. SBAC involves leading academics and corporate leaders as speakers, with a host of CXO level attendees, to have a conversation that can bridge the gap between academia and business.

The conference revolves around an issue related to scalable innovation out of India. In 2018, the theme was around large companies and start-ups partnering to drive innovation. We take the innovation agenda forward, initiated in SBAC 2017 and 2018, with a granular look at the approach using Design Thinking (DT).

This year's theme is ‘Design thinking for Innovation’ - a fast growing approach to problem-solving under ambiguity that is rapidly being adopted in India. Corporate leaders and academic leaders will come together to understand and assimilate current best practice in this area and identify exciting new directions for India Inc.

Past speakers and guests at SBAC have included Suresh Narayanan of Nestle, Sanjeev Mehta of Unilever, N Chandra of Tata Sons, D Shivakumar of Pepsico, Kishore Biyani and other corporate luminaries.

At SBAC 2019, one of the world’s foremost experts in Design Thinking Prof Srikant Datar of Harvard Business School is the keynote speaker. Other speakers include Mr Bharat Puri, MD of Pidilite, Mr R Gopalakrishnan ex Director of Tata Sons Ltd etc. The event will be attended by other senior leaders from the business and industry, entrepreneurs, thought-leaders, academicians, researchers and students.  

SPJIMR will present a short research study outlining the current state of design thinking in India and suggesting future directions.  Corporate leaders from cutting edge corporations will share their insights and journeys with design thinking. Some of the questions the conclave will seek to answer include:

a) What is design thinking and why is it becoming popular?

b) Where should it applied? 

c) Does the Western concept of design thinking need to be adapted to India? In what way?

d) Aside from new product innovation, what are other emerging areas of application?

e) Where have we seen failures? Why?

f) How should a company begin its DT journey?

Design Thinking

Big corporations to small start-ups are all using Design Thinking to enhance business growth and to bring innovation and change. It has found widespread acceptance in technology, consumer products and services required by both businesses and the society.  

Design Thinking is a creative, ‘human centered’ problem solving technique which can be used to solve most of the ill-structured real world problems. These are the problems where, many a times, the objectives and stakeholder perceptions are either poorly expressed or remain un-articulated. DT follows an immersive and empathic process of engaging with the intended user to gather deep insights around their expressed and latent needs.

SPJIMR’s annual flagship academia-industry event SBAC is focusing this year on Design Thinking and how this innovative problem solving process is finding wider use in India’s corporate world.

SPJIMR and Design Thinking

A Gartner study in 2017 recognizes SPJIMR as one of the top seven institutes globally that has introduced Design Thinking effectively as part of the curriculum. True to the tenets of Design Thinking an eclectic group of professors drawn from different disciplines and backgrounds have come-together to make a formidable design thinking team at SPJIMR.

Over the past four years SPJIMR has trained over 2400 students and 800 professionals in Design Thinking.

Design Thinking provides a definite edge to our management participants. It adds a layer of special skills which help managers drive innovation and change by equipping them to:

  • Appreciate the value of patience and user insight, by backing off a bit from their own ideas. And by doing so, getting the right insights about the user.
  • Learn how to move away from the fear of making errors. It helps build the mindset of making mistakes and learning from failures.
  • Overcome bias originating from their prior experiences in thinking, planning, acting on a task, evaluating and so on. DT helps overcome such bias especially when it comes to ideating and executing on a task.

Articles on DT

Why CEOs must delve into Design Thinking

Design thinking as a tool for HR Transformation



Taj Santacruz
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (BOM), Western Express Highway, Navpada, Vile Parle East, Santacruz East, Mumbai, Maharashtra
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SPJIMR Dean, Dr. Ranjan Banerjee, sets the context with his welcome address on What is Design Thinking.

Research presentation by Dr. Ranjan Banerjee and Dr. Suranjan Das on India Inc and Design Thinking at SPJIMR Business Academia Conclave (SBAC) 2019.

Dr. Srikant M Datar speaks on Design Thinking and Innovations Mindset.

Panel members: Mr. R. Gopalakrishnan, Author and Corporate Advisor (Facilitator); Mr. Bharat Puri, MD & Executive Director, Pidilite; Mr. Vivek Sunder, COO, Swiggy; Ms. Sonali Dhawan CMO, P&G; Dr. Srikant M. Datar, Harvard Business School

Mr. Piyush Pandey, Ogilvy speaks on Design in Communication at SPJIMR Business Academia Conclave (SBAC) 2019

Mr Srinivasan Venkatram talks on Large Scale Cognitive Shifts: How Design Thinking at SBAC2019


Glimpses of SBAC 2019

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