In January this year, Essar Foundation; Thinkthrough, a New Delhi-based social development consulting company; and Nathan Associates, a US-headquartered international development consulting firm, organised a workshop on the impact of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) investments on communities and businesses.
The event saw attendees from business houses, international development agencies, the CSR sector, and non-profit organisations. This workshop was the 17th session, held as part of Essar Foundation’s CSR Knowledge series, which is working towards utilising knowledge-sharing to improve CSR initiatives industry wide.
The workshop focused on the need to effectively measure the impact of CSR programmes, what Indian industries can learn from international development, and innovative ways of measuring change. Mr Deepak Arora, CEO, Essar Foundation delivered the welcome address, emphasising the importance of change measurement, which can be a complex process, but is a critical aspect of CSR projects. Mr Paul Moore, Senior Vice President, International Development Economics elaborated upon the work and expertise of Nathan Associates in the area of international development. Thereafter Mr Parul Soni, Global Managing Partner, Thinkthrough Consulting and Mr Howard Miller, Consultant, Nathan Associates made a presentation on measuring impact in CSR.
The assessment of change has to be built in to CSR programme itself. It is important to review the problem regularly and conduct an audit to track the corresponding impact. The framework of measurement should be kept simple.
The event concluded with Ms Susan Chodakewitz, CEO, Nathan Associates giving the closing remarks.