News & Highlights


Driving Digital Strategy Discussion with Professor Sunil Gupta

This January and February Professor Sunil Gupta, Edward W. Carter Professor of Business Administration, toured Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai, presenting his research on the use of digital technology and its impact on consumer behavior and firm strategy. Alumni, business leaders, and entrepreneurs attended events where he discussed his recent book “Driving Digital Strategy, A Guide to Reimaging your Business.” His book provides a framework for companies to reimagine their business. Referring to numerous case studies and his own research, Professor Gupta demonstrated how the rules of business have changed and why it is no longer enough for firms to be better or cheaper to gain competitive advantage. He described how these new rules make it essential for companies to re-examine four fundamental aspects of their business to thrive in the digital era – their strategy, value chain, customer engagement, and organization structure.
  • December 2018

Research Roundtable on Scaling Entrepreneurial Ventures, Challenges, and Frameworks

The HBS India Research Center hosted a research roundtable discussion with Professor Ranjay Gulati, Jaime and Josefina Chua Tiampo Professor of Business Administration, on December 7th, 2018 in Mumbai. The purpose of the discussion was to gain insight into the specific challenges and complexities that entrepreneurs face while scaling up start-up companies. Roundtable participants included professionals, investors, and entrepreneurs operating in various parts of the Indian start-up ecosystem. During the discussion, participants identified numerous challenges, complexities, and pitfalls faced by entrepreneurs as well as important factors for entrepreneurs to keep in mind when scaling their businesses.
  • September 2018
  • Club News

Exploring the Future of Work for Women

The HBS India Research Center, the HBS Club of India and the HBS Gender Initiative hosted their first joint conference devoted to exploring what the future holds for working women. The Future of Work: Accelerating Gender Parity Conference, held on September 21, 2018 in Mumbai, was an invitation-only opportunity for 200 CEOs and senior managers to convene with experts and scholars. Professors Robin J. Ely, Diane Doerge Wilson Professor of Business Administration and Faculty Chair of the HBS Gender Initiative and Joseph B. Fuller Professor of General Management who co-leads the School’s Managing the Future of Work project presented their research. Professor Lakshmi Ramarajan, Anna Spangler Nelson and Thomas C. Nelson Associate Professor of Business Administration, gave a presentation on gender identity.

New Research on the Region

  • 2019
  • Working Paper

Managerial Quality and Productivity Dynamics

By: Achyuta Adhvaryu, Anant Nyshadham and Jorge Tamayo

Which managerial skills, traits, and practices matter most for productivity? How does the observability of these features affect how appropriately they are priced into wages? Combining two years of daily, line-level production data from a large Indian garment firm with rich survey data on line managers, we find that several key dimensions of managerial quality, like attention, autonomy, and control, are important for learning-by-doing as well as for overall productivity but are not commensurately rewarded in pay. Counterfactual simulations of our structural model show large gains from screening potential hires via psychometric measurement and training to improve managerial practices.

  • February 2019
  • Case

India: State Capacity and Unity in Diversity

By: Alberto Cavallo, Matthew Weinzierl and Robert Scherf

As 2018 drew to a close, India prepared to once again carry out the largest democratic exercise in human history, as in less than six months more than 850 million eligible voters would have the chance to choose their representatives to the Lok Sabha—the country’s lower house of parliament—and, thus, their country’s Prime Minister and cabinet.[i] The election would pit the ruling party—the Bharatiya Janata Party (Indian People’s Party, known as the BJP) led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi—against a collection of parties that included the once-dominant Indian National Congress party (Congress). The 2019 elections would serve as a referendum on Modi’s first term in office and, therefore, on a high stakes question: had India’s implausibly robust democracy produced the right leader for the right moment, or had it taken the wrong path?

  • Forthcoming
  • Article
  • Strategic Management Journal

Prior Ties and the Limits of Peer Effects on Startup Team Performance

By: Sharique Hasan and Rembrand Koning

We conduct a field experiment at an entrepreneurship bootcamp to investigate whether interaction with proximate peers shapes a nascent startup team's performance. We find that teams whose members lack prior ties to others at the bootcamp experience peer effects that influence the quality of their product prototypes. A one-standard-deviation increase in the performance of proximate teams is related to a two-thirds standard-deviation improvement for a focal team. In contrast, we find that teams whose members have many prior ties interact less frequently with proximate peers, and thus their performance is unaffected by nearby teams. Our findings highlight how prior social connections, which are often a source of knowledge and influence, can limit new interactions and thus the ability of organizations to leverage peer effects to improve the performance of their members.

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