This is the first time that software body Nasscom is holding its leadership summit under the twin shadows of lower growth estimates and corporate governance issues in the much-respected Indian IT sector.
Almost 1,500 national and international delegates are expected to participate and network during the three-day summit. As they enter the gates, the estimated 1,300 paid delegates will be provided with a 'Delegate Entry Badge' which will contain an embedded radio frequency identification tag (RFID) tag. Xtenna, a solution provided by Essen RFID, will pick up the tag signal and read it, thus identifying the unique identity of the visiting delegate. Speakers and the media will be given the badges only on request.
To begin with, at its executive council meeting tomorrow morning at the Grand Hyatt in Mumbai, the software body will officially reinstate its ethics and governance committee (after almost four years) to look into companies that violate corporate governance norms. "The new charter of the ethics and committee will be announced tomorrow, and with it, we hope to usher in a new era of corporate governance," Nasscom President Som Mittal told Business Standard.
Action to be taken against such companies would be threefold -- awareness, best practices and punitive action, he said, adding the committee can also recommend actions like debarring the company at fault. Commenting on Satyam, Mittal said that Satyam was more of a fraud issue rather than that of corporate governance.
The overall theme of the summit centres around "reshaping the global economy". "Going by various credible estimates, we believe that the global economy would revive in 2010. However, that does not mean that we can ignore long-term issues," says Mittal. While the summit will be addressing short-term issues like enhancing productivity and efficiency, other session will take a look at new strategies being adopted by Asia-Pacific and European regions which hold a lot of potential.
"We will also be looking at long-term strategies for the year 2020," says Mittal. But isn't 2020 too much ahead in the future given today's volatility? True, says Mittal, "but there are also many fundamentals that do not change". For instance, take the healthcare industry, he says. By 2020, more people would have aged and longetivity would have increased. However, there would be fewer resources at hand. "We need to address these issues now, and need more disruptive models towards this end," he reasons.
Getting into newer geographies, putting more thoughts to research and development (R&D) activities, government support for such activities, and security risk assessment (not just delivery and infrastructure but people too) will be other topics that will be discussed as part of the 2020 strategic direction.
Incidentally, world-renowned speakers like Rosabeth Moss Kanter (Ernest L Arbuckle Professor, Harvard Business School), Pankaj Ghemawat (Professor Global Strategy, IESE), Jim Champy (Chairman, Perot Systems) and C K Prahalad (Professor of Strategy, University of Michigan) will address global issues like "Ready for change: Leading for success in a dynamic, complex and sometimes chaotic world", "'Not quite flat out for growth'- A hard new look at the economics of global sourcing", "Challenges Around: How to compete in Tough Times" and "Face Forward – Stepping ahead on lighter feet".
And last, but not the least, Nasscom will be addressing the issue of 'Going Green' which will cover three broad topics: What should the industry do for itself; How to provide 'green' solutions; and How to make employees 'Green Warriors'. "Becoming reen is no longer a choice for firms, Government or individuals. The ubiquity of IT today, makes IT a powerful catalyst for providing systemic solutions for a green world," says Mittal.