16 & 17 November 2017 @ India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

Guidelines on Product Sustainability Information

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 0930 – 1100 Silver Oak, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host:

Session brief:

Many companies know the benefits of producing sustainable products, and consumers often indicate a preference for buying sustainable products. However it is evident that the purchase of sustainable products is not the most common practice and that this is hindered in part by a lack of clear, reliable information.
Claims, labels, campaigns and other product sustainability information tools can help consumers to make informed decisions on what they buy, and how they use and dispose of it. This was recognized by the international community through target 12.8 of the Sustainable Development Goals: “By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature.”

Many good initiatives are already on the way –driven by industry, government or non-governmental organizations. However, there is still room for improvement. In response, the ‘Guidelines for providing product sustainability information’ were developed through a working group of the UN’s 10 Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production, more precisely its Consumer Information Programme. Over 35 organizations supported this exercise, which was led by UN Environment and the International Trade Centre.[1] CRB joined the process in 2016 and will act as a help desk for the Guidelines’ road testing in India.

This workshop forms part of the global road testing of the Guidelines, to ensure their applicability and usefulness on the ground. The goal of the road testing is not to check if or where organizations are making mistakes, but to support them to make their claims as credible and efficient as possible, while improving the Guidelines through feedback.

Benefits of FSC standards in managing forest resources

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1130 – 1300 Tamarind, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: Forest Stewardship Council®

The Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) is an independent, not for profit, non-government organization established to support environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests. FSC’s vision is that the world’s forests meet the social, ecological, and economic rights and needs of the present generation without compromising those of future generations. FSC International Head Quarters is located in Bonn(Germany). The Asia Pacific Regional Office operates from Hong Kong.

Session Brief:

The roundtable contributes to the theme of the ISS 2017 by strategic inclusion of all key stakeholders in sustainable management of forest resources, thus supporting the local communities in and around these forests. On one hand, the government’s role is important in formulating strategies for management of national forest resources, and on the other hand state forest corporations are already playing a leading role by undertaking voluntary certifications to demonstrate benefits of sustainable forest resources. The roundtable facilitates dialogue among state forest corporations, Indian companies, MNCs as well as small and medium enterprises and social and environmental NGOs to explore how sustainable use of forest resources could be achieved with uptake of voluntary sustainability standards.


Adam Beaumon

As Asia Pacific Regional Director at the Forest Stewardship Council, FSC, Adam is driving industry change towards responsible forest management with the help of FSC’s three chambers of membership, certified businesses and partners. A trained Forester with a Masters in Environmental Law, Adam has significant experience in public and private regulatory systems and natural resource management with past roles with International Consultants GHD and the Victorian Environment Protection Authority (EPA). Adam is the Chair of the Australia New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG) National Regulators Community of Practice and a past Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA).

Dr T R Manoharan

Dr T R Manoharan is a sustainability professional based in New Delhi. He is Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Project Coordinator for India and visiting faculty in the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi. Dr Manoharan’ s experience and interest areas include development and management of projects, stakeholder engagements, research, teaching and policy analysis in the area of environmental economics, forest conservation, trade and environment, environment regulation, forest certification and sustainable standards.

Prof. Prodyut Bhattacharya

Prof. Prodyut Bhattacharya is former-Dean of University School of Environment Management at GGS Indraprastha University, Govt. of NCT of Delhi, New Delhi.  Currently he is Professor in the area of Natural Resource Management. He has published more than 130 research papers in international and national journals including articles, technical reports, and conference papers and co-authored six books. His research interest pertain to the broad NRM issues and Livelihood linkages; in subject area of Biodiversity Conservation, Forest Ecology, Sustainable NTFP Management, effect of climate change, Urban-forestry, Forest Governance, Certification and Sustainable Forest Management.

Ms. Bhavna Prasad

Sr. Advisor – Sustainable Business, WWF-India

Bhavna Prasad advises WWF-India’s Sustainable Business programme across priority areas, such as agriculture,water, finance sector, climate change and forestry. She has over 15 years of diverse experience ranging frombanking, environmental consulting to working with environmental NGOs and multilaterals. Prior to WWF,Bhavna was a Vice President with JPMorgan Chase in New York. She covered a range of responsibilities, fromimplementing global environmental and social risk management policies to developing green business

Sustainability Education and Teaching for Academic Institutions

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1130 – 1530 Silver Oak-1, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: UNPRME INDIA

Session brief:

The Centre for Responsible Business (CRB), an India based not for profit think-tank, has been successfully conducting the ‘India and Sustainability Standards: International Dialogues and Conference’ (ISS), as international Multi-stakeholder Dialogue Platform since 2014, and is in the process of launching several sector and based forums.

The academic workshop on Sustainability Education conducted as a part of CRB’s 3rd Annual Conference in 2016 (16-18 November 2016), reaffirmed the need for an ongoing discussion for academic institutes on sustainability and highlighted the crucial need to integrate different elements of Sustainable/Responsible Business across various topics of management curricula. CRB is now taking the next step at its 4th Annual Conference (15-17 November 2017) by exploring how such ‘integration’ could be actually undertaken, thereby ensuring continuity of this dialogue through this platform. CRB would be undertaking this session in partnership with UNPRME India.


Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1130 – 1730 Theatre, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: Global Production Network Studies

Session Brief:

GPN Studies and CRB are convening this multi-stakeholder consultation in order to discuss a topic of increasing relevance in a world where production is increasingly organized in global and regional value chains. Brands or lead firms in these value chains have a great influence on the economic condition of supplier firms and on employment conditions in these supplier firms. This was the core of the discussion at the 2016 International Labour Conference of the ILO.

We are convening a multi-stakeholder to discuss this topic which is important in attaining sustainable and just production in global value chains. While the focus of the discussion will be on purchasing practices and their impact on supplier firms and workers in the garment value chains, the consultation will also cover leather products and automobile value chains.

We will invite various stakeholders to participate in this half-day consultation – brands, suppliers, government and related industry bodies, associations of small and medium enterprises, workers, and civil society organizations.


1) Prof Dev Nathan, Coordinator, GPN Studies

2) Dr. Bimal Arora, Chairperson, CRB

3) Prof Dev Nathan, Coordinator, GPN Studies

Sustainability in the Palm Oil Industry in India – Getting our Act Together

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1400 – 1530 Tamarind, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: Rainforest Alliance 

Rainforest Alliance is a leading international NGO promoting and facilitating sustainable supply chains in tropical commodities. It has worked in palm oil since 2012, undertaking assessments of social and environmental risks on large plantations and advising companies on policies for sustainable production. It maps supply chains and helps companies buying palm oil to achieve commitments to sustainable sourcing. It supports smallholders to develop efficient production systems and certifies large and small production units though the Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN) standard.

Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)

The vision of Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) is to transform markets globally to make sustainable palm oil the norm. In response to the urgent and pressing global call for sustainably-produced palm oil, the (RSPO) was formed in 2004 with the objective of promoting the growth and use of sustainable oil palm products through credible global standards and engagement of stakeholders. . It ensures that no new primary forest or other high conservation value areas are sacrificed for palm oil plantations, that plantations apply accepted best practices and that the basic rights and living conditions of millions of plantation workers, smallholders and indigenous people are wholly respected. It is with this view that the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) proactively engages with oil palm growers, oil processors, food companies, retailers, NGOs and investors to work together towards a global supply of palm oil that is produced in a socially and environmentally responsible way.

Session Brief:

Despite good progress on sustainable palm oil production and certification, 80% of palm oil produced remains uncertified and half of all certified palm oil goes ‘unsold’ in the marketplace, meaning that over 45 million metric tonnes of oil is sold without a sustainability claim each year. What is preventing important consuming countries such as India from tapping into the growing interest and improving availability of sustainable products, and how can stakeholders such as supply chain companies, brands, government, and civil society help to drive more uptake in the near term?


Nicole Pasricha

Nicole Pasricha, of Toronto, Canada is Manager of Markets Transformation at the Rainforest Alliance, supporting consumer goods and retail companies in their sustainable sourcing strategies across commodities such as palm oil, coffee, tea, cocoa, and paper/packaging. Prior to joining the Rainforest Alliance, Nicole served as director of inclusive rural finance at MEDA, managing international development programs in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, and held positions at CGAP/The World Bank(Washington) and Banco ProCredit (El Salvador).

Kamal Seth

Kamal Seth is the India Representative for Outreach & Engagement for the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm oil. He is also the founder and chief happiness officer of Human Circle Foundation, creator of Young India Challenge and an influencer for the global goals for sustainable development. In the last 10 years, he has led diverse for-profit and not-for-profit organizations to transform the ecosystem. Some of them include, AIESEC, the world’s largest youth run organization in 120+ countries for international exchange program and leadership development and Human Circle, one of the most influential communities of people driving the #DoWhatYouLove movement through initiatives like ‘Young India Challenge’.

Making Renewable Energy Supply Chains Sustainable: Blending Science with Good Governance and Ethical Materials Sourcing

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1400 – 1530 Silver Oak 2, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: Deakin University

Session brief:

Internationally, governance and policy processes and frameworks for resource efficiency and sustainable supply chains are mushrooming. Yet, while researchers, entrepreneurs and businesses are rapidly driving the science of new alternative/renewable energy technologies, there is still little consideration of blending the science with good governance of materials sourcing, respect for land-holders rights, ethical supply chains, and life-cycle and circular economy impacts.

What is the road-map for joining up new technology with good governance and ethical materials sourcing?

Despite the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) providing a comprehensive framework for good governance, there is still much room for linking the SDGs with renewable energy science. How do the SDGs assist more efficient and ethical mineral extraction, processing, product design, production, consumption and recycling of waste?


Dr Natalie Ralph

Natalie is an Associate Research Fellow for the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Electromaterials Science (ACES), and is based at the Alfred Deakin Institute, Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. Natalie is part of the Ethics, Policy and Public Engagement (EPPE) team, focusing on energy technologies. She researches the risks and opportunities, policy and regulatory impact and supply chain issues of alternative energy technologies and the materials they use, to assess their impacts on conflict, sustainable development, equity, access and resilience. Prior to this, she received her PhD on mining and oil companies in conflict-prone areas and corporate peace building in 2012. Natalie has worked in industry, business, and formerly held government positions in policy and project management with the Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Queensland Government, and the Department of Victorian Communities, Victorian Government where she worked on portfolios including Corporate Social Responsibility, youth, women, and education export.

Prof. Linda Hancock

Prof. Linda Hancock holds a Personal Chair in Public Policy at The Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia. She is a Chief Investigator on the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Electromaterials Science (ACES), in the Ethics, Policy and Public Engagement (EPPE) team, focusing on energy technologies. Research interests include: corporate social responsibility (CSR), governance and regulation of renewable energy technologies and the materials they use, public policy analysis, applied social policy, regulatory theory and global governance of business and human rights.She has been a CI on seven national Australian Research Council research grants.

Paranjoy Guha Thakurta

Paranjoy is an Indian journalist, political commentator, author and a documentary film maker. He has worked with with major media houses like Business India, Businessworld, The Telegraph, India Today and The Pioneer. His 2014 book Gas Wars: Crony Capitalism and the Ambanis, co-authored with Subir Ghosh and Jyotirmoy Chaudhuri, dealt with alleged irregularities of the prices of natural gas in the Indian market.

Shikhar Jain

Principal Counsellor, Confederation of Indian Industry

Shikhar Jain has over 20 years of experience working with variety of industries, where he has designed, implemented and integrated Quality, Environmental, Health & Safety and Social programs/management systems in over 100 individual facilities and for corporate-wide operations. Shikhar has developed and implemented best practices for several top Indian firms, including in areas of improved operational efficiency, good EHS practices and enhanced compliance management.

ABG Model of Sustainable Business Practices

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 1600 – 1730 Tamarind, IHC, New Delhi

Competition Vs Cooperation among Voluntary Sustainability Standards

Date Time Venue
17th November 2017 1600 – 1730 Silver Oak 1, IHC, New Delhi

Host / Co-host: Rainforest Alliance

Session Brief:

The growth of sustainability over the last several years has created a strong market for voluntary standards. The leading ISEAL members across the agricultural field- Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and UTZ- have all recorded growing numbers year on year of certified farms and smallholder groups. Other voluntary standards have also grown; in India, Trustea is an example, with now the largest volume of certified tea.

These certification systems compete with one another for market share. Usually it is the brand companies that drive demand for a certification scheme, selecting the one that most closely matches their brand positioning and-or is strong in their important markets. Retail companies are increasingly using certification schemes for their own brands. Some brand companies do work with more than one certification. For example, Unilever and Tata Global Beverages buy Rainforest Alliance certified tea for export markets and also certify with Trustea for sale in India. Mars Incorporated, one of the largest chocolate companies, has different products in European markets with Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and UTZ certification seals. More often, a company selects one scheme and hence the competition to secure that preference is very strong.

This competitive situation though has drawbacks. For producers, it can imply cost and complication. They may need to meet more than one certification standard to fulfill requirements of different customers; and those markets are not always sustained. This can imply investments that are not supported by a long-term return. Traders and processors need to train technicians in different systems and manage different operations- for example, rules on segregation of different materials are not always the same among schemes. Brands are concerned that customers are confused by different seals and as a result give less value to them.

In this context, certification schemes and ISEAL Alliance have made efforts over the years to find efficiencies in their operations. Just as competitive companies often work together to reduce barriers to sustainability which affect them all, so certification schemes also undertake such pre-competitive collaboration to undertake joint research and follow-up discussion on issues, for example pesticides. Schemes sometimes actually support other schemes. For example, Rainforest Alliance is an associate member of the Round Table for Sustainable Palm Oil and sits on two of its working groups. It is likewise a member of the Technical Committee of Trustea. In September 2017, UTZ and Rainforest Alliance announced their intention to merge and form a single sustainable certification scheme.

This session will consider the upsides and downsides of competition and collaboration in voluntary certification and the challenges that arise when schemes attempt to collaborate.

Panel members: Tata Global Beverages, McLeod Russel, ISEAL Alliance (to be confirmed)


Closing Plenary

Date Time Venue
17th November 2017 1800 – 1930 Jacaranda, IHC, New Delhi

Towards Sustainable Disclosure Standards

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 14:00-15:30 Jacaranda, IHC, New Delhi

Co-Host: Praxis Institute for Participatory Practices


Dr Amita Joseph:

Dr. Amita V. Joseph has a PhD from Deakin University (Australia), a law Degree from Delhi University, post graduation in Human Rights Law from the Law Institute Delhi and a PGDM in management from Anna Institute of Management. She has worked in the Corporate, legal and development sectors as a adviser for three decades & has been a trainer and teacher. As a lawyer she has worked on a number of public interest causes. Amita serves on the board of a number of non profits including BCF & CRB and is on a number of committees of Companies and the ethics committee Lady Irwin College ( Delhi University).

Rajib Kumar Debnath

Rajib Kumar Debnath, with a professional background in Civil Engineering and a Post Graduate Management qualification, is an independent management expert, with over 20 years of consulting/audit experience, primarily in the areas of Sustainability, CSR, ESG, Supply Chain andEnergy. He hadserved in leadership roles for over 15 years, in leading and growing the “Sustainability and CSR” service streams of the Indian/Regional chapters of consulting majors Deloitte, EY and Grant Thornton. He is currently a member/convener of various committees set up by Bureau of Indian Standards for development of National and International Policies, with a special mention to development of Indian Standard on Corporate Social Responsibility and an Extra Financial based Indian Assurance Standard, for which he is the technical lead for drafting the standards.

Viraf Mehta

Viraf is a social anthropologist by training and has been at the forefront of the corporate responsibility scene in India for over 25 years. His professional career has included working with both leadership companies (Tata Steel) and pioneering NGOs (Partners in Change), during which period he has served on several National and International committees focused on corporate responsibility issues. More recently he served as a member of the Drafting Committee of the National Voluntary Guidelines promoted by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. For the past decade, he has been actively involved, both nationally and internationally, with the human rights and business interface. Viraf currently works as an independent consultant on corporate responsibility and is based out of Delhi and Gurgaon.

Khurram Naayab

KhurramNaayabis a Corporate Responsibility Strategist whose academic background includes Post Graduation in Social Work and Post Graduate Diploma in Management. As a CSR professional at Cairn India, Khurram has been instrumental in leading the company’s CSR portfolio with key programs under Health, Education, Sanitation and Agri. He was also instrumental in rolling key government initiatives like “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan”, “Digital India”, BetiBachaoBetiPadhao”, and “Skill India”.

Khurram is a certified trainer of Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Guidelines and also a SA8000 certified auditor. Apart from this Khurram is also working towards integrating Corporate Responsibility education (research and teaching) in the core curricula of Business Schools.Prior to joining Cairn India, he has worked for Partners in Change, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Association for Stimulating Know How (ASK) and UN High Commissioner for Refugees. He has also contributed variuous CSR and Sustainability articles related Corporate Responsibility.

Guidelines for providing product sustainability information

Date Time Venue
16th November 2017 14:00-15:30 Jacaranda, IHC, New Delhi

Co-Host: 10YFP Consumer Information Programme

Co-host brief:

The Consumer Information Programme of the 10 Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP) is a global platform supporting the provision of quality information on goods and services, to engage and assist consumers in sustainable consumption. It implements and supports projects; undertakes research; shares good practice and policies; and provides collaboration opportunities. The Programme is led by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), Germany; the Ministry of Environment and Forestry of Indonesia, and Consumers International; and brings together a network of public, private and third sector actors.



Head of Sustainability, Good and Green, Godrej Industries

Tony Henshaw

Chief Sustainability Officer, Aditya Birla Group

Norma Tregurtha,

Director of Policy and Outreach, ISEAL Alliance

Joseph Wozniak,

Head, Trade for Sustainable Development Programme (T4SD), International Trade Centre

S Karthikeyan,

Confederation of Indian Industries