Emily Harrison was part of the CEO panel during the World CSR Congress under the theme "Possible to do well, by doing good" which took place of February 18th at the hotel Taj Lands End, Mumbai. Emily along with other eminent speakers such as Dr. Alok Bhardwaj, Executive Vice President, Canon India, Animesh Kumar, Group Head- HR&Corporate Services & Co CEO IDFC Foundation and Vikas Puthran, Vice President- Alliances and Operations, GiveIndia shared with the audience her opinion on the topic of "Mandatory 2% spend on CSR: Will it be just compliance or a trajectory for meaningful CSR?". The moderator of the panel was Ketan Kulkarni, VP & HEAD- Marketing, Corporate Communications & Sustainability, Blue Dart Express Ltd.
Some of the panelists thought that while there is some merit in this bill, it will not significantly change the way Indian Corporate are operating at a strategic business level. The bill appears to have some merit such as promoting growth in the CSR field by creating the need for professional and trained employees in each company's CSR team and allow for a more structured approach to social initiatives by giving a basic road-map for companies. A panelist felt that even if many companies will try to find loophole to limit tier CSR spending, it will at least push for an increase in corporate philanthropic giving. Emily expressed her view that once CSR will be mandated in India, companies should not view it as a check writing liability- on the contrary it ought to be considered within a core business strategy and viewed as an investment platform to build better and more sustainable brands.