The Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise (ThS_CFE) at ISB, generously funded with support from Thomas Schmidheiny, Founder and Chairman of Spectrum Value Management, Ltd, Switzerland, was launched on February 7, 2015. The Centre combines knowledge, practice and innovation in the field of family business to foster the prosperity and perpetuation of family businesses across generations. The Centre engages closely with leading family businesses in India and Asia, through collaborations, conferences, workshops and forums. These engagements have helped the Centre contribute significantly to the growing body of research on various aspects of family business and emerge as the face of family business scholarship in India.

Next Generation in Family Business: Getting Future Ready

November 10 - 11, 2022



Keeping the Unity or Breaking Amicably: Leveraging Mediation in Business Families

November 16 - 17, 2022 


Family Enterprise Quarterly

Volume 1. Issue 3

July - September, 2022




The Centre's Journey

Chronicling Indian Family Enterprises



Journal Publications




White Papers


Books&Book Chapters


Working Papers

Research - Generating Knowledge that Creates Impact

The Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise at the ISB conducts and promotes cutting-edge research in the growing field of family business. Despite their significant contribution to the Indian economy, family businesses remain a largely unexplored area of research.


Founded by Professor Kavil Ramachandran in 2015 and presently led by Professor Sougata Ray, the Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise is supported by a dedicated and experienced team of research and managerial staff who contribute to the research projects, teaching, mentoring and various outreach initiatives. The Centre is also affiliated with faculty and research fellows that contribute to the teaching and research activities at the Centre respectively.

Practice and Outreach

The Centre undertakes several outreach initiatives that aim at enabling family businesses in India/Asia and other parts of the world to provide thought leadership and develop best practices for sharing among all stakeholders.

Education - A Platform for Learning and Enrichment

Transformation of family businesses require focused training inputs. To prepare and train family members associated with their businesses, operationally or otherwise to take up higher levels of responsibilities, the Centre offers an array of training programmes on different aspects of family business. The Centre is also supporting ISB in the initiative to run a unique masters level programme MFAB for young family members who wish to enter the family business in the future. In addition, students enrolled in the Post Graduate Programme in Management of the ISB gain extensive theoretical and practical knowledge about family firms from the course, “Strategy, Leadership and Resource Management in Family Business.”

Knowledge Dissemination and Networking

The Centre disseminates knowledge in the field of family business management through articles in business and popular media vehicles across the world. Several of the articles authored by members of our team have been published in leading publications. The Centre also regularly provides expert comments in media stories and articles on family business. Annually, the Centre also contributes to knowledge dissemination through practice-oriented family business research article summaries in FFI Practitioner – an online newsletter published by the Family Firm Institute, Boston, USA.

The Centre has expanded its impact through establishing a network of academic, industry and institutional linkages in India and abroad through several personal and institutional networks. In academics and research the Centre has built a strong network with faculty members from the Kellogg School of Management, University of Victoria, Ipag Business School, and University of Vermont. The Centre is an institutional member of the Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship Practices (STEP) – a global applied research initiative of top B-Schools across the world. The Centre also has strong institutional connect with industry bodies such as CII and FICCI.




CSR Mandate: An opportunity to build a Sustainable Organization

Sharing her thoughts on the reasons for the lack of adoption of CSR in letter and in spirit by the firms in India, Nupur Pavan Bang says, “Earlier, the mantra was ‘perform or perish’. Now the mantra is ‘perform, contribute-continue-repeat, else perish’. It is just a matter of time when all non-compliant firms will feel the heat from the investors, competitors who have adopted and integrated CSR with their corporate strategy, and all stakeholders

Sep 23, 2022



Reliance Industries: Daughter rises in Mukesh Ambani’s Succession Plan

Professor Kavil Ramachandran talks about Mukesh Ambani's timely and equally distributed succession plan among his three children. He says, ''unlike many Asian patriarchs who hold a tight control over their wealth till the end, he represents a "new generation of family business leaders" in Asia who've witnessed succession feuds and want to take "every step possible" to make the journey for their children smooth".

Sep 20, 2022



Women at Work

In a story about women's leadership in family-owned businesses, Professor Sougata Ray says women in business families need to be allowed to participate in family enterprises as freely as men. "There are still some families which believe that women are not supposed to join the business, especially(those run by) their parents. That postpones their opportunities to get to leadership positions.

Sep 18, 2022