Family businesses make a major contribution towards wealth creation, job generation, and increasing competitiveness in countries around the world. As such, the unique challenges and opportunities faced by them are rapidly becoming an important subject of management research. Cognizant of these developments, a Chair was set up in 2006 at ISB, which later developed into a full-fledged Centre. It has been generously funded with support from Thomas Schmidheiny, Founder and Chairman of Spectrum Value Management, Ltd, Switzerland.

The Centre combines knowledge, practice and innovation in the field of family business to foster the prosperity and perpetuation of family businesses across generations. In its mandate to continually create platforms for the exchange of insights and knowledge among diverse stakeholders, the Centre has been engaging closely with leading family businesses in India and Asia, through conferences, workshops and forums. The bi-annual Asian Family Business Conference hosted by the Centre is one such initiative that has gained immense popularity over the years. The Centre has forged several collaborations with academic institutions and professional organizations at both the national as well as international level. These engagements have helped the Centre to contribute significantly to the growing body of research on various aspects of family business.

In the past, family businesses in India were perceived to be orthodox, unprofessional and unstable. Today, however, there is increasing awareness on the need for good governance practices and professionalization of these organizations.  Family businesses face certain unique challenges related to governance, custodianship, leadership and succession. Moreover it is highly influenced by the culture and environment in which it originates. These problems are even more acute in a multi-cultural and diverse country like India. Hence instead of a one-size-fits-all approach, they need customized solutions backed by research. In order to grow and prosper across generations, it is important for them to transform and adopt cutting edge management practices developed across the world. This is only way they can continue to thrive over several generations, creating wealth not just for the business, but for society at large.   

Over the years, the Centre has contributed significantly to the growing body of research on various aspects of family business. The Centre has also brought together faculty and practitioners from India and abroad with the aim of combining theory and practice to enhance research and innovation in the field of family business. 

Founded by Professor Kavil Ramachandran and currently led by Professor Sougata Ray, the Centre seeks to close the gap between theory and practice by creating and disseminating knowledge through research, education, publications, conferences and outreach activities in this critical field of importance. With limited management literature available on addressing the challenges faced by family businesses in India, the Centre is committed to advancing knowledge in this area.


To create value for society and business families by developing their stewardship capabilities


Be a catalyst and change agent for perpetuating the stewardship role of  business families especially from India and other emerging markets by creating and disseminating world class knowledge and by providing reliable and attractive platforms for sharing and learning