Sustainability forum: How the tech sector continues to enable sustainability transitions in India

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Sustainability forum: How the tech sector continues to enable sustainability transitions in India
In a special conversation about how tech industry can bring sustainability transition in India
India seeks to boost its economy to $5 trillion over the next few years, and it continues to climb the ladder as one of the world's largest economies. Meanwhile, the country has also promised to reduce its emission intensity by 45% by 2030 compared to the 2005 levels in pursuit of achieving net zero emissions by 2070. As a result, decarbonising our economy is a top priority for India, and its leadership position in technology will be the key to enabling this transition.
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From efficient ESG management to net-zero carbon emissions, Indian tech companies are gradually raising the bar for corporate sustainability. With numerous emerging green technologies, they are aiding sustainability transitions for other sectors as well. Technology has benefited all businesses in their efforts to innovate, compete, and gain customers as they work toward a better tomorrow. However, technology companies have delegation beyond purely financial growth to succeed over the long term, to be sustainable on all fronts.
In terms of sustainability, Indian tech companies have led the way by using their resources and platforms to mitigate the effects of climate change. In 2020, Infosys became one of the first companies to go carbon neutral three decades before the average global timeline of 2050. Blockchain, AI, machine learning, and quantum computing are some emerging technologies aiding sustainability transitions and ESG disclosures across the globe. And the Indian tech sector is at the forefront of deploying these revolutionary technologies for a better tomorrow.
In light of this, Business Insider India's Sustainability Insider held an editorial roundtable with senior India's tech leaders on the sector's journey towards sustainability in collaboration with NASSCOM, an Indian non-governmental trade association and advocacy group, focused mainly on the technology industry of India. The conversation was part of our year-long awareness campaign on the theme "Only One Earth: Sustaining People, Planet and Prosperity".
Catch the full interview here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wx99LRZVS4
The discussion encapsulates how the tech sector is enabling sustainability transitions in India as the country prepares for rapid economic growth and development. Panellists explained how sustainability had formed a core priority for most tech companies in India not only to attract customers but also to retain talent, save cost, develop efficient technologies, and comply with global regulations. Here’re some excerpts from the panel discussion.
Jagdish Mitra, Chief Strategy Officer and Head of Growth at Tech Mahindra, says, "Sustainability transitions are driven by a variety of factors. One of them is the fact that the workforce within the IT industry, which is a very resource-intensive, knowledgeable workforce, is demanding it. They choose what kind of company they want to work with and what they do to the ecosystem. The talent pool that we work with is highly aware and extremely concerned about sustainability.”
Seema Ghanekar, Chief Delivery Officer – Industrial Products and Head Sustainability, L&T Technology Services, says, "The awareness of our employee base actually makes it a bit easier for us as an organisation to drive the ESG agenda. The social and governance elements have always been there as a industry, and the environmental part is where we are now emphasizing more on how we can comply with the expectations of the customers."
Srikanth Karra, CHRO, Mphasis, says, “Newer generation is not necessarily seeking instant gratification of money and hierarchy. They want to learn and want to have a sense of purpose where they are working. Therefore, a company, even a startup, must have a larger purpose towards which they work. It can be a social purpose or ESG, but it's a good idea to differentiate yourself in terms of sustainability. Quantum computing, we believe, is the next big thing that will happen, and further research into it will be a big advantage to ESG”.
Sangeeta Gupta, Senior VP and Chief Strategy Officer, NASSCOM, says, "The advantage of the tech industry is that we are starting from a position of strength. By nature, we are not an industry that is known for high pollution. For a very young startup fighting for survival, I think ESG may look overwhelming. We can start small; if it is mainly about the environment, just measure your carbon footprint.”
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Today, a majority of 64 Indian companies that pledged to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under the Science-Based Target Initiative (SBTi) — a global corporate coalition to promote science-based target setting for climate change mitigation — are from the tech sector. As the sector continues to remain competitive in sustainability aspects, it does impart a few lessons for other sectors to step up and demonstrate their commitment to sustainability.
This panel discussion and article are part of an editorial collaboration of Business Insider with NASSCOM, as part of a year-long (2022-23) campaign on the theme “Only One Earth: Sustaining People, Planet and Prosperity” by Business Insider India’s Sustainability Insider . Catch the full interview here:


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