The subject of good governance in the social sector is gaining greater visibility and importance. The role of governing bodies of social purpose organisations (SPOs), be it the legal or the Advisory Council, is increasingly gaining attention. The reasons for this are both the fact that there is greater awareness of the social sector’s contribution to change and the opportunity to be part of the same as well as an increasing number of individuals thinking about a greater purpose for themselves while they continue in their existing professions.
Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), Dasra and Governance Counts, three institutions in the sector, collaborated in 2022 to offer organisations and individuals the opportunity to engage with one another through the Women on Boards program.
This report discusses the value and role of an effective Board beyond the statutory requirement for SPOs in India. The law mandates a minimum number of trustees/governing Board members for registration of an SPO and some guidelines for their functioning. However, there is limited emphasis on good governance practices within the legal mandates.
The report explores the need for SPOs to think about their Boards strategically and invest in strengthening them. It also discusses the importance of Advisory Councils as a supporting governance constituent. The report also refers to factors that create an effective Board. A competent chief functionary supported by a Board with skills in strategic thinking, organisation development, business and market acumen, complementing and supporting the executive team in various areas, will result in effectively governing the organisation.
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