Perspectives from ISB

At a recent book launch President Pranab Mukherjee remarked that family and business have been interconnected for a long time. Echoing a similar thought, in a recent article on how Indian business families were adopting the Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) structure, Professor Kavil Ramachandran commented that it is not a new phenomenon. Rather it has governed the functioning of Indian business families of yore. Under the HUF system, all income went into a common pool and assets were held jointly. It reflects the essence of the joint family system, and is responsible for ensuring the economic well-being of all family members.

This renewed focus on the Indian family value system is interesting and welcome. Existing literature (Handler, 1994), not only provides an Anglo-American perspective on family values in an individualistic society, but also a Confucian perspective on family values from a collectivist society (Yan & Sorenson, 2006). Hence what is missing is detailed studies on how Indian value system guides family businesses in the sub-continent. It would also be interesting to observe how these values have undergone transition during a period of institutional transition, with the exposure to western ideologies.

 Source :  Economic Times, October 16, 2015


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