IIMB, XLRI figure in the First Positive Impact Rating 2020 of Business Schools


The Indian Institute of Management Bangalore and XLRI Xavier School of Management are among the 30 global institutes listed in the First Positive Impact Rating 2020 of Business Schools.

IIMB is in the Level 4 list of 9 Transforming Schools and XLRI in Level 3 among 21 Progressing schools.

IIM Bangalore, XLRI in the 1st Positive Impact Ranking 2020 of B-Schools

The need for Positive Impact Rating

The main focus of Business Schools, for long, was to help students develop into competent managers with the ability to take up senior roles in business organizations, maximize profits and thus keep the shareholders happy.

However, of late, creating a positive impact on the society and promotion of sustainable business practices have assumed greater importance among MBA aspirants and corporate firms. Several of the business schools have also moved towards introducing such courses promoting corporate social responsibility (CSR) and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

It is in this context that the first edition of the Positive Impact Rating 2020 of business schools was released during the World Economic Forum (WEF) conference that took place from January 21-24 at Davos, Switzerland.

Positive Impact Rating as a Tool for Students

​Positive Impact Rating (PIR) is in support of a fundamental change in the business school landscape with regards to the schools’ societal responsibility and impact. It offers students a tool to select an education that prepares them as responsible citizens and change-makers in the 21st-century.

It is conducted by the students and for the students. This is the first time that students around the world assessed their business schools on how they perceive their positive impact in the world.

Rating to Foster Collaboration

Rather than creating a competitive ranking, the purpose is to enable learning at and across schools. A rating offers the safety of groups rather than individual ranks and intends to foster collaboration.

Schools, therefore, are positioned in five different levels, in alphabetical order. Students and the management of each participating school receive free online access to a dashboard featuring their school’s results across the different areas in comparison with the average of all schools.

This allows them to actively work towards increasing their positive impact. Some students have reported that meetings are already scheduled with the school management.

The Rating was released in the presence of stakeholders including students, business and societal representatives and business school representatives.

The impact of business schools is measured in three areas (energizing, educating, and engaging) which are further divided into seven dimensions. These dimensions include assessing the programs offered and the learning methods used, and how students actively engage.

It assesses a school’s culture and governance, which are predictors for becoming a positive impact school. And it looks at how members of the school are seen to engage in public as well as how the school is seen as serving as a role model in the eyes of students.

How the Schools Performed

International student organizations reached out to students at the top 50 schools in the Financial Times Masters in Management 2018 ranking (FT) and the top 50 schools in the Corporate Knights Green MBA ranking (CK). A total of 51 business schools participated in the rating.

The Positive Impact Rating features 30 leading schools that have performed well in this student rating. While no school made the top level 5, nine schools are featured in level 4. These “transforming schools” show a positive impact culture, embedded in governance and systems, with visible results in a number of impact dimensions.

Another 21 schools feature in level 3. These “progressing schools” show results across some impact dimensions. In the spirit of reinforcing good practice, the rating does not feature schools that were rated below level 3.

The nine transforming schools at level 4 are rated significantly better in the impact dimensions governance (23% higher) and culture (18% higher) than the rest of the schools, showing the importance of these dimensions in the change process.

Among the 51 participating schools, 26 appear in the FT and 19 in the CK rankings. Among the leading 30 schools, there are 13 FT and 11 CK schools. However, there are no top 25 FT schools among the level 4 schools, while it includes three top 10 CK schools. The FT and CK rankings measure quality differently, with the “green” CK ranking a notch closer to measuring impact.

The international student organizations Oikos, AIESEC, and Net Impact have joined forces with WWF Switzerland, OXFAM International and UN Global Compact Switzerland to launch this radically new business school rating. Together, these stakeholders represent the environment, society, business, and the next generation.

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