Top Organization Development leaders to address at Transcendence 18: Prof Vijayakumar

Prof P Vijayakumar: Associate Dean, Alumni Affairs, TISS and Chairperson of C SOL. 

Transcendence is a flagship annual event of Centre for Social and Organisational Leadership (C SOL), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) that attracts delegates across spectrums and spheres from national and international level.

Committed to continuously advance the global and local thinking and practice of Organisation Development, Change and Leadership (ODCL), C SOL has been evolving to understand current practices and develop more effective and adaptive leadership in businesses, government, civil society organisations and communities.

Transcendence is aimed at creating a platform for exploring the emergent paradigms in OD, Change and Leadership through the showcasing of transformative efforts accomplished by organizations and communities.

Transcendence is organised by the ODCL Executive Diploma & the ODCL Masters students of TISS. The C SOL team supports them.

TISS Alums Association (TISSAA) had an interesting interaction with Dr P Vijayakumar, who is a Professor and  Chairperson at the Centre for Social and Organisational Leadership (C SOL), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, India. Prof Vijayakumar who is also Associate Dean, Alumni Affairs, TISS is fondly known as VK.

Excerpts of the interview:

You seem to be all charged up for Transcendence 18, tell us more about it?

Prof VK: Transcendence 18, like last year, will facilitate the much-required dialogue among different stakeholders for developing new partnerships and evolving ideas for concrete action. The purpose of Transcendence is to create a synergetic platform to explore possibilities, co-create ideas and ‘transcend’ in the OD, Change and Leadership space. We aim to host a forum conducive to bring forth cutting-edge ideas and raise various possibilities for what lies ‘next’, in different sectors. The intention of the conference, therefore, is to transform to truly transcend.

Could you elaborate on the main theme of the conference which is "Conscious and Compassionate Being"?

Prof VK: Transcendence refers to the holistic human existence, relating to self, others, other species and nature. The 'theme conscious and compassionate being' represents one's need to serve something greater than oneself.

Prof Vijayakumar is passionate about preparing the learners to be Change Agents. To this effect, C SOL has conceptualised and offered the first comprehensive Executive Diploma programme in Organisation Development and Change in India. This programme is well recognised by the Industry and currently offered from Chennai, Delhi and Bangalore apart from Mumbai. Understanding the demand by the Industry, C SOL has started offering the first comprehensive Masters in Organisation Development, Change and Leadership
(Masters in ODCL) from Mumbai and Hyderabad from June 2018.

Transcendence 18 has an interesting list of experts from distinct domains.

Prof VK: The Chair of OD Network USA, Prof Gary Mangiofico will address the delegates on the 'Future of OD', highlighting the importance of collaboration at various levels and the CEO of MindCrux, USA, Biswa Dash speaking on 'Sustainable Systems'. While renowned film director Ms Anjali Menon will speak on 'Diversity and Inclusion'. We have structured Ms Manisha Koirala's session to highlight the importance of resilience and bouncing back through her conversation with Mr Santhosh Babu, Chairperson, OD Alternatives. Several CEOs & C Suit leaders will speak and interact with the audience at Transcendence 18.  Also, there are engaging sessions by performing artists woven in between the conference to sustain high levels of energy during the conference. apprise on the details. So far the response from stakeholders is very encouraging. Like last year, this year too, we have a line up of great speakers, interesting design to bring out the best to facilitate required dialogue among stakeholders for concrete action.

Transcendence has become one of the most important events of TISS. What is the reason behind its massive success?

Prof VK: Transcendence provides a great opportunity for attendees to listen to many of the best practitioners and a few of the academicians in the OD, Change and Leadership field. Transcendence also gives a platform for delegates to understand the practices in similar and other sectors for comparisons and learning.

What can the delegates expect from Transcendence 18?

Prof VK: There is a list of  takeaways for delegates:

  • Insights into strategies for transformation in organizations.
  • A view to the dynamic landscape of work and opportunities to create capabilities relevant in a changing world.
  • Exposure to cutting-edge research and best practices in the world of OD, Change and Leadership.
  • Platform to build collaborations and networks that help the function evolve & equip for are rapidly changing the environment.
  • Engage with leading minds in the industry and learn from their rich experience.
  • Opportunity to showcase/articles in post-conference events.

The logo of Transcendence is striking.
Prof VK: The logo of Transcendence captures the dictum: Let’s Change, TRANSFORM, Lets rise, TRANSCEND!!!

We believe it’s time to transform our internal and external physical and mental barriers to transcend and take flight; to rise above and move beyond what is and highlight the full spectrum of colours (read open systems) in the space of OD, Change and Leadership (ODCL). Our Logo has 4 strong elements that are connected together to reflect the purpose of Transcendence. The tree of Life, The human being, Full spectrum of Colours and The Birds. To put it succinctly, the logo represents open systems, the core theme that operates the ODCL space. The tree of life reflects the depth and breadth of life. The trunk signifies the strong foundation and our deep-rooted values where the human being aims to have higher purposes in life. The Logo captures both the warm and cool colours. Warm colours represent high energy and action; Cool colours are often associated with calm, peace and serenity. Finally, the birds reflect movement, independence and freedom of choices that 'Transcendence' wants to achieve to take flight and transcend from what is to what can be.


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