Published By: Sukanya Nandy
Last Updated: October 20, 2023, 14:12 IST
MDI Gurgaon appointed Professor Arvind Sahay as its new director on Tuesday, October 17, following his tenure as a distinguished marketing professor at the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad. Before joining MDI, he played pivotal roles as the founding chairperson of the NSE Center for Behavioral Sciences and the chairperson of the India Gold Policy Center at IIM Ahmedabad.
“The appointment represents a significant milestone for MDI in its journey towards excellence, given Prof. Sahay’s standing in the field of marketing academia and his leadership role at IIM-A,” said MDI in an official statement.
Sahay earned his PhD in Marketing Strategy and International Business from The University of Texas at Austin from 1992 to 1996. His academic journey commenced with a PGDM, majoring in marketing and finance, from IIM Ahmedabad between 1987 and 1989. He completed his BTech in Chemical Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur from 1982 to 1986. Additionally, he gained valuable boardroom experience at the London Business School.
Additionally, his contributions extend to the publication of research in reputable international journals and the composition of over 60 cases. Throughout his career, he assumed various key leadership positions, including serving as the Dean of Alumni and External Relations (2013-16), the chairperson of PGPX (2007-09), the chairperson of Executive Education (2017-19), and the chairperson of the Marketing Area (2019-2021) at IIM Ahmedabad. Moreover, he has provided consultancy services for firms in India, SE Asia, and the UK. Recently, his work has delved into the practical applications of behavioural science within the business landscape.
Quoting from The CXO Playbook programme, Professor Arvind Sahay emphasized the significance of tailored interventions in choice architecture to facilitate the necessary behavioural changes for achieving desired results. He believed, “the right kind of intervention in a choice architecture helps to achieve the right kind of behavioural change required for desired outcomes – be it amplifying the efficiency of the sales team, or be in creating a brand that engages better with the customer, or be it in getting the creative team to adopt out-of-box thinking or be it in achieving a behavioural change that alters team dynamics – in each case leading to better organizational performance.”
In his role as the founding chairperson of the Behavioral Science Centre at IIMA, he has been actively involved in integrating neuroscience applications into advertising metrics and testing, brand positioning tests based on customer insights, and strategies for boosting employee engagement within HR functions. His recent research pursuits span a wide spectrum, including areas such as pricing, neuroscience, brand management, gold policy, FOPL, blockchain, and innovation.
Prof Sangeeta Shah, who oversees the Information Management Area at the institute, assumed the role of Acting Director at MDI Gurgaon, taking over from Dr Rajesh Chakrabarti in January 2023. MDI had earlier solicited applications for the Directorship earlier this year, with the process concluding in April 2023. Following internal deliberations and an extensive search led by a committee consisting of experts from prominent B-schools, it was officially declared that Prof Sahay would step into the position of Director.