ITC: Driving Public-Private Collaboration for Water Conservation in India

ITC: Driving Public-Private Collaboration for Water Conservation in India
Case Code: CSRS014
Case Length: 14 Pages
Period: 2021-2022
Pub Date: 2023
Teaching Note: Available
Price: Rs.300
Organization: -
Industry: Diversified, Manufacturing
Countries: India
Themes: Corporate Social Initiatives, Community Involvement ,Corporate Responsibility,Stakeholder Management
ITC: Driving Public-Private Collaboration for Water Conservation in India
Abstract Case Intro 1 Case Intro 2 Excerpts


The case discusses the integrated watershed development programme of Indian multi-business conglomerate ITC Limited (ITC) launched with the aim of achieving two crucial objectives – conservation of water and enrichment of soil. To tackle the water crisis, ITC collaborated with state governments, agencies, knowledge institutions, and small scale and marginalised farmers. The company worked with farmers and involved communities where it had its units to improve water use efficiency. ITC mobilized farmers into Water User Groups (WUGs) in catchment areas. With the help of the WUGs, it constructed water harvesting structures, which it financed, to provide irrigation to drought-prone areas. For maximising efficiency of water, ITC implemented water conservation measures and constructed several water harvesting structures, and reused and recycled water in its operations. For soil conservation, the company employed low-cost technologies to enhance moisture retention, arrest soil erosion, conserve rainwater, and recharge groundwater.

The company’s collaboration with farmers in micro-irrigation techniques and agronomic practices led to water savings in cultivation and to an increase in the income of the farmers as the increased water efficiency allowed the farmers to grow more crops, thereby creating sustainable livelihoods for them.

Analysts appreciated ITC for its collaborative problem-solving efforts as the company had to face several challenges with regard to stakeholder engagement and making its water conservation measures sustainable in the catchments area. Some analysts felt that more water conservation initiatives like those of ITC were needed since India was under extreme water stress. It remained to be seen how ITC would continue to tackle the challenge of water stress in India through its collaborative efforts with multiple stakeholders.


The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:

  • Understand the role of collaboration in achieving UN sustainable development goals (SDGs)
  • Explore how public-private partnerships (PPPs) can enable effective water conservation in India
  • Analyze the social, environmental, and economic impact of water conservation interventions on the society.



Sustainability 2.0; 360-degree Water Stewardship Programme; Micro-irrigation Techniques; Agronomic Practices; Water Use Efficiency; Recycling Water; Stakeholder Engagement; Collaborative Problem-solving; Sustainable Livelihoods; Demand Side Management; Supply Side Augmentation; Soil Conservation; Sustainable Agriculture; Water User Groups; United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

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