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POSCO’s great Indian fiasco

Shubham (Department of Operations and Systems, Indian Institute of Management Raipur, Raipur, India)
Vinay Kumar Kalakbandi (Department of Operations and Supply Chain Management, Institute of Management Technology, Hyderabad, Telangana, India)
Shashank Mittal (Department of OB & HRM, Rajagiri Business School, Cochin, Kerala, India)

Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies

ISSN: 2045-0621

Publication date: 12 December 2018


Learning outcomes

The case may give students experience with the types of a situation they may encounter when running their own companies or serving as consultants in terms of identifying relevant information and appropriate approaches to dealing with local communities in projects involving the exploration and exploitation of natural resources. The case encourages students to critique the strategy of a firm in managing their different stakeholders. The case may also enhance their understanding of the “new” roles expected of corporations when engaging in projects involving local communities in developing countries. The case can be used to promote awareness of the social and environmental impact of industries associated with the exploration and exploitation of natural resources. Within developed or developing countries, master’s students are often employed by multinational corporations, many of which operate in natural resource industries. A greater understanding of the economic, social, and environmental challenges inherent in corporate social responsibilities programs in these industries may enhance their ability to deal with such situations. Such students are also increasingly likely to find work with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) helping local communities deal with largescale projects and confront major corporations.

Case overview/synopsis

The case is about the POSCO-India’s project to build 12 MTPA integrated steel plant in the Indian state of Odisha in 2005. The case presents the history of the project, recognizing the different stakeholders groups, the perspectives and interests of different stakeholders groups, the various actions taken by POSCO-India, and the results of the various engagement efforts of POSCO to develop the project. The case deals with the perspective of POSCO-India, Government of Odisha (GoO) and the local community getting affected by POSCO’s project on the issues of social, environmental, and economic sustainability. The case also discusses POSCO’s effort to engage with the local community and state government. The case tries to analyze the issues that come with developing big infrastructure projects. The case provides a framework for evaluating the complexity in engaging with the different stakeholder groups. The paper uses a framework for analyzing stakeholders based on their power, legitimacy, and urgency of their claims. The case will also demonstrate the complex institutional set-up in emerging markets and due to which sometimes it becomes difficult for organizations to implement such exploration projects to fulfill their social and environmental commitments. Finally, the case helps students to explore the implications of large-scale industrial projects especially in developing countries and analyze critically the corporate-society relationship.

Complexity academic level

The case was developed for master’s level course in business strategy, consulting, business policy, corporate governance, and corporate social responsibility, business ethics, and corporate sustainability in a 90 minutes session.

Supplementary materials

Teaching Notes are available for educators only. Please contact your library to gain login details or email to request teaching notes.

Subject code

CSS 11: Strategy.



Disclaimer. This case is written solely for educational purposes and is not intended to represent successful or unsuccessful managerial decision-making. The authors may have disguised names; financial and other recognizable information to protect confidentiality.


, S., Kalakbandi, V.K. and Mittal, S. (2018), "POSCO’s great Indian fiasco", Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies, Vol. 8 No. 4.



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