IISWBM was constituted on 25th April 1953 by a resolution passed by the Senate of the University of Calcutta. This was the culmination of the joint initiative taken by the University of Calcutta, the Government of West Bengal, the Government of India and the captains of industry in India to set up for the first time a management education institute in India, a concept alien to many in the educational fraternity at that time. The institute has successfully reached its Diamond Jubilee Year, signifying 60 years of eventful journey in management education in India since that day. IISWBM, the first management institute of India, was thus established by Dr. B.C. Roy, the then Chief Minister of West Bengal as its Founder-President and Prof. D.K. Sanyal as the first Director. The Government of India, Department of Posts in recognition of 50 years of glorious existence of the first B-school in the country, released a Commemorative Postage Stamp on IISWBM, on 25th April 2004 in New Delhi.
Apart from the flagship programs MBA, MHRM, MPSM, MBA (Public System) & M.S.W, the institute conducts M.Phil and Doctoral Programs. Most of these programs are affiliated with the University of Calcutta. IISWBM is known for introducing and successfully conducting socially relevant and innovative management programs. In its Diamond Jubilee Year, IISWBM has joined hands with the largest media conglomerate in the East, ABP Pvt. Ltd., and one of the most diversified media groups in the country to offer Post Graduate Diploma Programs in Integrated Marketing Communication and in Television Management. The institute also offers specialized programs in Fire Management.