Poverty remains a strong reality in the developing world, even in countries which experience high growth rates. It is also on the rise in many – if not all – developed countries. To fight poverty, philanthropic action, public authorities and international institutions have shown their limits. Quite the opposite is the situation of forward-looking firms, which develop creative market-based solutions to alleviate poverty, at times in partnership with civil society and public authorities, in an ecosystemic approach.
Missions and Objectives of The Program
The aim of the Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Certificate is to contribute to training a new generation of managers, aware of societal challenges and aspiring to be part of the solution, regardless of their professional activity.
Across the Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Certificate, the objectives of HEC Paris and its partners are:
- To train students in innovative business approaches that reduce poverty, by offering new economic models in both developed and developing countries
- To investigate new ways of co-creation and distribution of wealth to reduce poverty;
- To help participants acquire key questioning skills on the role of business in society
- To allow students to incorporate their valuable experience in humanitarian associations into their professional life.
The objective is not necessarily for all students to work in Social Business, but for them to acquire an awareness of the importance of SB in their field of work.
The Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Chair develops programs and research.
Its aims are:
- To contribute to training a new generation of managers, aware of societal challenges and aspiring to be part of the solution, regardless of their professional activity.
- To develop quality research on strategic innovation in societal fields on the theme of social business, and the ways in which business can fight poverty.
- To contribute to an inclusive economy, in France and in other developed countries as well as in developing countries. This initiative brings together HEC academics, large firms, government members and heads of the non-profit organizations with the objective of alleviating poverty through business.
The Chair is co-presided by:
- Professor Muhammad Yunus, known as the ‘banker of the poor’, economist and Bangladeshi entrepreneur, is the founder of the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, and the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner. He has also been HEC Honoris Causa Profeassor since 2005.
- Martin Hirsch, graduate of the Ecole Normale Supérieure and the ENA, former President of the "Emmaus France" charity organization, was until recently High Commissioner for Active Solidarities and High Commissioner to Youth in the French government. He is now Head of the Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris.
The Chair receives financial support from Danone, Schneider Electric, Renault and private donors.