Press Releases

HEC Paris launches the Movement for Social * Business Impact

28 November 2016

HEC Paris is proud to announce the launch of an ambitious initiative: the Movement for Social * Business Impact. This movement aims at contributing to a more inclusive economy, where businesses seek to maximize their social impact together with their economic performance.

The Movement for Social * Business Impact builds on the academic research and teaching by the HEC Paris Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Chair. The Chair, funded by Danone, Schneider Electric and Renault, was created in 2009 and is co-chaired by 2006 Peace Nobel Prize Professor Muhammad Yunus and Martin Hirsch, former High Commissioner for Active Solidarity against Poverty in France, and currently Head of the Greater Paris University Hospitals. The Chair in turn supported the creation of the Action-Tank Social & Business, designed to incubate inclusive business models fighting poverty in France. Since 2010, the Action-Tank has helped develop and implement innovative poverty alleviation projects, bringing together companies, NGOs, public and academic authorities.

The Movement for Social * Business Impact will focus on four key actions:

  • Catalyzing world-class research on business social impact and social business by building on partnerships with the best international academic teams.
  • Strengthening and broadening the teaching opportunities concentrating on social business impact, training a new generation of managers.
  • Accelerating the deployment, and scaling up social business projects incubated in France.
  • Providing institutional resources to develop international social business incubation models, which offer essential goods and services to the poorest populations.  

To co-construct the Movement for Social * Business Impact over a three-year period, the three initial funders of the Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Chair - Danone, Schneider Electric and Renault - will be joined by three new corporate partners: Sodexo, Veolia and Total. BCG consulting firm, in partnership with Yunus Social Business, will further support the Movement at a national and global level, as part of its Social Impact Practice.

The Movement for Social * Business Impact will be managed by the Society & Organization (SnO) Center of HEC Paris and by the Action Tank Social & Business.


The Society & Organization (SnO) Center of HEC Paris is an inter-disciplinary research center teaching on the contemporary challenges that organizations face and focusing on how organizations mold society. The SnO Center contributes to the understanding of these phenomena and prepares future generations of managers to lead in complex environments.

Since its inception six years ago, over 1,000 HEC students have been directly exposed to the Social Business / Enterprise and Poverty Chair courses and programs.  The MOOC “How to become entrepreneur of change”, co-created by the Chair and Ticket4Change, has added 40,000 more participants. The Chair belongs to the SnO Center.

The Action Tank Social & Business combines concrete, breakthrough incubation-driven coalitions of private, public, civil society organizations and social entrepreneurs. It currently runs a dozen start-up business experimentation projects in key areas such as access to social housing, mobility, nutrition, energy and utility, insurance, and banking. For the past six years, the results drawn from the Action-Tank business experimentation has informed HEC research and teaching and French public policy on poverty alleviation efforts.

About HEC Paris

Specializing in management education and research, HEC Paris offers a complete and unique range of educational programs for the leaders of tomorrow: Masters programs, Summer School, MBA, PhD, Executive MBA, TRIUM Global Executive MBA, open-enrolment and custom executive education programs.

Founded in 1881 by the Paris Chamber of Commerce and Industry, HEC Paris is a founding member of the Université Paris-Saclay.  It boasts a faculty of 138 full-time professors, more than 4,400 students and over 8,000 managers and executives in training each year.

HEC Paris was ranked second business school in Europe by the Financial Times’ overall business school ranking in December 2015.

Press contact:   Julie Dobiecki, +33 1 39 67 94 39,

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