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Society & Organizations Institute

Inclusive Economy

Inclusive Economy

At HEC Paris, through the S&O Institute, we aim at contributing to a more inclusive economy, where businesses seek to maximize their social impact together with their economic performance.  

inclusive eco s&o logo


The growth of the past decades has not been inclusive. Many business leaders have understood for years that non-inclusive growth is not sustainable, but the rise of global extreme poverty, the acceleration of inequality increased by the current health and economic crisis, and the appearance of social anger have driven the movement to a new stage of awareness and accelerated calls to corporate action.

The Inclusive Economy Center has been working on the contours of inclusive economy since 2008 when HEC Paris created its Social Business/Enterprise & Poverty Chair and jointly set up the Action Tank Social & Business, with stakeholders such as Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus and Martin Hirsch (then French High Commissioner for Active Solidarity and Youth). Along the years, it got the committed support of Danone, Schneider Electric, Groupe Renault, Sodexo and Veolia.

The Center draws on 14 years of experience, reflection, and interaction with the private sphere, public sphere, and civil society to address the fundamentals of an inclusive economy and business.

A report “Inclusive Business: What It Is and Why It Matters” was released by S&O as part of the B4IG (Business 4 Inclusive Growth) platform framework. We believe that the inclusive economy does not exclude anyone. It is an economy where each and every person can ‘receive’, namely essential goods and services, at affordable prices, and can also ‘give’ and contribute with dignity and for a decent salary.

We firmly believe that business cannot only be part of the problem, and they can be part of the solution: private enterprise should be an amazing driving force for social innovation and integrating people into society, provided they collaborate with other stakeholders from civil society and public authorities, as stated in sustainable development objective 17, and they co-create new economic models. This is an absolute societal need and is in a company’s best interests. In addition, we also believe that social justice, which is deeply entrenched in the economy, needs to be achieved in order to bring about peace.

We therefore adopted the term ‘inclusive economy’ because we want an approach which would speak equally to philanthropists, impact investors and companies operating within the market economy. We are currently pursuing this objective at the Society & Organizations Institute. We have committed to doing this by rolling out research and new courses and educational programs, aimed at students and managers, involving collaboration by multiple stakeholders.


Miniature News ESG report
What Gets Measured: Social factors coverage in corporate ESG frameworks is a new report published by Professors Marieke Huysentruyt, Bénédicte Faivre-Tavignot, Leandro Nardi, from the S&O Inclusive...
HEC Paris - SASI Ideas Festival - Sept. 2022
HEC’s 2022-2023 academic year kicked off with talks by a host of outstanding guest speakers largely devoted to the world’s most pressing environmental and societal issues. In the context of geopolitical...
ISSB Chairperson Emmanuel Faber kickstarted the 2022-2023 HEC Talks season with an impassioned plea to students to “reinvent the future” through resilience and a regenerative culture. The September 12...
vignette BMFSDGS
In the wake of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), HEC Professor of strategy Laurence Lehmann-Ortega along with her academic team shed a new light on companies and initiatives working in...
Immeubles avec des balcons remplis de plantes vertes.
An expert in the social and environmental aspects of running a business for almost two decades, Bénédicte Faivre-Tavignot - Associate Professor of Strategy & Business Policy at HEC Paris, and also...
une main tourne des dés pour former le mot inclusion
In recent decades we’ve seen inequalities growing in society, exacerbated in part by the current global health, social and economic crises. It falls to ambitious businesses to recognize the benefits of...
S&O - Portrait Hilary Matson- MBA alumni - vignette
Hilary Matson, HEC MBA alumna 2020 is the founder of Yūgen Earthside that aims at shaping the future of sustainable tourism. Thanks to her new online platform, she helps us to travel better to protect and...
S&O - Margault Phelip
Margault Phélip, HEC alumna 2008 is now CEO of Impact Studio, and Manager at Archipel & Co. She has kindly accepted to answer our questions with authenticity and passion. Focus on her career path and...
Marieke Huysentruyt - media
In 2020, the Society &Organizations Institute (S&O) marks 12 years of research on the notion of an inclusive global economy with the report “Inclusive Business: What it is and Why it Matters”. This third...
Graduating from the HEC Paris Master in Management program in 1988, Virginie Hélias is Procter & Gamble’s Chief Sustainability Officer. Having carved out the role for herself, she has made sustainability...
ACCELERATEUR ESS Business Projects
Master 2 students worked between 4 and 12 weeks on inclusive business projects of the L’Accelerateur ESS Ile-de-France. It was a unique experience for them to understand how committed companies can link a...
so institute - yunus - zoom conference - vignette
In the second of a series of online seminars, HEC Paris invited Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus for an hour-long exchange on bouncing back after the COVID-19 health crisis. Led by Bénédicte Faivre-Tavignot...
Accelerateur Ile-de-France, laureats de la promotion 2
HEC Paris, together with the Ile de France region, supports the leaders of the up and coming companies in inclusive social entrepreneurship by offering them the benefit of a tailor-made programme to...
paving the way to a more vignette
As Executive Director for Healthcare and Seniors, Sodexo China, Grace Han manages on-site service solutions for hospitals and rest homes. She also has extensive experience in developing major strategic...
Movement for Social*Business Impact Donors Encourage SnO Research on More Inclusive Global Economy - HEC Paris 2018
HEC Paris’ Society and Organization Center (SnO) and the Movement for Social*Business Impact (MS*BI), convened for a March 6 meeting between all six major corporate donors to share the fruits of their...
Muhammad Yunus Joins HEC Paris Initiative to Maximize Social Impact in Business
In November, HEC Paris hosted the 2016 Social Business Academia Conference featuring Nobel Prize laureate Muhammad Yunus. 113 people from around 20 countries participated in the two-day event. The co...
This summer from June 9th to June 20th HEC Paris is welcoming students from all over the world for their inaugural Summer School Program. The intensive two-week program on Inclusive and Social Business is...

Inspiring Founding Partners

S&O - Inclusive Economy Center Contacts

Bénédicte Faivre-Tavignot - HEC Paris
Executive Director of the Inclusive Economy Center
Elisabeth de Reals
Education and Event Project Manager