Why Activist Hedge Funds Target Socially Responsible Firms, and How Executives and Investors Can Counteract Them
Increasingly powerful and influential, activist hedge funds are forces to be reckoned with. With their controversial tactics aimed at maximizing shareholder profit, they undermine sustainability practices, which they consider wasteful. Indeed, not only do they tend to suppress the corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities of the companies they target, they also target companies with stronger CSR records in the first place, as a new study reveals. But its authors Mark DesJardine, Rodolphe Durand, and Emilio Marti also show that these companies can divert the attention of activist hedge funds, and that policymakers and socially minded investors can intervene, too.
cascad: A new certifying organization to help double-check scientific results
While scientific findings need to be assessed by peers and journal referees, the confidentiality of original data often makes the process arduous. An accredited organization launched by Christophe Pérignon (HEC Paris) and colleagues with access to the original research data can now ensure reproducibility of results. This not only promises huge gains in time and effort for researchers but will also shore up trust in scientific results.
Walking the Talk: Why Companies Should be Politically Transparent
More and more companies flaunt their policies regarding social or environmental sustainability. However, these same companies may promote policies that contradict their stated CSR objectives through their political actions. Enough is enough, says a group of top researchers (including Rodolphe Durand and Magali Delmas) arguing for political transparency in a paper that won the California Management Review’s Best Article Award 2019.
Making a Change: Teaching Sustainable and Inclusive Business
“Continuing to do business as usual is no longer an option,” argues Professor Bénédicte Faivre-Tavignot. She explains the push at HEC Paris to develop programs dedicated to sustainability and inclusive business and, just as importantly, to integrate those principles throughout the business school’s mainstream core offerings.
Posing Dilemmas: an MBA Ethics Course Incites Students to Question Themselves and their Beliefs
Five years after its launch as a core course, Ethics and Sustainability is now one of the most successful courses in the HEC MBA program. Through a lively combination of debate, discussion, game playing, and surveys, see how this course leads students to question their own beliefs, gain an understanding of other points of view, and become better decision makers in the process.
A story of continuous innovation
Reinventing Business Education
Blended teaching, learning by doing, virtual classrooms, simulation games... Pedagogy at HEC Paris is reinventing itself, with professors experimenting with new ways to train and coach the leaders of tomorrow in a changing and challenging environment. Regularly, Knowledge@HEC will share stories and insights about pedagogical innovation, via interviews with our professors, program directors, chief digital officer, and digital learning staff. They explain their new teaching practices, how they integrate technology to best enhance the learning experience and open up new opportunities for HEC Paris.
Reinventing Business Education
Editorial by Marc Vanhuele, Professor of Marketing and Associate Dean. We live in a world of constant transformation. The role of research and education at a business school like HEC is to constantly innovate in order to give our students the knowledge, skills and mindset to live and work in a world with opportunities and challenges that may already have shifted by the time they graduate.
The Role of Empathy in Corporate Social Initiatives
One out of five children in France live below the poverty line, which means a household with two children lives on a collective income of less than 1,700 Euro per month. When poverty strikes, it strikes everywhere, ruthlessly so: higher instances of diabetes related to obesity; sleep deprivation due to threadbare mattresses; lack of relaxing hobbies; noisier, more crowded, low quality housing conditions (or no home at all); academic failure; etc.
Finding a better business approach to human rights
With globalization, reports of human rights violations in the manufacturing of products for multinationals have risen dramatically. According to the International Labour Organization, more people than ever before are being driven into forced labor across the world. How can we find a better balance between human rights and business?
Entrepreneurship in Senegal: a Solution for Promoting Development
A shortage of jobs in Senegal means people are forced to fend for themselves to generate their own income. This “survival entrepreneurship” could be a unique opportunity for the country, however, if used as a catalyst to create SMEs with the capacity to develop long-term activities. Pauline Lebas and Elisabeth Gaydon surveyed a wide range of actors in an attempt to map out the key issues and challenges facing entrepreneurs in Senegal, decompartmentalizing hitherto closed worlds in the process.