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Africa at the heart of HEC Paris’ international strategy

Francois Collin, Deputy Director for International Development at HEC Paris, made a three-day visit to Abidjan at the end of January, accompanied by an important delegation to underline the importance of the African continent in the international strategy of the school. First of all, the visit aimed to acknowledge the success of the CAP 2020 training programme, co-constructed with the Ivorian State for the executives of its civil service. Another objective of the visit was to meet with academic partners (INP-HB) and institutional partners, such as the CGE-CI or the French Embassy.

Délégation HEC Paris (bureau Afrique, HEC Alumni, DI)

Presentation of CAP 2020 certificates

On Friday the 24th of January 2020, 440 members of the Ivorian  administration received their CAP 2020 certificate  during a formal ceremony held in the auditorium of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in the presence of the high authorities.

The Ivorian government partnered with HEC Paris in 2017 to strengthen the managerial capacities of the executives in its administration. This co-constructed training programme is entitled CAP 2020 (Cap pour une Administration Performante à l'horizon 2020).

For three years it brought together more than 2,500 executives from 17 ministries and institutions, including the Presidency, the Prime Minister's Office and the General Secretariat of the Government.

440 managers were thus able to successfully complete a certification course, while 2,250 non-managerial executives were able to take part in a large one-day workshop on performance issues.

This program, carried out entirely in Abidjan, has been adapted to the context and challenges of the economic and social specificities of Côte d'Ivoire. Its main objective is to introduce a managerial culture of performance into the administrative organization.

Groupe de participants pour remise des certificats CAP2020 à Abidjan-Jan2020
Participants receiving their CAP 2020 Executive Certificate


Lancer écharpes des participants lors de la remise des certificats CAP2020 à Abidjan-Jan2020


A diversified offer of HEC programs

Contributing to the training of African leaders and entrepreneurs is a strategic priority for HEC Paris. For Alexis John-Ahyee, Director of HEC Paris' West and Central Africa office: "Thanks to our efforts, in our modular Executive MBA which has just been ranked number 1 worldwide by the Financial Times, 15% of our participants come from Sub-Saharan Africa, and up to 30% in the Executive Masters.”

Certified training courses for professionals and managers have also been set up in Abidjan, such as the SBUM programme (Strategic Business Unit Management ), the last promotion of which began in mid-January, with 23 participants.

The HEC Paris West and Central Africa Office also contributes to a pan-African program by HEC Paris. Lead Campus, Sustainable Leadership focuses on responsible leadership and was rolled out in Morocco, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, South Africa and Paris.

More and more tailor-made training courses are also being created for companies in sub-Saharan Africa.


Ivorian youth at the heart of the system

For Francois Collin, “training at the HEC Paris Grande Ecole is often perceived as being inaccessible. However, we think that it is very important that Ivorians have their place at the Grande Ecole alongside the best talents in the world. By returning to Côte d'Ivoire, they will then contribute to the economic and social development of the country, to its internationalization and to job creation".

Thus, HEC Paris launched, with the INP-HB, (the Institut National Polytechnique Félix Houphouët Boigny) the PACT Afrique program (Programme d'Accompagnement des Talents) to develop the knowledge and skills required for the entrance exam to the HEC Paris Grande Ecole program. With the support of the HEC Paris Office based in Abidjan, the courses are currently being followed by a class of 16 Ivorian students from INP-HB, pre-selected for the quality of their academic results, are as follows: English courses, preparation sessions for the TAGE MAGE test, preparation for interviews, etc.

"This scheme is attracting strong support from our graduates from France and Africa, who are ready to commit to supporting young Africans. It is partly financed thanks to the 5-year donation of an HEC Paris graduate to the HEC Foundation, Mr. Bertrand Schwab, from the class of 1987." says François Collin.

Another decisive element is the support of the Ivorian government, which finances scholarships for INP-HB students admitted to the dual degree program with HEC Paris.