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ESSEC, Capgemini Invent, BNP Paribas, Citepa and CY Cergy Paris Université launch the Talents of Ecological Transition Chair

16-12-2021
ESSEC, Capgemini Invent,  BNP Paribas, Citepa and CY Cergy Paris Université launch the Talents of Ecological Transition Chair

A year and a half after the announcement of Together, ESSEC’s ecological and social transition initiative, the School is launching the Talents of Ecological Transition Chair, which is both an educational and research Chair. Bernard Leca, an ESSEC professor and researcher, will serve as the Chair’s Academic Director; Alexis de La Tour du Pin as its Executive Director. The Chair was founded in partnership with Capgemini Invent, BNP Paribas, Citepa, and CY Cergy Paris University. The “Campus de la Transition and the Bilan Carbone” association will also support the Chair through an educational partnership.

Ecological transition, which until now has remained the preserve of engineers, researchers and communicators, needs input from new profiles and new skills: leaders; facilitators; creative minds; managers; storytellers; disruptors. By selecting the most dynamic students with complementary skills from the various ESSEC programs, the Chair aspires to train a versatile pool of talents who are highly employable precisely because they will have been fully prepared to have a significant impact on any type of organization, be it major international companies, charities, public entities, SMEs, start-ups or scaleups. The focus for the first class of 28 students will be the issues of climate change, biodiversity and ecological justice, as well as the impacts of these phenomena on stakeholders and ecosystems.

Alexis De La Tour du Pin described the Chair’s approach this way: “from an educational point of view, we are developing a holistic approach which relies on a combination of expert speakers, official training in carbon footprint assessment, coaching, field visits and company assignments.” This approach is designed to fulfil three educational objectives:

  1. To prepare our students to face up to complexity by equipping them with the necessary knowledge and know-how to take the full measure of the complexity of the issues at stake: impact measurement tools, etc.; human sciences (sociology, economics, psychology, geopolitics); and management sciences (marketing, finance, organizational theory, etc.)
  2. To develop a systemic vision that will foster the emergence and implementation of the solutions of tomorrow
  3. To inspire students to become the future talents of ecological transition by nourishing their ecological creativity, the strength of their commitment and the value of communityship.

The Talents of Ecological Transition Chair also intends to play a key role in academic research. Bernard Leca explained: “We will focus on ecological transition processes within businesses as well as among the various stakeholders in society, in order to identify how the various players in the economic, public and civil spheres can influence one other in a process of accelerating the transition.”

Two main themes will underpin the initial research focus of the Chair:

  1. Making “transition” a research topic in its own right: by differentiating ecological transition from corporate social responsibility (CSR), the Chair has set itself the objective of examining the notion of transition and of exploring its consequences in organizational theory as well as in management control and other areas of management.
  2. Studying how solutions can be scaled up: the challenge here is to examine how initiatives implemented within organizations of a particular size can be transposed to other types of organizations of a different type and size. The aim is to build up a repertoire of good practices and innovative experiences that can help accelerate or deepen the ecological transition of organizations.

The Chair also has the support of an entire network of patrons, scientific and academic partners with very different profiles on the subject of ecological transition. Alexis De La Tour du Pin underlined how “This versatility is not just an added bonus. We believe it is essential to expose our students to different philosophies and experiences, which will help them expand their knowledge, develop their critical thinking and enable them to tackle complexity.”

We invite you to view the launch video of the Talents for Ecological Transition Chair at the REcyclerie, where the partners share their expectations and ambitions for this Chair.

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