A 9th edition for the “Comprendre et Changer le Monde seminar”


Since 2014, the “Comprendre & Changer le Monde” seminar raises awareness among new Pre-Master students at the ESSEC Business School’s Grande Ecole program about key social economic and environmental challenges that companies are facing today.

During two weeks of this rich and intense seminar, 424 new students will be sensitized toward a commitment to the development of a greater sustainable future for societies. On the program: seminars and workshops, group work, speakers, conferences, panels and hands-on learning activities such as conducting interviews, developing surveys, creating videos, ...

Each year, conferences, panels, and speakers cover topics related to the environment and socio-economic aspects, globalization, new technologies, geopolitics, climate change, etc.

The “Comprendre & Changer le Monde” seminar helps new ESSEC students to develop an academic and professional path that will encourage them to make a unique contribution to business and society. It also provides the tools to better understand the geopolitical, socio-economic and environmental context in which they will operate. This seminar is part of ESSEC’s commitments to training responsible leaders capable of positively influencing the way to answer the major challenges facing businesses, organizations and society.

Many thanks to the speakers for their participation in this 2023 edition of the “Comprendre & Changer le Monde” seminar:

Dr Moustapha KAMAL GUEYE: conference on “Green Jobs”

Dr Moustapha Kamal Gueye is Director of the Priority Action Programme on Just transitions towards environmentally sustainable economies and societies at the International Labour Organization (ILO), after holding the position as the Global Coordinator, Green Jobs Programme, at the ILO.

Benoît BERGERET & Julien MALAURENT: round table on AI and ESSEC Metalab

Benoît Bergeret is executive director of the Metalab, the multidisciplinary center of ESSEC which brings together professors and researchers from different backgrounds (economic and management sciences, human and social sciences, and statistical and engineering sciences) reflecting on the challenges and impact of the adoption of artificial intelligence and data analysis sciences and techniques.

Julien Malaurent is an ESSEC professor and academic director of the Metalab. Julien's research projects are based on qualitative approaches, and address issues related to the work practices of users embedded in multi-cultural context, digital ubiquity, digital transformation at both the organizational and societal levels.

Marlène DULAURANS, Jean-Christophe FEDHERBE & Jérôme BARLATIER: conference on cybersecurity

Marlène Dulaurans is a Lecturer in Information and Communication Sciences at the University of Bordeaux Montaigne, Member of the MICA Laboratory, “Communication, Organization, Society” team, Head of the Multimedia and Internet professions (MMI), IUT Bordeaux Montaigne, Director of the “CyberNeTic” university research program.

Jean-Christophe Fedherbe is Head of Bordeaux Ntech Investigators Group - Operational Section for the Fight against Cyber Threats - Part-time professor Bordeaux Montaigne University, MMI department - Co-director of the “CyberNeTic” university research program.

Jérôme Barlatier is Lieutenant Colonel, Chief of the Intelligence Division, Central Criminal Intelligence Service, General Directorate of the National Gendarmerie.

Sébastien KOPP: conference on “VEJA, reinventing sneakers”

In 2003, Sébastien Kopp and François-Ghislain Morillion have 25 years old, they have finished their economics studies and are carrying out a social audit in a factory in China. There, they discover the reality of globalization. At the same time, they worked with Tristan Lecomte, pioneer of fair trade, for a fairer and more sustainable economy. On their return to France, they decided to reinvent a flagship product of their generation: sneakers. In 2004, they founded VEJA with the main objective of creating sneakers differently by mixing social projects, economic justice and ecological materials. VEJA means look in Portuguese, an invitation to look beyond the sneakers, to question how they are made.

Chantal DARDELET: conference on “the social commitment”

Chantal Dardelet is head of the CEDI, the Equality Diversity & Inclusion Center of ESSEC Business School, which brings together ESSEC's many commitments and initiatives in favor of equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion. The CEDI produces social innovations that aim to contribute to build a more peaceful, more united society, but also more efficient because it is rich in all talents.
Some examples? the "cordées de la réussite" based on student tutoring or even the Fresque de la diversité. The CEDI also covers the implementation of ESSEC's Respect for Others policy as well as its so-called D&I transformation, to move from a diverse school to an inclusive school.
Chantal is also the executive director of Together, the ESSEC’s ecological and social transition approach, which deploys an ambitious policy of eco-campus, but also of transformation of teaching and research so that ecological and social issues are taken into account at the height of the challenges.
Since 2005, she leads the social openness group of the Conference of Grandes Écoles, which brings together a national network of 300 higher education establishments committed to equal opportunities and social openness issues. Finally, she co-leads the Groupe de travail who defined the transition roadmap for the Cergypontain territory.

Farid BADDACHE: conference on "Leadership & skills to change the world of finance and of the companies”

Farid Baddache leads consulting & advocacy activities within Ksapa, relying on improving environmental, social and ethical performance to innovate and improve business competitiveness.
International profile, expert in consulting and research in sustainable development, with more than 20 years of experience in consulting firms, companies (consumer goods, industries), NGOs, universities, development agencies & international organizations, he was for more than 10 years General Director of BSR (Business for Social Responsibility), global non-profit organization that works in consulting, research and collaborative programs on environmental and social topics bringing together a network of more than 250 large member companies.


Thierry Lardinoit is a professor at the ESSEC Marketing department. His areas of expertise focus on sports marketing and consumer behaviour. He has published books and articles in several academic journals, including Psychology & Marketing, Journal of Advertising Research or Recherche et Applications en Marketing. He was also a member of the scientific committee of the Revue de la Société française de management du sport, member of the editorial committee of the International Sport Marketing and Sponsorship Review and member of the Association française du marketing. He is the founder of the ESSEC Sports Marketing international Chair of which he was the Professor for more than 15 years as well as creator and pedagogical manager of the Mastère Sport, Management et Stratégie d’entreprise. He has also actively contributed to the creation and teaching of the Marketing module of the UEFA Diploma of Football Management and the UEFA Marketing Awards. He was also one of the founding members of the Trophées Sporsora of Marketing Sportif and of the INSEP’s Carrefours de la Performance. He is a doctor in kinesiology and physical education from the University of Louvain in Belgium and he is graduated in Management et Gestion of this same University. Thierry was previously a professional volleyball player. He is today responsible for ESSEC's integration of high-level athletes into all of the School's programs.

Xavier Bigard is a sports Doctor, researcher in exercise physiology and nutritionist, Medical Director of the UCI Aigle (Switzerland).
He has carried out much of his research on muscle plasticity and skeletal muscle responses to training and extreme environments. He was an associate research professor at Val-de-Grâce (Paris), as well as deputy director of the Armed Forces Biomedical Research Institute.
He was also president of the French Medicine Society for Sports Exercise (SFMES) and former scientific advisor to the Agence Française de Lutte contre le Dopage (AFLD).
Xavier Bigard has also been heavily involved in the promotion of physical activity for health and the fight against a sedentary lifestyle.
He led the inter-ministerial working group behind the regulatory texts prescribing physical activity in patients and he has led several groups to draft recommendations for the practice of sport, physical activity, and the fight against a sedentary lifestyle. He was more recently at the origin of the publication of a report by the National Academy of Medicine on the practice of sport and physical activity at work.

Gatien Letartre is the CEO & co-founder of TrainMe, of the Decathlon group, leader in sport, well-being and health prevention in companies in France.

Olivier Meneux leads the Youth and Social Engagement programs deployed by Paris 2024 as part of the impact and legacy strategy supported by the Organizing Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
He led the sports policies of the Department of Seine-Saint-Denis from 2008 to 2011 and before joining Paris 2024 he was also Ministerial Delegate to the Olympic and Paralympic Games with Jean Castex as part of the prefiguration of the Cultural Olympiad and the legacy of the Games. Expert profile in the conception of complex projects in the artistic, cultural, educational, social and sporting fields, he is also the founder of three major projects established in territories and with national influence. L'Acap - Image Regional Center (Hauts de Frances), Ciclic - Audiovisual cinema agency books and reading (Centre Val de Loire) and Ateliers Médicis, centre of creation and émergences (Clichy-sous-Bois, Ile-de-France). For each of these organizations which he assured the conception and the executive direction, the research, the creation, the transmission and the close relationship with the inhabitants and the territory where it is located constitute the cornerstone of the project and its deployment. He regularly teach these questions to differents university and he works with foundations, institutions and communities in advising and leading social commitment projects.

More information in the seminar website
Twitter : ESSEC_CCM
YouTube video presenting the seminar by Prof. Stefan Gröschl