News & Highlights

  • November 2022
  • Deep Purpose Podcast

Deep Purpose: A Conversation with Unilever CEO Alan Jope

In this series of podcasts, Professor Ranjay Gulati has captivating conversations with top global CEOs, describing how the pursuit of purpose guides them to achieve performance gains, social benefits, and personal bests. Each episode explores how a revolutionary “Deep Purpose” approach to business can deliver game-changing results for companies and society alike. In this feature, Professor Gulati sits down with Alan Jope of Unilever to talk about the company’s historical commitment to doing good. This approach has not been without controversy. But Jope says it is both the right and smart thing to do.
  • November 2022
  • Cold Call Podcast

Marie Curie: A Case Study in Breaking Barriers

In this podcast, Professor Robert Simons discusses how Marie Curie rose to scientific fame despite poverty and gender barriers in his case, “Marie Curie: Changing the World.” Marie Curie, born Maria Sklodowska from a poor family in Poland, rose to the pinnacle of scientific fame in the early years of the twentieth century, winning the Nobel Prize twice in the fields of physics and chemistry. At the time women were simply not accepted in scientific fields so Curie had to overcome enormous obstacles in order to earn a doctorate at the Sorbonne and perform her pathbreaking research on radioactive materials. How did she plan her time and navigate her life choices to leave a lasting impact on the world?
  • October 2022
  • Event

HBS European Alumni Summit: “Re.Invent Leadership for a sustainable future”

The HBS Club of France, in collaboration with the ERC, hosted an insightful two-day alumni summit in Paris, France. The program featured a dynamic mix of inspiring CEOs, entrepreneurs, thinkers, and influencers from all over Europe, including Solvay CEO Ilham Kadri, who was introduced to the audience by ERC Executive Director Vincent Dessain. Professor Brian Trelstad and Professor Gunnar Trumbull also flew in from the U.S. to take the stage. It was a unique opportunity for our alumni to come together, build connections, and share their thoughts on how to reinvent their leadership approaches for a sustainable future.

New Research on the Region

  • October 2022
  • Case

Single.Earth

By: Rembrand Koning and Emer Moloney

Estonian greentech company Single.Earth is launching a nature-backed token that is linked to and funds the protection of a specific plot fo land. The first landowners had been onboarded to the company's Digital Twin, a virtual representation of the planet's natural resources. Now the founders had to innovate on the demand side of the market, which had been shaken by the May 2022 web3 crash. They needed to generate interest in individuals, companies and institutions to buy and use the tokens in order to get their dream of a nature-based economy up and running.

  • October 2022
  • Teaching Material

Single Earth: Science White Paper Supplement

By: Rembrand Koning and Emer Moloney

Science White Paper prepared by Single.Earth to give an overview of the models and solutions it has developed.

  • October 2022
  • Case

Driving Decarbonization at BMW

The case describes BMW’s electrification and decarbonization strategy, and how the company measured carbon emissions throughout the life cycle of its vehicles and used tools like carbon abatement cost curves to evaluate decarbonization opportunities. In mid-2022, automakers, consumers, regulators, and investors were focusing on the transition from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to electric vehicles (EV). While this would reduce tail-pipe emissions, the production of EVs—and especially their batteries—increased emissions in the supply chain. Under CEO Oliver Zipse, BMW was focusing on life cycle emissions and was pursuing a flexible powertrain strategy by offering vehicles with several powertrain options: gasoline and diesel-fueled ICE, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), and battery electric vehicles (BEV). Meanwhile, competing automakers were announcing deadlines by which they would stop selling ICE vehicles, buoyed by investment analysts and favorable press. BMW’s approach was receiving a frostier reception in the stock market. Facing these pressures, how should BMW communicate and convince its stakeholders that its strategy was sustainable for both the environment and BMW’s financial performance?

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Paris Staff

Vincent Dessain
Executive Director
Daniela Beyersdorfer
Senior Associate Director, Research and Administration
Emilie Billaud
Assistant Director
Elena Corsi
Assistant Director
Tonia Labruyere
Senior Researcher
Emer Moloney
Senior Researcher
Carlota Moniz
Research Assistant
Jan Pianca
Associate Director, Educational Programs
Patricia Rosas
Staff Assistant
Oksana Sichi
Assistant Director, Administration