Research organisation - ICN Business School

Research organisation


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Research activity

Research at ICN is rooted in the ARTEM philosophy of transdisciplinarity. Research is imbued of this idea that frontiers have become territories to explore. Being part of ICN since 1999, a time when research was still in its infancy at the school, ARTEM has shaped faculty recruitment policies namely in what concerns research attitudes and approach. Although culture cannot be directly managed, it can be nurtured and favoured by a consistent recruitment policy that permits the creation of a specific and innovative spirit.

By focusing on the ARTEM concept it is necessary to open the doors of management disciplines and of their associated theories in order to promote a cultural intelligence in the core research activity. Different scientific cultures and different nationalities based on the ICN mission, result into innovative research based on prospective and creative approaches for a sustainable and better governed world.

Intellectual contributions at the ICN Business School are shaped by a faculty commitment for the creation of more pragmatic and compassionate, self-reflexive and greener avenues. In this way, they can become more engaged scholars and reflexive practitioners within their work of theory builders. Paradigmatic theories deserve more critical attention from the scholarship. By following dissident and original thinkers or their approaches,  the ICN Business School’s faculty is engaged in the ‘deconstruction’ of these paradigmatic theories. The general purpose is to open and renew paradigms within a cross-cultural theorizing context.

The diversity of the ICN faculty, their connection with ARTEM spirit and method have given most of them a specific flavour for innovation, creativity and practice. Faculty members engage with local players to develop meaningful research, which attempts to solve real problems. This applied research often starts in the classroom – during workshops in which students from the three ARTEM Schools participate together with external organisations – and then evolves into research projects that eventually result in the presentation of concrete solutions, but also in research seminars and peer-reviewed papers,

The cultural intelligence from the ARTEM spirit to promote a deeper dialogue between disciplines has also to be shared with student and professional communities. The transfer of knowledge cannot be disconnected from the people in charge of it in an educational process. Specific research projects are led about mentoring, coaching and tutoring in order to develop knowledge and practices in the day to day life of ICN around its core activity: teaching. Research that is then transformed into pedagogical practices at ICN Business School is exemplified by several courses on “Serious Gaming”, the “Early Growth Accelerator Initiative” and research in entrepreneurship, or the “Creative Business Days” and research on pedagogical innovation.

Research management

Research management is shared between the Deputy Director for Research, the Scientific Committee and the Research Laboratories CEREFIGE (‘Centre Européen de Recherche en Economie Financière et Gestion des Entreprises’), , under supervision of the Dean for Faculty and Research. Given their specific areas of expertise, and in accordance with the ARTEM orientation of the School, some faculty members belong to three other University of Lorraine laboratories: the BETA (‘Bureau d’Economie Théorique et Appliquée) and the LORIA (Laboratoire Lorrain de Recherche en Informatique et ses Applications) and LGIPM (‘Laboratoire de Génie Industriel, de Production et de Maintenance‘).

The main instances of research management are:

Deputy Director for Research

The coordination between ICN’s faculty and the research laboratories are led by the Deputy Director for Research. This person is responsible for promoting research aligned with each laboratory’s thematic teams and related topics, as well as for setting the yearly publication targets in conjunction with the Dean for Faculty and Research, as well as faculty concerned. This coordinator may also suggest new projects and research events and organizes regular internal seminars for faculty to discuss the progress being made on their research.

Scientific committee

The supervision and quality assurance of ICN research is carried out by the school’s scientific committee. Members are the Dean for Faculty and Research (Chair), the Deputy Director for Research, the Director of the CEREFIGE, the research engineer/ statistician, the Head of documentation and library services, and the Head of research support services. The committee meets every two months to discuss and determine:

  • the school’s research strategy, including proposals for the research budget,
  • the allocation of faculty research time, especially for HDR and doctoral routes,
  •  the entitlement of faculty to international study leave,
  • the coordination of research-related events, such as conferences and workshops, and
  • the evaluation of scientific production, i.e. the award of research bonuses.

CEREFIGE Research Laboratory

ICN research activity is coordinated in close cooperation with the CEREFIGE, the Grand Est region’s research laboratory for management, of which ICN Business School is a founding member. The CEREFIGE, has since 2007 brought together researchers in management from the University of Nancy 2, the Université Paul Verlaine, Metz (which both merged into the University of Lorraine in 2012) and the ICN Business School. Joining forces with the CEREFIGE laboratory has brought considerable advantages to ICN, by way of:

  • networking, to find partners for research projects,
  •   co-organisation of conferences,
  •  common invitations to visiting faculty,
  •  financial support for conference participation and translation of publications, and
  • assessment and assurance of research quality, via the CEREFIGE working paper process.

Research leading to a CEREFIGE working paper has to go through a review process within the laboratory. This assures a minimum level of quality for all publications from the laboratory. By this means, ICN faculty research is assessed internally, prior to undergoing the review process of the targeted journals.

ICN Case Collection

Herewith cases produced by ICN faculty do not only obtain the same style of format and teaching material, but undergo a peer-review process within the pedagogical axe (CDEC) explained below. This collection is characterised by its openness, creativity and trans-disciplinary content, which are the trademarks of the school within the ARTEM alliance, to provide concrete and innovative solutions to any kind of management problems. The cases target all public following management training, either in first-degree programmes or in Executive Education for any kind of corporation, i.e. from international groups to local SMEs. Since 2016, the ICN Case Collection is deposited at the CCMP (Centrale de Cas et Médias Pédagogiques), the French case-study clearing house, which is the largest global editor of French-language case-studies. ICN Business School is one of the only eight French business schools to have a case collection at the CCMP. (See for details:

Open archive portal HAL

In a context favorable to open access, the ICN Business School started in 2016 an open archives portal on HAL for two main reasons:

  • the HAL platform, managed by the CNRS (‘Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique’)[1], has been chosen by several French research institutions, public or private, like universities and business schools, for deposing all intellectual contributions types.
  • HAL is a tool for direct scientific communication between researchers. HAL optimises the visibility of ICN research, its accessibility, speed of dissemination and impact of the deposited productions, both nationally and internationally through the interoperability of the platform with other open archives.

Currently, more than 600 references are accessible from the portal, corresponding to all the ICN research contributions published between 2012 and 2017.

ICN operates a bonus scheme as an incentive system for the ICN faculty to publish in peer-reviewed journals listed by the CNRS as this list is used in French Business School rankings. Potential teaching applications and links to corporate partners are also defined, to enforce that pedagogical and corporate contributions are well connected to the school’s research strategy.

[1]   The CNRS is the French national institution responsible for the quality of scientific research. Their list of peer-reviewed journals includes, in addition to the French publications, an outstanding number of international journals in the fields of business and management, as well as related topics, such as economics and sociology. See for details:

icn faculty intellectual contributions yearbooks

Each year, the Faculty and Research Department of the school publishes a yearbook allowing to share results of the research activity with the teaching and research world.

Partners Laboratories

Prefered partner laboratory:

The CEREFIGE (EA n°3942), the European Centre for Research in Financial Economics and Business Management, is a research laboratory in Management Science and Finance that belongs to the University of Lorraine.

The CEREFIGE laboratory has two sites, one in Nancy and the other in Metz. The CEREFIGE hosts mainly lecturers from the IAE, the ICN Business School Nancy the Faculty of Law, Economics and Management and the IUT, thus pooling many resources (computer room, databases, background documents, software), activities (research seminars, projects, research contracts …), and conferences (in economics and management science).

The ICN Business School is one of the founding members of the CEREFIGE laboratory and the majority of the ICN Business School faculty are members at this laboratory.

ICN Business School has also strong links with the following partner laboratories:

  • BETA – Office of Theoretical and Applied Economics
  • IRENEE – Institute of Research on Evolution of the Nation and the State
  • LGIPM (Laboratory of Industrial Engineering and Mechanical Production)
  • LORIA – Lorraine Research Laboratory in Computer Science and its Applications


Mise à jour le 15/06/2021