Social responsibility

Strategy and governance

Social responsibility of the school

The mission of ICN Business School is to train responsible managers, that is, executives who are respectful of persons as human beings and respectful of the natural environment, as part of their concern to improve performance and economic profitability. ICN includes in its teaching programs humanist values such as self-respect, respect for others and respect for the environment. These give students references which are appropriate for making enlightened decisions. With this in mind ICN has developed a Strategic Plan for Sustainable Development (SD) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) which gives due consideration for School staff, students, suppliers and the many other School stakeholders (companies, NGO’s, Local and Regional Councils, etc.).

SD & CSR pilot committee

ICN designed this plan from an initial analysis of the current situation regarding the different facets of Sustainable Development and then defined the major issues resulting from this analysis. There then followed a CSR action plan which led to the creation of specific projects falling into three categories: training, research and socially responsible commitments. The last phase of the strategy was to involve, on a long term basis, the School’s stakeholders, not forgetting their own concerns and suggestions.

The Pilot Committee has also drawn up a list of Responsible Commitments which will be put into effect in the School in order to reinforce the different facets of the SD/CSR strategic plan:
• Promote Equal Opportunities and Diversity;
• Develop and put into practice SD and CSR concepts;
• Give support to the student Associations’ projects relating to SD and CSR and encourage colleagues to become involved in community and responsible projects;
• Involve companies in the training of tomorrow’s responsible managers that the students will become, and in developing responsible business relationships with suppliers;
• Contribute to discussions concerning and the communication of responsible knowledge, responsible know-how and responsible behavior, together with the School’s different stakeholders, locally, nationally and internationally.

One further activity of the Pilot Committee is to make Responsible Commitments a reality by publishing a list of SD performance indicators to ensure that ICN Business School is more effective and efficient in managing its SD & CSR policy (cf annexe SD/CSR indicators).

Education and research

Education and training

Teaching, training and research are key factors of success for an institution of higher education. The final goal is to train managers to be responsible, and to achieve this, ICN Business School delivers educational programs which are appropriate for the world of business.

In line with the strategy of the ICN itself, which supports the Grenelle Laws, the European directive of November 2014 and the recommendations of the CSR platform, a number of ICN internal bodies have taken advantage of this in order to consider ways in which they might incorporate SD/CSR into their teaching modules in an effective way.

A good example of this was the Faculty Day of November 2014 which took SD/CSR as its key theme. Faculty Day is the yearly meeting of teaching and research Faculty at ICN where all staff participate in discussion groups in the form of workshops. The Faculty Day held in November 2014 began with a lecture to raise awareness of the issues involved, and this was followed by a workshop where each Head of Academic and Professional Department (DAP) gave an account of the ways in which the issues of SD/CSR were incorporated into the Department’s teaching modules. Following this, decisions were taken as to ways in which the notions of SD/CSR might be integrated more widely in the School’s courses.

The aim of this is to improve managerial practice by developing student behavior before they become managers and hence create the future by incorporating the management of concepts of SD/CSR into ICN courses.

The Academic Committee of March 2015 put the decisions taken during the Faculty Day into a coherent structure by:
• Appointing an SD/CSR reference person in each DAP;
• Identifying essential issues for inclusion in the academic 2015-2016 program;
• Informing all Heads of DAP and Course Directors that, each year, one meeting of the Academic Committee and one meeting of the Scientific Committee will discuss issues of SD/CSR.

Today ICN adheres to a policy of permanent integration of SD and CSR issues in courses and modules to give students a training and education of quality and one which reflects what is currently at stake in our society.


For a number of years several professiorial chairs have been contributing to SD and CSR initiatives at ICN Business School:
• Chair in Corporate Social Responsibility and Innovation, currently held by Professor David Wasieleski and coordinated by permanent Faculty member Dr. Günter Schumacher. The Chair is jointly financed by ICN Business School and the Lorraine Regional Council. It was established in order to develop joint research projects which combine ethics in business and CSR issues, and which examine innovation and change in organizations.
• Chair International Research Chair in Art & Sustainable Enterprise, currently held by Professor Paul Shrivastava and coordinated by permanent Faculty member Dr. Silvester Ivanaj. It is jointly financed by ICN Business School and the Lorraine Regional Council. It promotes research into the intellectual links between art and sustainable development.

Teaching/Research Faculty are engaged in scientific productions in which CSR issues are often included. It is also present in symposia, scientific research events, lectures and thesis defenses, and in refereed conferences for communications and peer-reviewed journals published each year.

Lastly, the university libraries and ICN Business School have been enriched of books and e-books related to CSR and SD. In this context, ICN has acquired the digital library “Sustainable Organization Library 2014”.

Environmental management

Developing activities to protect the environment

• Policies to increase the awareness of colleagues and students regarding environmental protection (e.g. programming all computers to print only in black and white and back-to-back) have been adopted by the Head of Technical Services at ICN, together with the installation of movementsensitive electric taps. These have resulted in a substantial reduction in the consumption of paper and water.

• ICN Business School has been particularly keen, over a number of years, to order its supplies from responsible suppliers. This is the case for the actual materials utilized and their country of origin and the conditions in which they were produced. As an example, printing of presentational documents is carried out by a local Lorraine company which is ‘Imprim’Vert’ accredited. Similarly certain communication items are now supplied by a local company. This again prioritizes ethical and responsible values.

• The School is attentive to the careful recycling of used products and materials after organized meetings such as conferences and seminars. It also practises a policy of re-utilizing materials when possible.

• Hybrid vehicles and car-sharing schemes are now in place and available for Faculty and students at the School.

• Bicycle couriers now carry post and parcels between the Schools’ different Nancy sites.

• The ICN’s Research and Development Annual is now published on-line each year. It is only printed on paper when absolutely necessary, for audit purposes, for example.

• The SD/CSR Pilot Committee has set itself the target of obtaining all purchases for the School’s different Directorates from ethical and socially responsible sources.

• The construction of the ICN’s new ARTEM premises has given rise to discussions regarding environmental management, concerning both the buildings themselves and transport access.

Student Associations participate in environmental protection

The student Association Green Touch, in partnership with other Associations, is managing a number of activities to increase awareness of sustainable development: installation of waste-sorting points, facilitating re-cycling operations on all School sites; posting of adhesive stickers next to each electric switch and taps on the campus to remind users to save energy and water; sustainable development awareness campaigns with pupils in secondary and high schools which are ICN partners in the Pathways to Success initiative; bio- and fair-trade lunches and breakfasts are held on a number of occasions throughout the year; eco-cups (re-usable drinking beakers) are used for lunches and breakfasts…

Social and human policies

With the ICN staff

• A recruitment policy which respects an anti-discrimination commitment. ICN is also committed to working with service providers who also apply this rule.

• A code of behavior for students, enhanced working terms and conditions for the employees and a good practice guide for internet and media users have all been put in place to make life in the ICN as pleasant as possible.

• The end of 2014 marked the beginning of discussions on a new method of calculating work time for managers who need a certain amount of flexibility in the exercise of their duties. Calculations will be made on the basis of days presence, not hours.

• Male-female balance on the governing bodies of the School: a strategy which has led to an increase in the number of women on the Board of Governors, on the Strategic Orientation Committee and on the School’s Executive Committee, COMEX, (33% in 2013).

• An in-service training program which continues to rise: 1,559 hours as at 30/12/2011 and 2,475 hours on 30/12/2014. More and more training in all levels of safety and security is organized in the School.

• The purchase of computer and IT materials, together with improvements in the user-comfort of work-stations has led to an improvement in employees’ working conditions.

• In response to the individual need for help for employees experiencing psycho-sociological problems, a hotline was set up for staff in October 2012.

• A number of agreements have been signed since 2012 on subjects as varied as: risk insurance (2012), complementary health insurance (2013), older staff (2009, and again in 2014), gender equality at work (2012), and electronic voting (2013). Each year an agreement is signed to provide for salary increases or an increase in purchasing power for all staff.

With the ICN partners

• Companieros: In 2014, a ‘Diversity Week’ was organized. Many companies and associations came together to discuss, in lectures, round table discussions and individual experiences, the important challenges of diversity within the firm. In 2013, labelling of Handimanagers with Companieros.

• Passeport Avenir: ICN has signed an agreement with this Association to help young women and men from less well-off families to adjust to the challenges of student and professional life. The student chosen are allocated a sponsor from one of the partner firms in the agreement, who accompanies them throughout their education at ICN.

• EST’elles Executive: This association was co-created by professors, Executive MBA students and members of the wider business community in the aim of encouraging women to engage in professional networking and in doing so develop on a professional and personal level. Since 2008 it has become a leading women’s network in Eastern France and Luxembourg offering a full calendar of events which take place in Nancy, Metz, Strasbourg, Epinal and Luxembourg. ICN female students are encouraged to attend events organized by the network and participate in the mentoring intergénération’elles program. Each year in June EST’elles Executive organizes, with the support of other corporate women’s networks in the Grand Est, the prestigious annual meeting “Le Manager de demain est une femme! Etes-vous pret(e)s?”.

• Embarquez-les: With the theater company ‘Oh, my Coach !’, ICN put on a show in May 2014, which brought home to students and other stakeholders the importance of the issues faced by handicapped persons. The show illustrated the different themes associated with the prejudice that handicapped people have to bear, the image that society at large has of them, and how the handicapped worker can be encouraged into the workplace and, reciprocally, how the work station adapted to their needs.

• ICN Foundation: Since 2011, ICN has financed the tuition fees of 7 first year students on the ICN Grande Ecole Degree via the ICN Foundation. Selection is made on the basis of the social circumstances of the students and their motivation. The selected students can then follow the apprenticeship scheme in years 2 and 3 which means that the whole of their quality education at ICN is provided at a considerably reduced cost to themselves.

• ICN Social Committee: Each year, students in temporary financial difficulty can apply to this Committee for help. If their application is accepted they receive financial assistance for part of their tuition fees.

• Grants: Grants to cover all tuition fees were made available for the first time in 2014. These were awarded on the basis of social criteria to 6 first year students on the ICN Grande Ecole Degree and the ICN Bachelor Degree. They represent a total award of some 49,000 euros.

With the ICN student associations

• BurkinH20 helps in the struggle to combat one of the world’s problems: the need for water. Thanks to the ARTEM Alliance, this ICN Association also includes students from Mines Nancy and the Ecole nationale supérieure d’art et de design de Nancy. The Association’s project supports in particular: the construction of water wells and market gardens in Burkina Faso villages, the promotion of fair trade, and an awareness campaign for French people of the problem of water supplies.

• Latina is an Association which helps poor children in Peru. It collects in France and distributes in Peru teaching materials, health and hygiene materials, and toys. Its activities target mainly the shantytowns and poor districts which do not have the advantages which such articles bring.

• GreenTouch has as its mission to raise awareness of the problems and challenges of sustainable development to a range of different publics: ICN students, primary school children and academic Faculty.

• The Association ARTEM Réussite is part of the national network ‘Pathways to Success’ (Cordées de la Réussite). Its aim is to encourage middle school and high school pupils in difficult urban districts to persevere and succeed in their personal, educational and professional projects.Consequently the students organize throughout the year events in partner institutions.

• On the ICN’s Nürnberg Campus student projects have been presented to illustrate the School’s mission and values: openmindedness, commitment, team spirit and tolerance. Examples include: «Travelling Around The World», a student project which consists in meeting children from modest family backgrounds and making them aware of the ICN’s values by exploring, in games, different continents and coutries of the world. «Healthy Break», a student project consisting in meeting children with learning and perhaps health difficulties from poorer backgrounds. The aim is to introduce them to the importance of healthy eating by getting them to participate in cooking dishes, often from other cultures.

Regional involvement and partnerships

With companies

ICN has solid and long-established relationships with many partners with whom it shares many SD/CSR events. It regularly signs agreements with enterprises and local government authorities in order to reinforce collaborative activities with these organizations, in particular the presence and participation of companies in the School’s daily operations and the placement of students on internships and first jobs in companies.

Some examples:
• With its partner Caisse d’Epargne Lorraine Champagne-Ardenne, it organized a conference on: ‘Finance and Socially Responsible Investment – a Closer Look at Tomorrow’s Challenges’.
• The Banque Populaire Lorraine Champagne has been a regular contributor to the Master Grande Ecole Degree year 3 Seminar, usually held outside France, where managers have led student workshops on the theme of ‘Career Management’, focusing on the employment of handicapped persons.
• Manpower has participated in many events such as ‘Job Forums’, and the Development Director teaches directly on ICN course modules. This precious partnership has recently been strengthened by the signing of a new agreement.
• ICN Business School was a partner in the ‘Responsible Innovation in Lorraine’ initiative, set up by the Groupe La Poste in partnership with a number of other economic and political players in the region. As part of this collaborative effort a number of other events have taken place.The partnership with the Groupe La Poste also led to the organization, as part of the ‘Creative Business Days’, of a day with the Lorraine Responsible Innovation Club (Club Innovation Responsable en Lorraine).
• Acticall, yet another ICN partner, is a regular participant in the work of the Student Association ‘Work’Coeur Diversity’, specifically in the days devoted to assessing and awarding the label ‘Handimanager’.
• PERTUY Construction, a member of the ARTEM Enterprise Club, has signed an agreement with Artem Réussite, the Association which overlooks the ‘Pathways to Success’ initiative, in order to give financial support to a project whereby pupils from the member schools can meet contact people in the companies.

With the ICN Foundation

ICN Business School has 5 other major collaborative partnerships with companies in the ICN Foundation. These all include financial support for SD/CSR initiatives.
The founding members – la Caisse d’Epargne Grand Est Europe, CIC Est, Expertis CFE, Factum Group et Savencia (Bongrain-Gérard) , finance, each year, a part of ICN students through tuition scholarships.

With national and international associations

The School has taken the decision to support both morally and financially several of the Les Restaurants du Coeur Association’s activities, particularly with help in managing a budget, help in job recruiting, with holiday entitlements and arrangements, and with educational support. Since 2014 ICN has also offered its help in the general administration of the Restaurants du Coeur. It helps to collect funds in large stores, both in the region and nationally, and helps with wrapping presents during the festive season.

Enactus. This partnership with Enactus focuses on the entrepreneurial initiatives of students. The aim is to permanently improve economic, social and environmental aspects of the lives of those who are helped. As such Enactus has helped to: enhance the commitment of students to the company via entrepreneurial projects which meet Enactus criteria; develop students’ human and entrepreneurial qualities and skills via the management of a reallife team project; advise students in their job search by giving them guidance with their career plans and providing opportunities for internships, apprenticeships and first jobs; make contributions to resolving the challenges of contemporary society and improving the lives of needy people, through a combination of higher education know-how, the experience of companies, and the energy and enthusiasm of young students.

Mise à jour le 07/05/2019