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Institut Polytechnique de Paris and Accenture form strategic partnership to address big challenges

By David Schwartz
Published: November 30th, 2020

Institut Polytechnique de Paris (IP Paris) and Accenture have entered a five-year strategic partnership that aims to leverage science and technology to address major societal, economic, and environmental challenges. A key aspect of the deal is the creation of an academic and research chair that will foster the development of innovative technologies in response to these challenges.

The partnership is being led by Jean-Marc Ollagnier, CEO of Accenture in Europe; Olivier Girard, CEO of Accenture in France and Benelux; IP Paris President Eric Labaye; and Jean-Paul Cottet, executive director of the École Polytechnique Foundation.

The academic and research chair will be known as the “Chair of Technology for Change,” The chair will promote industry transformation through innovative business models that can enhance environmental and social sustainability. With an initial term of five years, the Chair of Technology for Change will become integral in the research and education activities carried out at IP Paris. Plans for the program are address a broad range of issues such as inclusive innovation, energy transition, sustainable technology, the circular economy, sustainable business models, and responsible finance. A certificate will be offered based on students’ degree of commitment toward these critical issues.

Chaired by Thierry Rayna, professor of Innovation Management at École Polytechnique and Research Director at the Innovation Interdisciplinary Institute, the Chair of Technology for Change will build on the expertise of IP Paris’s 30 research labs and 950 faculty members. It will act as a platform for rapid responses to the societal and environmental issues outlined in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations Agenda 2030.

“Addressing the current global societal, economic, and environmental challenges requires new innovation approaches,” Labaye commented. “This new long-term partnership between IP Paris and Accenture, bringing together science, technology and industry expertise, is a major step in our aspiration to train responsible leaders and develop leading-edge interdisciplinary research on the world’s most pressing issues.”

Ollagneir added that “the combination of Accenture’s technology expertise and deep industry knowledge with the academic excellence of IP Paris will provide the scientific world with a unique opportunity to promote the latest research-based innovation more widely and rapidly and offer businesses easier access to the latest academic breakthroughs. Harnessing the power of technology and human knowledge and inventiveness is essential for addressing the challenges of today and tomorrow, whether demographic, economic, ecological, or societal. The only way for companies to emerge stronger and build a sustainable world is to embrace change and ensure that it benefits all.”

Girard noted that the partnership “is consistent with Accenture’s commitment to provide cutting-edge expertise and support the development of tomorrow’s talent. Convergence of industry and science is key to developing solutions to address the economic and societal challenges that lie ahead and building a future that benefits all.”

A key goal is for the chair to be a global leader, and as part of that effort the Chair of Technology for Change will organize annual events — such as a Global Summit on Technology for Change, as well as international technology challenges and hackathons — bringing together representatives of the general public, academics, businesses, and policy-makers to focus on these issues. The chair will also publish an annual report on the latest research surrounding these issues in order to assist decision and policy-makers.

Source: Business Wire

Posted under: University-Industry Engagement Week

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