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GEM: a catalyst for innovation

Grenoble Ecole de Management étaye son offre de services corporate
Published on
23 November 2018

Grenoble Ecole de Management (GEM) offers a rich environment in constant evolution. As the digital revolution and artificial intelligence grow in importance, the school opens the door to developing innovative models in collaboration with students and companies. Thanks to new initiatives, GEM continues to strengthen the ties between students, school and companies as we prepare for the challenges of tomorrow.

The early 21st century has been marked by many radical changes in terms of business models, job requirements, tools and many other aspects of society. Changes throughout society are being implemented at micro and macro levels thanks to the power of a digital transformation and artificial intelligence. As a result, higher education must renew its offer in order to meet the changing demands of companies. “It’s as if we were walking on the moon for the first time! GEM has been focused on technology and innovation management since its launch in 1989. And today, we’re all the more required to be pioneers,” highlights Agnès Brandi, head of sales and company relationships at GEM.

Strengthening the relationship between companies, school and students

“In 2018, the relationship between companies, school and students is all the more important at GEM,” underlines Agnès. This focus is all the more illustrated by the new immersive approach offered to first year students who joined the Grande Ecole Program in 2018. “Our ‘first-year challenge’ enabled us to provide the entire freshman class with access to the serious game Tech It! and thus create 150 creative ideas for social innovation. Several examples of the students’ work include: ADAM, a connected bracelet for seniors; Caréo, a smart refrigerator designed to balance your diet; or Easy Bin, a trash can that can automatically sort recyclable materials!”

The ‘first-year challenge’ underlined the ties between the school, its students and partner companies as six businesses took part in the process in order to provide students with food for thought to nourish their innovative proposals. GEM served to enable this interaction thanks to its design of the serious game Tech It!, as part of its participation in IRT Nanoelec and its collaboration with CEA Leti.

Expertise: cross fertilization to open new doors

With research teams focusing on a variety of areas such as health, well-being, sharing economies, energy, climate change, entrepreneurship, digital transformations or geopolitics, the school’s researchers and professors create the possibility for new knowledge to be shared with students and companies alike.

“The results of our varied research topics enable the school to offer students the opportunity to follow specialized classes or advanced master’s (in energy, entrepreneurship, digital transformation…) all the while providing important support for major changes in our social models,” adds Agnès.

Innovative research chairs for the world of tomorrow

In addition to training and recruiting talent, companies rely on higher education for innovative solutions to the challenges of tomorrow. In response, GEM continues to expand its research chairs with the addition of two new chairs in partnership with SMEs, major companies and public organizations.

The Energy for Society chair includes 15 French and international researchers who aim to study the evolutions of this sector which impact everything from business models to job requirements, services or customer relationships. "To successfully navigate the energy transition, we must overcome technological, societal and economic challenges. Through its research, this new chair will help companies and public organizations anticipate changes and design strategies that are in line with these evolutions," explains Agnès.d

Developing a new participative governance model

"The Territories in Transition chair will offer strong support at a local level by connecting public actors, citizens and companies of all sizes. The chair will investigate how to develop new opportunities and business models for the region thanks to emerging technology (urban data, carpooling platforms, etc.). The chair will be built on a model for participative governance," explains Agnès.

As companies seek to anticipate changes in their business model in order to partake in major societal challenges and the growth of collaborative engagement, this new chair offers a catalyst to design new societal models.

Immersive and experienced-based learning

GEM has also developed its position as a business lab for society. The concept enables companies, students and researchers to experiment together the solutions of tomorrow. "Our new campuses are designed in a completely new manner in order to support innovation and experimentation with new technology and immersive learning platforms," concludes Agnès.

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