IMD wins top three prizes in HEC Montreal CSR case writing competition - IMD Business School
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IMD wins top three prizes in HEC Montreal CSR case writing competition

IMD studies take the top three spots in a case writing competition focused on corporate social responsibility, highlighting the institute’s prominence in the field of sustainability.
March 2022

IMD is pleased to announce that three IMD faculty-authored cases have been awarded top prizes in the HEC Montreal CSR Challenge.

The competition, which is focused on the core tenets of corporate social responsibility, pits sustainability case authors against one another based on more than eight stringent eligibility criteria.

The prizes were awarded to IMD Professors Benoît Leleux and Frédéric Dalsace for their outstanding work. They are the latest awards earned by IMD faculty this year for case studies, underscoring the institute’s global reputation for excellence in case writing.

Previously, nine faculty members and two former IMD experts were named by The Case Center (TCC) in its 2021 bestselling and classic cases lists, three further cases were recognized in the John Molson MBA International Case Writing Competition, and last month, two professors won prizes in the Case Centre Awards and Competitions 2022.

Last year, Professor Leleux’s case Impaakt: Crowdsourcing Better ESG Ratings was runner-up in the competition.

This year’s winning IMD faculty-authored cases are:

Awarded first place was Lionheart Farms (Philippines) and the Tree of Life by Benoît Leleux, Anna Ziolkovska, Jose Mora, Said Chekri and Thibaud Veyrac. The case documents the genesis and development of Lionheart Farms in Palawan in the Philippines, the first large-scale, vertically integrated hybrid coconut plantation to produce and market organic coconut syrup and coconut flower water. Lionheart contributes to resolving the crisis in the coconut industry by developing a new business model based on scale, the best agricultural practices and inclusion of local communities, and which puts sustainability at the core of its activities, from farming to marketing.

Awarded second prize was Schneider Electric: Becoming the World Leader in Sustainability by Frédéric Dalsace. The case examines how Schneider Electric progressively integrated sustainability into the core of its strategy to be named the world’s “most sustainable corporation” in 2021 by media and research company Corporate Knights, out of more than 8,000 multinational corporations. It examines the key ingredients for Schneider Electric’s success and documents the “business case of sustainability”. What could possibly be the firm’s next steps?

Third was Values-based Entrepreneurship: Opaline’s Bubbles by Benoît Leleux and Marc Chauvet. Back in 2010, Sofie de Meyer, a former investment banking lawyer, set out to build a responsible and impactful company aligned with her own aspirations – not just a lifestyle venture, but one that would capitalize on her deeply rooted values, shared with many in her valley in Orsières (Valais). Opaline was her experiment to prove to the world that a different type of capitalism was possible, one that put human and environmental aspects at the center of a business revolution. Just as they were reaching breakeven, COVID-19 hit, forcing the firm to consider the impact of the pandemic on its business model. Would the strong ecosystem of partners really be the key to survival?

All three cases will be available at The Case Centre.