ESCP Europe

Highlighting best practice as a representative in The Parliamentary Review

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from ESCP Europe is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

London Campus Dean Simon
Mercado (right) pictured
with Executive President,
Frank Bournois (left) and UK
Chairman, Lord Gold (centre)
ESCP Europe London
Originally established in 1819, ESCP Europe is widely
considered to be the world’s oldest business school, and
its founder, Jean-Baptiste Say, is said to have coined the
word “entrepreneur”. Chaired by Philippe Houzé, Président du
Directoire du groupe Galeries Lafayette, it has campuses in Paris,
Berlin, London, Madrid, Turin and Warsaw. The London School and
Campus, which is based in West Hampstead, has emerged as the
group’s largest business unit outside of France. Simon Mercado,
Dean of the London School and Campus, tells
The Parliamentary
about the current market trends affecting business
schools and their commitment to remain a bridge between the
UK and Europe.
We are one school, but to have an impact on a European level, we must have
a scale and impact in each strategic location. Our job and function in London
is to translate an overarching strategy focused on high-quality education and
international leadership development into effective and locally attuned action. In
the current academic year, we have over 1,000 degree students across 16 degree
programmes and have been focusing intently on our teaching and academic
standards, which have been recognised by the UK’s Quality Assurance Agency.
This has certainly contributed to our THE
“UK Business School of the Year Award”
and a number of programme-ranking successes. In order to sustain this forward
momentum, we are working towards achieving independent degree-awarding
»Executive President and Dean:
Prof. Frank Bournois
»Dean of the London Campus:
Prof. Dr Simon Mercado
»Established in Paris in 1819
»Operating in the UK since 1973
»Based in London, Paris, Berlin,
Madrid, Turin and Warsaw
»Services: Business education
»No. of students: 5,000
(worldwide); 1,500 (UK)
ESCP Europe
Highlighting best practice
To support our student experience,
we have activated 25 student societies
on campus and are launching a new
series of programmes, tracks and
specialisations. In terms of alumni
relations and fundraising, 2018 was
a huge year, and we managed to
raise over £250,000 through both
UK-based donors and London-based
events. Beyond this, we are expanding
our Executive Education work, which
is already contributing a tenth of our
total annual turnover of £10 million
The series of specialisations, or areas
of excellence, we are strengthening
include creativity and innovation,
marketing, finance, entrepreneurship,
digital strategy and transformation.
This is complemented by the
development of strong specialist
expertise in the automotive sector,
creative industries, professional
services and energy. These areas are
reflected in our projects, research and
Five key priorities for business
Moving forward, I have identified five
key priorities to ensure we remain at
the forefront of the business school
community. These are reflected in
our group strategy and in what we
are trying to do here in the UK. The
first of these is adapting to the digital
revolution, which is reforming the
entire business landscape. Those that
do not develop their digital capability
will fall behind or fail. We are at the
forefront of European schools through
our focus on digital leadership and
frontier technologies. This is based on
our research into the future of work
and industry and our new curricula
and pedagogy. Our new specialised
degrees in digital transformation, data
science and automation management
all focus on the key domains of future
business strategy. These pioneering
courses are creating leaders for a
digital age.
Tomorrow’s leaders will be both
entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs. The
best international business schools
are promoting a culture of innovation
and entrepreneurial action to ensure
graduates are prepared for the
“gig economy”. Our annual Jean-
Baptiste Say Entrepreneur Festival
has become an important vehicle for
start-ups and the creation of new
ventures. We have also developed
e-specialisations on some of our
biggest degreeprogrammes.
Another key trend is the development
of an open model of management
science in which management is placed
in its full socio-political context. Our
programmes are interdisciplinary and
are set within the humanist tradition
of management. Our London campus
has been the base for our bachelor
in management, which is leading the
way in bachelor’s education through
its combination of humanities,
management, science and languages.
The best business schools are also
investing heavily in education and
research that promotes stakeholder
value and greener business. Emergent
Professor Simon
Mercado, Dean of ESCP
Europe, presenting
at one of many ESCP
Europe events
Winning the
THE award
was a huge
step in the
right direction
represents a
vote of
confidence in
our approach
to education
topics have included: values-based
investment, corporate responsibility,
sustainability and ethics. We have been
linked to high-profile initiatives around
energy transitions and sustainable
transport, including a unique European
Electrical Vehicle Road Trip, which was
widely covered by the European press.
In Berlin, the school has introduced
a successful master’s in sustainability
management and, together, all of
our campuses are prioritising the
sustainable development goals of the
United Nations.
Finally, but by no means least, our
sector has become more integrated at
international level and more focused
on international learning and research.
We are at the very forefront of
this process with our unique multi-
campus model, international mindset,
and structures. All of our degree
programmes are based on rotation
across campuses and the school
stands as a true model of cross-border
education and mobility.
Raising our profile as a bridge
between the UK and Europe
In the UK, one of our primary
challenges is to promote a brand
that is well known in France but less
so in the international context. This
includes moving away from any early
image as a satellite campus of a French
grand école to recognition as a top
UK-based school with high brand
capital and impact. We are competing
at the top end of the market with
some extremely powerful schools
and so we must continue to build
our brand and differentiate ourselves
as part of a unique, pan-European
educational ecosystem. Winning the
THE award was a huge step in the
right direction and represents a vote
of confidence in our approach to
education: international values, cross-
cultural learning and immersion in
As an alternative and private provider,
we also have to navigate the UK’s
higher education framework. We are
aiming to reach a point where we
are not just recognised as a higher
education institution by the new Office
for Students but are also given direct
teaching degree-awarding powers. We
currently have this capability in France
and Germany and wish to extend this
to the UK.
Both our UK chairman, Lord Gold, and
myself, see this as a top priority.
Whatever the outcome of Brexit, we
are committed to our operations in the
UK and we will continue to operate as
a bridge between the UK and Europe.
Our status as a successful Anglo-
European school gives us an important
role to play. We will work to maximise
the opportunities for businesses and
individuals to benefit from these
close links and will work to manage
any challenges that arise. No matter
the circumstances, we will remain a
centre of expertise on Europe and
Whatever the
outcome of
Brexit, we are
committed to
our operations
in the UK and
we will
continue to
operate as a
between the
UK and
“Re-Thinking Europe”,
Brexit: Quo Vadis? Lord
Gold, Tony Matharu and
Simon Mercado

This article was sponsored by ESCP Europe. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it.