Audencia Business School, with its research professors, works on several research projects exploring a range of CSR issues. These projects reflect the diversity and multidisciplinary of CSR research and rely on international cooperation. 

Current projects

Purchasing and Supply chain Management: A Sustainability Perspective

Developing the Second Edition Textbook on “Purchasing and Supply chain Management: A Sustainability Perspective”
Following the recent success of this unique textbook combining Sustainability and Purchasing and Supply Chain management, the authors are engaged in developing a new edition of the book that integrates new material and topics, the latest research and new and updated case examples. This rapidly developing field means that both business practices and research has evolved significantly over the last 3 years. New developments in sustainable and ethical sourcing, the integration of sustainable development goals, recognition of slavery in supply chains, global commitments on carbon reduction among other areas lead to an exciting new book edition.

Project holder(s):

  • Thomas E. Johnsen Politecnico di Milano
  • Mickey Howard Exeter University Business School
  • Joe Miemczyk Audencia Business School


Contact: Joe Miemczyk,

Supported by Routledge

Website (First Edition)

Beginning in the 1970s, attention worldwide has been focused on information privacy.  As the years have passed, concerns about information privacy have only increased:  Over this same time frame – from the 1970s to today – governments around the world have grappled with their approaches to regulating issues associated with information privacy.  It is apparent that varying regulatory approaches to cross-border data flows are causing great consternation for firms that compete internationally.  Studies that document corporate practices regarding information privacy are rare if not absent. In this project, we examine how focused vs. diffused consumer activism affects corporate practices about information privacy.  Specifically, we want to compare how companies behave in collecting and using cookie data, personal profile, and digital activities under different regimes of information privacy (US vs. Europe). 

Project holder(s):

  • Caroline Lancelot Miltgen, AUDENCIA
  • Gwendolyn Lee, University of Florida, USA
  • Jean Yves Martin et Guillaume Moreau, Ecole Centrale Nantes

    Contact: Caroline Lancelot Miltgen,

    Funded by: Audencia Foundation

    With this project we want to open the black box of the Responsible Investment (RI)  mainstream in studying the use, adoption, and transformation of ESG data within financial institutions. We are especially focusing on the social agency underlying the institutionalization of ESG data as a proxy for RI mainstreaming. Based on the concept of institutional work (Lawrence and Suddaby, 2006). This project will contribute to the current discussion that is going on within the RI field on ways to define a path to   value for ESG in financial institutions. With this study we review the current state of ESG integration in financial institutions and help identify this path to value.

    Project holder(s):

    • Céline Louche, Audencia Business School
    • Emma Avetisyan,(Audencia Business School
    • Christel Dumas, ICHEC, Belgium

    Contact: Emma Avetisyan,

    Funded by: Audencia Foundation

    Sustainable innovation networks

    Despite it is clear by now that innovation is an open and collaborative process the mechanisms explaining how to develop a successful sustainable innovation are obscure. This project takes a network perspective on the problem and investigates how firms can leverage on network structural characteristics in order to access complementary assets; how they recombine their network to exploit those assets; and finally how they define a new network structure to achieve a long-term competitive advantage. 

    Research partners

    Davide Luzzini (Audencia)

    Jury Gualandris (UCD)

    Hervé Legenvre (EIPM)

    Time line : 2016-2018



    Food supply chain

    A long-lasting debate is active regarding the balance between the global and local food systems, the former being characterized by intensive production, international trade, and sustainability concerns; the latter being naturally sustainable but often lacking scale and financial viability. This project investigates the characteristics of global and local supply chain networks that might help solving this dichotomy.

    Research partners

    Davide Luzzini (Audencia)

    Annachiara Longoni (ESADE Business School)

    Contact : Davide Luzzini,

    Time line : 2016-2018

    International Purchasing Survey (IPS)

    IPS is a long term data collection program focusing on purchasing strategies, practices, and performance of companies in the manufacturing and service sectors. The first two survey waves have been conducted in 2010 and 2014 and a third one is planned. Within the broader scope of the project an increasingly relevant stream is studying to what extent sustainability has become a widespread competitive priority, how companies are facing the sustainability challenge, and which practices significantly affect the triple bottom line. 

    Research partners

    Audencia Business School

    Aalto University

    University College Dublin

    Universität der Bundeswehr München

    Contact : Davide Luzzini,

    Time line : 2010-2020


    Past projects

    Corporate Responsibility in Different Varieties of Capitalism: Exploring the Role of National Institutions

    The project examines patterns of CSR adoption in firms in 24 OECD countries.  It shows that firms in the UK, France, and Spain are among the overall leaders.  When correcting for firm specific characteristics, the US and Japan lag behind most OECD countries.  CSR follows distinct national patterns with different strengths and weaknesses.  Two interesting findings:

    1. We find a high correlation between CSR adoption and scandals related to irresponsible corporate behaviors.
    2. Institutions such as employee representation on boards and the presence of works councils were associated with more CSR and less irresponsible behavior.  Meanwhile, liberalizing product markets is also associated with more CSR, but also more irresponsible actions.

    Project holder(s)

    • Emma Avetisyan (Audencia Nantes)
    • Gregory Jackson (Freie Universität Berlin)
    • Julia Bartosch (Freie Universität Berlin)
    • Philipp Thompson, Kristine Luitjens, Katja Lehmann, Emma Avetisyan, Stephen Brammer, Luc Fransen, Tanusree Jain, Daniel Kinderman, Jette Steen Knudsen, Nora Lohmeyer, Eunmi Mun, Nikolas Rathert


    Contact: Gregory Jackson,

    Supported by: Bertelsmann Foundation

    Download the full study

    Decision processes in terms of disruptive innovation: the case of nanotechnology.
    This research project seeks to better understand how companies approach, at the managerial level, breakthrough innovations in areas using nanotechnology, and in the various industry segments (from the production of basic materials, to intermediates and final products) .  Through this viewpoint, it is specifically designed to analyze:

    • Decision processes in technological innovation
    • The forms of stakeholder involvement and participation
    • The methods of anticipating and integrating potential risks and the associated liabilities
    • Outlooks for nanotechnology in developing strategies

    This project focuses in particular on the ways in which managers cope with regulatory uncertainties and shortcomings as well as with proven potential risks in order to anticipate, decide and act. We use Justification Theory (Boltanski and Thevenot 1991) to account for the arbitrations and compromises used more or less consciously by corporate stakeholders and that can be seen in their rhetoric.

    Project leader(s):


    • Gervaise Debucquet, Audencia Business School
    • Céline Louche, Audencia Business School
    • Céline Legrand, Audencia Business School
    • Francisco Chinesta, Ecole Centrale Nantes

    Financed by: Audencia Foundation

    CSR Skills Project

    In partnership with Centrale Nantes, Audencia is carrying out a research project funded by the Pays de la Loire Regional Council on the skills needed to develop CSR initiatives among SOHOs and SMEs in the region. The objective of this research project is, firstly, to identify the skills necessary for defining and implementing CSR initiatives in companies in the Pays de la Loire region, in particular in SMEs and SOHOs, and, secondly, to explore ways to develop these skills.

    Project leader: André Sobzcak

    For more information, visit the CSR Skills Project website

    CSR Barometer 2014 in Belgium

    The Corporate Responsibility Barometer is a research project organized as part of the "BASF Deloitte Elia" Chair on sustainable development, and has been jointly organized by the University of Antwerp and the Antwerp Management School, the Louvain School of Management, Audencia Nantes, Business & Society Belgium and Kauri. The barometer is supported by the FEB and the Belgian Chambers of Commerce.

    Project leader: Céline Louche

    More info
    Observatory on support needs of SMEs in CSR

    In 2014, the CSR Chair launched its observatory on support needs in CSR. In partnership with the BVA Institute, every two years it surveys a sample of 400 entrepreneurs.
    Our questioning is based on executive viewpoints, their CSR practices and support needs.

    Project leader: CSR Chair

    Educ'alim research-action project

    Overseen by the Crédit Agricole Chair on responsible farming, the Educ'alim research-action project is designed to sustainably change the food behavior of children in primary schools, leading them to like food of safer, diversified, sustainable and good nutritional quality. The program has been funded by the Loire Valley Regional Directorate for Food, Agriculture and Forestry, and backed by the Fleury Michon Company.