«Human societies, Ideas and Environments» Academy of Excellence

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«Human societies, Ideas and Environments» Academy of Excellence

200 permanent researchers in A+/A laboratories out of 620, within a scientific community of 2, 250 individuals.


Very profound changes are currently overtaking our contemporary societies. They concern very diverse but interdependent and complex domains, such as economic and political globalization, climate change and anthropomorphic impact, the digitalization of relationships between individuals and/or organizations, the financialization of the world economy, etc. At stake are the very processes of creation, circulation and distribution of social wealth and the context of the relationships between humans with their natural and societal environment.

The «Maison des Sciences de l’Homme et de la Société» (South East) involved in a Labex and an Equipex , the Business School research laboratories, and the Art Schools College all participate in structuring the activities carried out in the Academy. Analysis of contemporary transformation of human activity will require more than the use of conventional images and resources of the humanities and social sciences. It will also require the application of certain scientific domains until now considered isolated and autonomous, in a spirit of transdisciplinary logic, and recognition of the need for combining different approaches which the phenomena under study, without however sacrificing coherence.

  • The first of them, in a historical perspective dedicated to times of great change, concerns itself with the various relationships that man maintained with his natural and cultural environment during the phases of great transition that marked them
  • The second dimension, essential today, poses the question of the emergence of ideas, of their modes of diffusion (distribution of discourses, web philosophy, social networks, artistic creation etc), of the transformation they undergo, and how they relate to the changes in question
  • The third dimension deals with the identification of new fundamental characteristics of contemporary societies, and the analysis of their consequences as regards societal, cultural and economic organization and dynamics. The place, significance and impact of new generic technologies (communication and information technology; nanotechnologies etc) on the cultural and economic environment of contemporary societies and communities will be studied

The ambition calls most especially for an analysis of three aspects of the transformations currently affecting our societies:

The approaches developed in this Academy have a distinctive characteristic within the french hss’s: they make extensive use of digital technology and modeling. They too will draw benefit from the dynamics set in motion by the MSI. All in all, comprehension of the determining factors of these societal changes will provide a better understanding in order to follow and accompany the new ways in which markets, organizations and territories operate and behave. The fields of application that are targeted a priori will be developed in the 3 Reference Centers, and rolled out in the territory: in the tourist sector; the artistic domain; with a territorial overview; inter-company relationships.

The five academies will also be aimed at launching à la carte excellence training programs with majors and minors developed inside an international network, along with ad hoc funding, and rounded out by Summer Schools and Masterclasses of international renown (prizewinners from International Grand Prizes, Academicians, ERC’s, etc). A virtual Center for Pedagogical Innovation (VCPI) will bring together available skills, instruments and databases, accessible on a dedicated platform, in order to enrich students’ and/or employee’s training, and in order to accompany innovative entrepreneurs.

 Academy website

Persons in charge

  • Tobias Scheer, MSHS

Contact information

Members of the steering committee

  • Tobias Scheer, MSHS
  • Fabien Mathy, MSHS
  • Elisabeth Cunin, MSHS
  • Isabelle Théry-Parisot, MSHS
  • Ludovic Dibiaggio, SKEMA
  • Maurille Larivière, SDS
  • Fabien Gandon, INRIA
  • Frédéric Patras, LJAD

Members of the scientific council

Institutional partners of the Academy

6 UNS research units :

8 Schools :
• EDHEC Business School
• Centre National de Création Musicale (CIRM)
• Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Art Villa Arson
• Ecole Supérieure de Réalisation Audiovisuelle (ESRA)
• The Sustainable Design School (SDS)
• Ecole Supérieure de Danse de Cannes Rosella Hightower
• Conservatoire National à Rayonnement Régional de Nice (CNRR)

2 Research centers :
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