The Foundation’s activities, while always aligned with its own mission, change over time depending on the needs of society, the economic environment and the interests of the donors themselves.
Some of these activities are carried out by the Foundation itself, while others are carried out in collaboration with other entities, which may in turn be foundations, corporations, associations, etc.
In all cases, aim of the Foundation is to attract donations, which allow it, directly or indirectly, to expand its charitable work in different fields related to the comprehensive education of people and research, as a means of improving the society of today and of the future. The Foundation obtains its funds through fundraising campaigns for each of its projects.
The Board of Trustees implements specific projects in different areas, through which it channels and carries out the Foundation’s mission. Donors can select the campaign they are interested in and contribute to it directly, with the Board of Trustees scrupulously respecting the will of the donor.
Currently, the Foundation has four priority lines of action, which are:
The students grants, whether in the form of scholarships to cover academic fees, or aid for travel purposes, so that they can reside in different cities and countries, in an environment which is inclusive and respectful of diversity, are an essential tool in the search for global development and that social equality that can lead to good opportunities for everyone, regardless of their country of origin, sex, race, religion or family income.
The IESE Foundation has set up, under the auspices of the International IESE Foundation, a permanent fund (endowment) for mobility scholarships for doctoral students of economics and management who are developing a people-centered approach to business management. After obtaining their doctorate, these students usually dedicate themselves to academic tasks in universities and business schools around the world, so the impact has a multiplier effect.
The Foundation collaborates with various residential colleges affiliated to Spanish universities, to support the comprehensive education of university students. These residential colleges offer accommodation to university students from different parts of Spain and even from other countries. They also offer cultural, sports and socially responsible activities, as well as academic courses with university-recognized credits. At present, the Foundation collaborates regularly with several residential colleges affiliated to the University of Barcelona. This aid takes the form of scholarships to cover undergraduate or postgraduate studies for talented young people with limited resources, or through direct aid to colleges, normally to improve facilities.
Responsible investing as a form of investment activity which takes into account ethical considerations. These aspects focus on the environmental, social and good corporate governance impact. The abbreviation ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) is very frequently used to refer to these aspects, and not only in the field of investment, but in all facets of business management. The Foundation is currently engaged in two projects with a very different approach: while the first focuses on aspects of academic research in relation to corporate governance and the dissemination of best practices (Governance), the second is centered around impact investing. The Foundation has also been collaborating for years with the organizers of the largest annual student conference on Responsible Business: Doing Good Doing Well.
Successful companies usually have a corporate governance model for the balanced management of their relationships with shareholders, senior managers and other stakeholders. The role of corporate governance goes beyond regulatory compliance and encompasses crucial areas such as the long-term development of the company. But corporate governance is a complex issue that can become the cause of numerous corporate crises. Given the rise of increasingly organized shareholder activism, good governance is the only way to improve long-term corporate results and develop an organizational culture based on professional management, accountability, ethics and transparency. The mission of the IESE Foundation Chair of Corporate Governance is to develop ideas that help improve corporate governance. The current holder of this position is Prof. Jordi Canals.
Impact investments are investment projects whose purpose is to not only produce an attractive return for the investor, but also a positive social or environmental impact. The Foundation collaborates in this area with the IESE for Impact Community, which is an impact investment vehicle financed and managed directly by IESE MBA students, and incorporated as an independent non-profit Association. The objective of the fund is underpinned by two fundamental aspects: Social impact (financially supporting companies that want to generate a positive impact on society) and learning (providing a positive and practical experience to the students themselves).
Doing Good Doing Well is an annual conference organized and run entirely by students from IESE’s Responsible Business Club. The Club has been hosting the conference since 2001 and it has now become an annual tradition as well as the largest student-led conference in all of Europe. It is an opportunity to hear directly from professionals about the challenges and opportunities they experience on a daily basis, and how their jobs and organizations are interconnected with society.
The IESE Foundation has been collaborating for years with the educational and research mission of IESE Business School, through the promotion of university campuses where activities can be carried out in favor of the development of a management style that puts the person at the heart of the company, with multi-stakeholder focus aware that -beyond providing value for the shareholder- the company must always take into account the needs of its other stakeholders (employees, customers, suppliers, social environment, etc.). This close collaboration does not limit (nor has it ever limited) the ability of each party to make its own decisions, since there is total legal independence between IESE and the IESE Foundation. The relationship between both entities is governed by specific collaboration agreements. To promote these campuses, the Foundation launches fundraising projects, in which IESE also collaborates, normally with campaigns aimed at its alumni.
In recent decades, Madrid has become a global business center and one of the most important economic growth areas in Europe. The expansion of the IESE campus in Madrid, completed in 2020, is one of the most important challenges that the Foundation has recently undertaken. Through an investee company, it has built and leased to IESE a building of more than 16,000 m², including a parking lot for 300 spaces. In addition to housing 60 employees, it includes the following teaching facilities: 4 amphitheater classrooms, 16 study rooms and 1 auditorium with more than 500 seats. The total cost of the architectural and construction project was 24 million euros. In order to finance the purchase of the land and the construction, the Foundation launched a fundraising campaign.
In 2014, a 2,000-square-meter historic building located at Maria Teresa Straße 15, next to Europa Platz, was chosen as the appropriate location for the IESE campus in Munich. The Foundation actively collaborated in raising the necessary funds to renovate the building and adapt it for educational use, a project that was completed in 2015. The new facilities have enabled the launch of courses for German and Central European businessmen and managers, as well as an Executive MBA. The German campus is also expected to host two research centers, one on Family Business and the other on Manufacturing and Innovation.
In 2010, IESE established itself in an iconic building in downtown Manhattan, built in 1916 and which was the former home Columbia Artists Management Inc. These premises in New York has brought professors and researchers into close contact with leading businessmen in various sectors, and have created an environment that stimulates learning. A year earlier, in 2009, the IESE Foundation signed a collaboration agreement with IESE USA Inc. to help this entity promote its educational and scientific activity in North America. Over the years, the Foundation has contributed almost half a million euros to this project.
The Foundation’s international development cooperation work is implemented through charitable projects in the areas of health, business and education. The most significant support goes to projects in Africa.
The Kimlea Girls Technical Training Centre is a professional training center for young women who have not been able to continue their studies because of their families’ situation of extreme poverty. At Kimlea, students can learn different trades, as well as reinforce basic knowledge of reading, writing, mathematics, hygiene and health. They subsequently have opportunity to do internships in hotels, restaurants, hospitals, residences, and apply for different jobs after their training. These positions are of great help to the families of the young women, and offer them an opportunity to build a better professional and personal future. The IESE Foundation collects funds to donate to the Kianda Foundation and grants scholarships to the students of the Kimlea Girls Technical Training Centre. This initiative helps to cover tuition and accommodation expenses. The young women who benefit from this aid are between 14 and 18 years old and come from very disadvantaged rural areas.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo is the third poorest country in the world, only behind the Central African Republic and Burundi. According to UN data, 34% of children living in this area are subjected to child labor and exploitation. More than half of adults have never been to school or have only attended primary school. Providing children with an education contributes to lifting the country out of poverty. Therefore the Foundation’s aid to the Democratic Republic of the Congo is channeled through the Bozindo school in Kinshasa.
The Ivory Coast was a stable and prosperous country until a turbulent period in the 1990s following a deep economic crisis that led to a coup and war in 2011. The Etimoé and Makoré school projects were established as a response to the huge need to educate children from the neighborhoods on the outskirts of the city. Both schools have been promoted by “Famille et Education”, a non-profit association whose objective is to educate boys and girls from nursery school level to the end of the “Licée” stage, at the age of 17. When both schools reach full capacity and occupancy, they will be providing an education to around 3,000 boys and girls.
The Foundation allocates funds to the maintenance of this hospital located in the southwest of Nigeria which carries out important work in preventing the mortality of children and pregnant women in the province of Enugu. The origins of the hospital date back to 1993, when it was founded as a non-profit organization to serve the health needs of the local population. Since then, and thanks to the generosity of the donations that the Niger Foundation Hospital has received, the facilities have been expanded and improved. Throughout these years, it has also participated in various campaigns for vaccination and prevention of infectious diseases (malaria, AIDS, tuberculosis), in collaboration with international organizations.
The main objective of this project located in Eastlands, one of the poorest suburbs of Nairobi, is to facilitate employment in Kenya. It is sponsored by the Strathmore Educational Trust and the Educational Initiatives Trust, and its core principles are: encourage entrepreneurship, responsibility and integrity; promote the value of excellence in all spheres of human life; provide first level training; and promote Christian and human virtues in business, as drivers of professional growth in values and, consequently, to reduce corruption.
Harambee ONGD is an international charitable project that promotes initiatives for the health of mothers and children, for the promotion of women and education in Africa and about Africa, through development projects in the sub-Saharan area and awareness-raising activities in the rest of the world, giving visibility to the values, qualities and future possibilities of Africa as a whole.
Harambee focuses its efforts and energy on education, promoting projects aimed directly at making the educational and social mission of the school in Africa more effective: training teachers and providing school materials to rural schools, transmitting innovative pedagogical techniques for young people, promoting the social and cultural growth of women in rural areas, facilitating access to education through scholarships for primary, secondary, professional training, adult women’s education, promoting research by women scientists and supporting health programs.