Honouring Professor Jacques Defourny in his retirement

The EMES co-founder (1996-2001) and first president of the Network for two successive terms (2002-2010), Jacques Defourny, will be retiring from his university teaching responsibilities this academic year. Professor of third-sector economics at HEC-University of Liege, also founded the Centre for Social Economy (CES) in Liege back in 1995. Professor Defourny was one of the initial EMES International Research Network co-founders from its informal beginning in 1996 and served as its president from 2002 to 2010. He has been a pioneering leader in the “SE field” (social enterprise, social entrepreneurship, social economy and social innovation) research for over 25 years.

He has made a sustained contribution to research and field development related to the social economy, for which he is internationally recognised. In the last ten years, these projects have included, inter alia:

  • Co-ordination (with Marthe Nyssens) of the “International Comparative Social Enterprise Models (ICSEM) Project”, involving over 200 researchers from some 50 countries across the world, in partnership with the “Interuniversity Attraction Pole on Social Enterprise” (IAP-SOCENT), funded by the Belgian Science Policy Office and several foundations (2013-2017). The IAP-SOCENT is the only research programme selected in economics and management among those coordinated by professors from universities in the French-speaking community of Belgium.
  • Co-ordination of a research project jointly carried out by EMES and East-Asian scholars on the emergence of social enterprises in China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan (2008-2011).
  • Co-ordination of a research project on “Prospects for Development of Social Enterprises in CEE and CIS countries”, financed by the UNDP Bratislava Regional Centre (2005-2007).

He will be honoured at HEC-University of Liege on Friday, 9th September 2022, where his CES colleagues will organise a celebration attended by many colleagues and friends. His commitment and service to advancing the SE field and consolidating the EMES community for decades have earned him the respect and gratitude from colleagues, scholars, students, practitioners and policy-makers from all over the world.

We are thrilled that this celebration coincides with the #20EMESaninversary of the formal founding of EMES. You can visit the devoted #20EMESaninversary web to celebrate with the EMES community and enjoy our timeline from 1996 to 2022.

We invite you to be part of the celebration and write a message in the comments, which we will surely pass on to Professor Jacques Defourny!