Axis 1 - Subjects and teaching methods

Subjects and teaching methods

Sustainability is a driving force in our teaching. With the 6 principles of PRME, our programs are in constant evolution with the subjects we teach.

We work to ensure that our students, through our training courses, acquire the knowledge, interpersonal skills and necessary savoir faire to build a more sustainable world and to become responsible entrepreneurs and managers.

Sustainability Challenge 


Launched in 2012, the Sustainability Challenge has given the opportunity to second-year Master’s students to hone their skills by addressing real-world issues. These are situations typically encountered by Belgian organizations.

Through a design sprint experience, students are encouraged to broaden their perspective, to confront different points of view, and to take a personal stand on current issues.

Over the course of three days, students are accompanied by twenty coaches and professors in order to develop innovative solutions that are economically viable and, above all, have a positive impact, i.e. a strong regenerative power on society and the territory. 

Working in multidisciplinary teams, each team pitches its final solution to a jury composed of company members, their coaches and experts.

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Housing Project

Since 1991, ICHEC Housing Project has enabled students to become more critical, responsible and committed to an equitable and sustainable world.

Our approach focuses on education for global citizenship and solidarity. We work in India, Benin and Belgium with several local partners responsible for associative local projects.

It is with our partners, as well as with the beneficiary communities, that the intercultural exchange takes place with our student groups in February.

Focused on intercultural openness and community service, this immersive experience builds capacity for action appropriate to the contexts and management situations encountered in these regions.

ICHEC has also been a partner of the Catholic University of Bukavu for many years and a member of its Board of Directors. Various projects continue to be carried out there, in particular the support to students with disabilities or in precarious situations via scholarships, under the umbrella of ICHEC Coopération Internationale asbl.

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​​​​​​The status of engaged student

Taking on responsibilities within an association? Actively engaging in an NGO? And all while pursuing studies! ICHEC establishes a status to support engaged students.

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Entrepreneurship and society: a dedicated training and research unit

Students are offered three subject groups with projects that combine social, environmental and economic issues, along with an entrepreneurial approach rooted in the reality of daily business management.

Entrepreneurship and society

Companies must consider the social and economic issues related to their activities: scarcity of natural resources, ethical management of the supply chain, staff well-being, use of energy, waste management… along with opportunities for new markets and new avenues for innovation.

We wish to develop students’ sense of responsibility and an understanding of the systemic nature of economic, environmental and social issues. Furthermore, we wish to provide them with concrete management skills that will enable them to develop innovative, ambitious and realistic strategies within companies.

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The North-South subject group adopts a multidisciplinary approach designed to help students: 

understand and critically analyze current development issues and economic models;

lead or accompany projects, initiatives, partnerships or companies with sustainable and fair development dynamics; 

Through this approach, students become conscientious agents of change. 

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The "Entrepreneurship and SMEs" subject group consists of these three courses that provide students with the necessary tools to understand the specifics of SME management. To achieve this, they are encouraged to work as closely as possible to the realities of the field. 

The Mowo project

Stemming from the need to create bridges between a secondary school and ICHEC, the "MoWo" project (for Molenbeek - Woluwé) was launched in 2004. This school collaboration offers our students the opportunity to accompany, on a voluntary basis, 7th year students in GTPE (Management of Very Small Enterprises) at the Institut des Ursulines in their business creation project.

The SusTech4Africa project

Since 2020, several students have been engaged in an internship and thesis with a Senegalese entrepreneur. In partnership with Ondernemers voor Ondernemers (OVO), our students are immersed in the socio-economic realities of African entrepreneurs in order to live an entrepreneurial experience that is culturally different from what they might encounter in Belgium. 

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Certificate in Innovation and New Sustainable Business Models 

Since its inception, ICHEC has developed multiple education programmes for adults in management-related fields, including the certificate in innovation and new sustainable business models. The latter is the result of collaboration between ECAM and ICHEC and is innovative, multidisciplinary, project-oriented and based on a design thinking process. 

Supervised by field experts who combine a scientific approach with business knowledge, participants are challenged to build and deploy viable and resilient solutions while contributing to solving global social and environmental issues. 

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Masterclass in Sustainable  Finance

The course was designed and developed by a consortium of sustainable finance academics from ICHEC Brussels Management School (Christel Dumas), ULB (Marek Hudon) and UNamur (Sophie Béreau), supported by an advisory board composed of sustainable finance experts from the field. It is an introduction to sustainable finance for high level professionals working in a range of sectors, from political leaders, university deans, public figures to directors of associations, European commission technocrats and executive directors willing to transform their practices towards improved sustainability, and who realize that, to do so, they need to understand how finance impacts climate challenges, food, housing, biodiversity, culture, or energy, to name a few societal challenges. 

Participants will become part of an alumni community and integrate our partners’ networks. Once they complete the Master Class, they will be invited to join the Club of Rome’s EU Chapter as guests for one year, for free. They will become eligible to join Solifin’s network should they be interested in impact investing. All members also receive invitations to events by Foundation for Future Generations upon enrolment in the programme.We are looking forward to this journey with you! 

More information on the website

ICHEC Sustainable: Axis 1 and its projects

In 2020, an in-depth strategic reflection on sustainability issues was launched within our institution. This resulted in four strategic pillars, the first of which relates to our subjects and teaching methods. 

In October 2021, four projects were launched, each composed of a multidisciplinary project team and combining different profiles (students, teachers, administrative staff, researchers, members of the management committee, etc.). 


  • Organizing a sustainable back-to-school event for first-year bachelor (BAC1) and first-year master (MASTER 1) students
    • Engaging 450 participants in the « Planetary Boundaries Fresk »
    • Incorporating sustainability themes into first-year bachelor core courses
    • Hosting a conference by Nicolas Lambert on sustainable marketing
  • Introducing the "Engaged Student" status
  • Implementing comprehensive program reforms to systematically integrate systemic issues throughout courses and curricula, irrespective of the subject matter, from inception to completion.
  • Screening and discussion of the documentary film "Bigger than Us" by Flore Vasseur for first-year bachelor students
  • Training 60 teachers on sustainability fundamentals (module 1) and issues pertaining to the economic and financial systems, as well as the entire corporate value chain (module 2)
  • Conducting the « Climate Fresk » event with 60 teachers
  • Training 20 teachers on the « Planetary Boundaries Fresk»
  • Compiling and sharing a list of sustainability-focused internship opportunities through search engines.
  • Creation of a repository of hard skills related to sustainability and management
  • Study of the importance of soft skills in relation to sustainability
  • Creation of the first introductory day on sustainable development for all BAC1 and strengthening the integration of sustainable subjects in many BAC1 courses
  • Creation of a teacher training programme on the fundamentals of sustainability as well as more advanced modules