Master in Sustainability Entrepreneurship and Innovation (MSc)
Meet our students: Yacine Cherraoui, Class of 2024

Yacine Cherraoui - Master in Sustainability Entrepreneurship and Innovation (MSc) (Class of 2024) - ESCP Business SchoolYacine is a current student in the MSc in Sustainability Entrepreneurship and Innovation, finishing up his second and final year in the programme. Yacine recently won the prestigious Dean’s Award, an honor given to top ESCP students for their exemplary achievements and commitment to the wider school community. In this interview, Yacine shares insights on his motivation to pursue this degree programme, experiences with the hands-on projects, and what he hopes for in the future.

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Yacine, and I am from France. Before joining ESCP Business School, I completed a bilingual double Bachelor of Science in Chemistry, with a minor in intercultural studies, from the French-German University (DFH-UFA) at the University of Upper Alsace in France and the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg in Germany.

After earning my bachelor's degree, I worked at the innovation and investment hub Venture Lab of the Niterra Group in Berlin. There, I developed my knowledge and skills in both startup and corporate innovation ecosystems through venture-building activities in the fields of health, mobility, and climate tech.

In addition to my studies, I have consistently worked in various capacities, including tutoring underserved students, coordinating events, and taking on several volunteer roles. I am also passionate about martial arts and long-distance running.

You studied Chemistry in your Bachelor. How do you think your science background has helped you in your studies (and will help you in your future career)?

Chemistry, as the study of matter, holds a central position in science by establishing the groundwork for understanding different scientific fields. I therefore believe that having a background in chemistry has sharpened my analytical thinking, problem-solving skills, and attention to detail, all of which are crucial for addressing complex challenges in sustainability and entrepreneurship.

The Company Consultancy Projects provides hands-on experience working with a real company. Tell us about your CCP.

During the CCP, my team and I collaborated closely with the sustainability team at Weleda AG, the world’s leading manufacturer of certified natural cosmetics and anthroposophical pharmaceuticals, on their sustainability strategy. These experiences within the study program allowed me to apply our theoretical classroom knowledge to real-world practice.

What’s the impact you would like to make in today’s business world?

On a personal level, I believe that every individual's actions matter. I strive to contribute positively to society by rethinking how I live and make choices. By doing so, I aim to play a role in the collective effort to transform our world onto a sustainable and resilient path.

What made you want to study a degree at the intersection of sustainability and entrepreneurship?

With a background in natural science, I chose to study a degree at the intersection of sustainability and entrepreneurship to equip myself with the business acumen needed to create and develop new ventures that are technically and financially viable while having a net positive impact on both the natural environment and human societies.

The Sustainable Lifestyles Venture project (done in collaboration with the UN Environment Programme) is a significant part of the programme. Can you share what you did in the SLV project?

During the SLV project, my team and I developed a venture focused on retrofitting existing buildings with innovative green infrastructure, such as green roofs. Our goal was to create aesthetic solutions that transform the way roofs and buildings are built or retrofitted, contributing to the decarbonization of the construction industry. Our products and services were designed to enhance drainage systems, boost thermal and energy performance, and support wildlife habitats and air quality. We successfully continued the project after the SLV by securing a pilot project in Berlin.

How did it feel to study in Berlin and Paris? What are the benefits of studying in these two vibrant cities?

Although changing cities several times during the program can be challenging, both Berlin and Paris are incredible places to be. This experience allows you to immerse yourself in French and German culture, history, and work ecosystems, while also building beautiful friendships. It allows you to expand your professional network in two of Europe’s leading entrepreneurial cities.

To what kind of person would you recommend the MSEI programme? Do you have any tips for students starting in the programme?

Many factors come into play. I recommend this program to individuals who aspire to join a top European business school for its numerous benefits and who want to learn the fundamentals of sustainability, entrepreneurship, and innovation from experts. It is ideal for those looking to build or join leading ventures that will shape tomorrow’s world.