50 Years of INSEAD Women
Leading Academic Excellence


Our history


50 years of women at INSEAD


In 1967, INSEAD became one of the first business schools in the world to admit women to its MBA programme when it welcomed Hélène Ploix MBA’68 and Solange Perret MBA’68 to the Fontainebleau campus.

By doing so, INSEAD effectively departed from the traditional business school model - as business schools were largely exclusive to men - and made a strong statement about gender parity in education. Both women went on to become highly successful leaders in finance and international business, respectively, paving the way for future generations of women at INSEAD.

A year-long celebration




To honour this 50-year milestone, the school is launching iW50 at INSEAD, a year-long celebration in which we will honour the past, present and future of women at INSEAD, while also reaffirming a commitment—held equally by men and women at INSEAD—to equip women for success at every career stage and in every organisation.


We have a three-pronged vision for iW50:


  • Celebrate our history

Convene our community of men and women to honour the past and present of women at INSEAD.

  • Build our legacy

Establish a foundation on which we can reinforce INSEAD’s dedication to supporting and sustaining the professional achievements of women.

  • Empower INSEAD Women

Advance women in leadership roles and empower women to be a force for good in business and society.

Taking action


Transforming vision into reality


Our goals for this academic year and beyond include:

  • Increase the representation of women among our highly qualified students and leaders at INSEAD
  • Actively engage men in our efforts to support the professional advancement of women
  • Fund scholarships for female students and future leaders
  • Increase global awareness of INSEAD alumnae through stories and videos 
  • Develop and disseminate research and knowledge about women in business
  • Lead targeted research exploring specific challenges women face in business and solutions to those challenges
  • Develop the community of INSEAD scholars focused on gender issues
  • Increase the number of INSEAD cases with female protagonists
  • Connect alumni to INSEAD through iW50 events
  • Engage and educate the INSEAD community and broader network about iW50 and the INSEAD Gender Initiative



for key events





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