Exclusive insight into the digital revolution.

Netexplo (“Netexplorateur” until late 2011) is an independent observatory that studies the impact of digital tech on society and business.

It was created in 2007 by Martine Bidegain and Thierry Happe in partnership with the French Senate and the French Ministry for the Digital Economy.

Netexplo takes a unique approach to understanding digital society. Through its International University Network, the Netexplo Observatory scans the world for the new faces of tech and their inventions.

The founding partners, the Senate, the Ministry for the Digital Economy and HEC Paris business school share Netexplo’s commitment to covering every aspect of digital innovation, whether technological, commercial, organisational, social or environmental.

Netexplo’s innovation watch and analyses focus on emerging uses of digital tech worldwide. The Netexplo Observatory is founded on a twofold conviction:

  • Innovation stems more from disruptive practices than the technology itself.
  • While technology will continue to be driven by the world’s best universities (AIST, MIT, Singapore, Stanford, Technion, etc.) new ways of using digital tech in emerging countries (Brazil, Chile, China, India, Kenya, South Africa, etc.) will establish new ecosystems for information, trade, the environment or community action. Our spotter network is especially active in these key countries for the near future.

The Netexplo Observatory’s unique approach is based on:

  • its International University Network, a global network of digital innovation spotters, including major universities in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe.
  • the Netexplo 100, an annual selection of the 100 most promising digital initiatives and the 10 Netexplo award winners who take part each year in the Netexplo Forum in Paris, in partnership with UNESCO
  • predictive sociological analyses of the trends behind those digital innovations, published in the annual Netexplo Reports.

2015 Netexplo Forum on the evening News (only in French) : 

To study digital society and explore the world for new uses of tech, the Netexplo Observatory builds its original approach on an international university network.

This voluntary network is made up of lecturers in tech-related subjects at globally renowned universities. In return for their participation they benefit from Netexplo’s work and content. Their students are tasked with spotting the most innovative and promising digital projects worldwide.

The universities in the Netexplo Network are:

  • Bezalel Art & Design Academy, Jerusalem (Israel)
  • Columbia University, New York (USA)
  • ESPM, Sao Paolo (Brazil)
  • HEC Paris (France)
  • HEC Montreal (Canada)
  • IHECS Brussels, (Belgium)
  • Indian Institute of Technology, Bangalore (India)
  • Kaist (South Korea)
  • Keio University, Graduate School of Media Design, Tokyo (Japan)
  • MIT Media Lab, Boston (USA)
  • National University of Singapore (Singapore)
  • University of Chile, Santiago (Chile)
  • Cape Town University, Cape Town, (South Africa)
  • University of Technology, Sydney (Australia)
  • Stanford University, California (USA)
  • UTSEUS Shanghai University, Shanghai (China)
  • Oxford University, (United Kingdom)
  • IE Business School, Madrid, (Spain)
  • Jawarwal Nehru University, Delhi, (India)


UNAB (Unesco/Netexplo Advisory Board)

To boost the university network’s thinking, Netexplo and UNESCO, represented by Indrajit Banerjee, Director, Knowledge Societies Division, Communication & Information Sector, decided, in line with their common goals, to create l’UNAB (UNESCO/Netexplo Advisory Board).

Its mission is to disseminate the latest knowledge of digital tech from the world’s leading universities to the greatest number.

On February 3, 2015 the first session of UNAB took place at UNESCO House, Paris.

UNAB will meet every year at UNESCO House to enable the lecturers in the Netexplo University Network to share their vision of the challenges inherent in the digital revolution and new technologies.

The members of UNAB are as follows:

Michal Eitan
Head of Master of Technology and Design
Bezalel Academy (Israel)

Julia Prior
Assistant Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Innovation) and Professor of the Faculty of Engineering and IT
University of Technology Sydney (UTS) (Australia)

Rajeev Srinivasan
Adjuct Professor of Strategy & Innovation
Indian Institute of Technology, Bangalore (India)

Ian Monroe
Lecturer on Sustainable Development
Stanford University (USA)

Ben Leong
Associate Professor of Computer Science at the School of Computing 
National University of Singapore (Singapore)

Damien Van Achter
Professor of digital journalism
IHECS (Belgium)

Leonardo Bonanni
Lecturer on Sustainable Supply Chains
MIT Media Lab, Boston – Columbia University, New York (USA)

Pierre Balloffet
Media and Communication Professor
HEC Montreal (Canada)

Wallace Chigona
Media and Communication Professor
Cape Town University (South Africa)

Marcelo Pimenta
Professor of Marketing and Innovation
ESPM Sao Paolo (Brazil)

MonZen Tzen
French Director of UTSEUS
UTSEUS Shanghai University


Pedro Pineda
Professor of e.commerce
University of Chile (Chile)

Masa Inakage
Director, Keio Media Design Research Institute,
Keio University Tokyo (Japan)

May Sengendo
Academic Staff at the School of Women and Gender Studies
Makerere University (Uganda)

Youngchul Sung
Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering
Kaist (South Korea)

Steve Moyle
Lecturer on Software Engineering Programme
Oxford University (United Kingdom)

Enrique Dans
Professor of Information Technologies and Systems
IE Business School, Madrid (Spain)

Amita Singh
Professor, Centre for the Study of Law and Governance
Jawarwal Nerhu University, Delhi (India)

Julien Lévy
Director e.business Centre
HEC Paris (France)

Charles Henri Besseyre des Horts
Professor of Human Resources Management
HEC Paris (France)

Laurent Maruani
Professor of Economy and Marketing
HEC Paris (France)