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Pop Up, Veolia’s Open Social Innovation program

Launched in 2014, the Pop Up program has two aims: strengthen Veolia’s local roots by creating shared value locally, and open up its innovation processes by collaborating with social entrepreneurs who share Veolia’s values.

Pop Up has twin pillars to deliver on this ambition.

  • Contribute to the emergence and expansion of social entrepreneurs

Veolia enters into long-term financial and operational partnerships with local actors, such as social entrepreneur incubators, working to support the development of social entrepreneurship at the regional level.
In 2019, Veolia co-founded or agreed partnerships with 11 incubators and accelerators for social entrepreneurs in France and around the world. We are helping over 100 social entrepreneurs.

  • Co-create innovative solutions with social entrepreneurs

Veolia has an ecosystem of partners able to provide tangible responses to social concerns that impact our stakeholders (municipalities, residents and users, staff, industrial companies, etc.) across a range of issues: circular economy, access to essential services, social mediation, sustainable farming, transition into work, and so on.
Fifteen collaborations between Veolia and social entrepreneurs have emerged since Pop Up was set up. These cover provision of services, joint development of services and joint responses to calls for tenders.

In 2019, the Pop Up program was at work in 11 localities: Lyon (CentSept), Toulouse (Première Brique), Mexico City (Makesense), Paris region (Antropia ESSEC), Bordeaux (ATIS), Normandy (KATAPULT), Saint-Etienne (Ronalpia), India (Pop Up India), Avignon (Camina), Metz (ESS WE CAN) and the Hauts de France region of northern France. The process is the same each time: diagnose local issues, launch a call for projects, select and support highly promising social entrepreneurs, collaborate with Veolia.
Broader-based partnerships have also been set in place to assess the social impact of Pop Up (with the ESSEC business school), to make it easier for incubator partners to share best practices (with Ashoka) and to raise public awareness of social entrepreneurship (with Ticket for Change).