Authentification methods

With dozens of databases available, it’s easy to get lost in all the authentication methods. Although we try to make it as simple and user-friendly as possible, we often have to make compromises with the providers who have their own policies and technical constraints. So let’s go on a tour of all the authentication processes you might encounter when accessing the databases subscribed by the library. The most common and probably the most transparent solution is IP based authentication. For those of you who don’t know, an IP address is a number that uniquely identifies your computer (or your tablet or your phone) on the network. When you connect to the HEC network, you are automatically given an IP address from the pool of addresses owned by HEC. And because our providers know what IP addresses are owned by HEC, they can tell that you are accessing their servers from campus and they give you access to everything we subscribe to. No login, no password, hard to beat that! However, there’s a problem with this method: what happens when you aren’t on campus? This is where our reverse proxy comes in. The reverse proxy is an intermediary. Instead of going straight to the provider’s website, you send requests to the proxy, the proxy sends them to the provider, and sends you back the responses. Because the proxy is on the HEC network, it’s as if you were accessing the database from campus. For that method to work you have to click on the links that we put on the library website: you might think that you’re going directly to the provider’s website but actually you’re interrogating our reverse proxy (If you look carefully you will see “” in the URL). In that case, of course, you have to type in your HEC username and password, but it is still IP based authentication.


Now let’s look at another authentication method that we use frequently, called Single Sign-On (SSO). More specifically we are going to talk about SAML (short for Security Assertion Markup Language), which is one way to do SSO. Single Sign-On basically means that you can log into many different services with only one user ID and password. It comes in many flavours and one of them is SAML, a useful implementation when the services are distributed across many domains on the web (like our databases). With SAML, when you want to access a service, you are redirected to an Identity Provider (IdP). If you log in successfully with the IdP, you are issued an “assertion” that you pass on to the service provider and in turn the service provider will grant you access to the allowed resources. In our case, HEC play the role of the Identity Provider and the Services Providers are the many database publishers with whom we have a subscription

That way, you log in once, the publishers don’t need to keep a database of all HEC users’credentials and you don’t have to remember yet another username and password.
Do you remember the software “Shibboleth” we talked about in the introduction? It’s a SAML implementation.
It’s great news when a provider allows one of these two methods of authentication. But this isn’t always possible. For some of them you need to create your own account (Bloomberg, Forrester) and for others we need to type in the password ourselves! This is by far the worst method and we try to avoid it as much as we can!

In conclusion, we know that the chosen method isn’t always ideal, but we try to improve it. Whenever we negotiate with a provider, we ask them to make the best effort to implement a user-friendly and “school-friendly” method of authentication. This might be a good time to remind you that the databases subscribed by the library are meant to help you with your academic education and are NOT meant to provide free data to the company you are working for during your internships. It’s harder for us to negotiate good resources when the providers are afraid that students in internships will share their privileges with their employers. Therefore, in a nutshell, whatever the authentication method is, don’t share your password with anyone!

Advice on your online identity and sharing your work

Create an online identity

Maybe your career just started or you can be a well-established researcher, in either case, building an online presence is important.

In a recent blog post, Clarivate Analytics gives some advices on how to build your online researcher identity and increase your impact. Some of them are no-brainers like using your institution’s resources or presenting your work at conferences. Clarivate Analytics also encourage you to create and update your online profile. Publons, a Clarivate Analytics website, but other solutions exist, like Google Scholar; already use by some HEC Researchers.

Another advice is to create a unique identifier; we wrote an article on creating an ORCID. Other solutions are possible, like the Web of Science ResearcherID.

Sharing your work

After creating your online profile and personal identifier, the best way to be visible is to make your work easily accessible and citable. We encourage you to upload your research paper on SSRN, where HEC have a collection. We will be glad to help you if you have any questions regarding SSRN.

A good thing with SSRN: you can now share your data when you upload your paper. Your data will be citable and store on Mendeley. We wrote an article about it here.

Finally, social networks are also important and a great tool to share your work and connect with other researcher.

Do you want to know more?

Read the Clarivate Analytics blog post here.

This blog gives also advices on how to create and maintain your Google Scholar profile.

La Tresse : a book to share


La tresse  is a short book that you’ll enjoy reading. We were immediately captivated by the story of the fate of these three beautiful women.

In these pages, we see how these strong women rejected what life imposed on them and had the courage to follow their convictions.

Smila the Indian girl, Guila the Sicilian and Sahra the Canadian : their destinies finally mixed together and intermingled like the wicks of a braid.

A book to share.

VOD: a world full of promise

Vod or “médiathèque numérique” allows you to select and watch video contents whenever you choose.

A substantial and various selection of contents such as movies, kids shows, cartoons, tv series, documentaries of the Arte and Univers Ciné collections are provided in original versions but with the relevant subtitles.

You can access to 3 contents/ month and stream or download them for 48 hours on your laptop, smartphone or tablet.

How to access? It’s very simple: on the library website, choose “médiatheque numérique” on the databases tab.

Fill in the registration form. Your request will be validated by the library team.

Wait for your confirmation e-mail and then enjoy!

Upload your research paper’s data on Mendeley.

You can now upload your research data on Mendeley when you submit your paper on SSRN.

SSRN is a research paper repository specializing in social sciences, including economics, law, corporate governance, and humanities. It is a great way to share your work and read the work of other researchers.

Mendeley started as a reference manager and is now also an academic social network and a research data repository through Mendeley Data. SSRN and Mendeley are both edited by Elsevier.

Recently, SSRN added a feature to help researchers like you upload their research data on Mendeley while they post their research paper. Then, the data will be linked to the published paper and be citable so the researcher can receive credit if another researcher uses it.

If you are interested in this new feature, next time you log in, while you post your paper on SSRN, just click on Upload research data and you will be redirected to Mendeley Data.

It is a good opportunity to capitalize on your work. Letting other researchers accessyour data can help them validate your research and increase your own confidence in your work.

More information here:

A mother in the need for truth

Mildred , a woman whose daughter was raped and killed a few months before the film begins, isfurious and frustrated by the police’s results. As the latter have no leads, she decides to rent three abandoned billboards near her home and posts the following messages on them : RAPED WHILE DYING », « AND STILL NO ARRESTS » et « HOW COME, CHIEF WILLOUGHBY? »

These billboards will generate a chain of events.

Inspired from a true story, it is a successful film, however poignant but also full of tenderness, humor and humanity.

Frances McDormand, also an actress and a lead part in  the wondefull film Fargo in 1996, literally shines in front of the camera as a courageous mother

We warmly recommend this film.

Elon Musk: Exploring the Life of an Explorer…

Elon Reeve Musk is a famous technology entrepreneur, investor, and engineer. He is the founder or co-founder of Tesla, SpaceX, PayPal, HyperLoop, Solarcity.

The book tells the story of the entrepreneur from his childhood in South Africa until his last troubles with the American Stock Exchange in 2019.

Elon Reeve Musk was born in 1971 in Pretoria, South Africa. At the age of 17, in 1989, Musk moved to Canada, avoiding the compulsory South African military service. After  studying physics and economics in Pennsylvania, he headed to Stanford University in California to pursue a PhD in energy physics. However, his move coincided with the democratization of Internet, which led him to drop out of Standford just after two days to launch with his brother his first company, Zip2 Corporation,  using the money they raised from a small group of angel investors.

This was the beginning of an amazing career.

Zip2 was a web software company. It developed and marketed an Internet city guide for the newspaper publishing industry. Compaq eventually acquired Zip2 for several hundreds of millions.

In March 1999, Musk co-founded, an online financial services and e-mail payment company, with US$10 million from the sale of Zip2. One year later, the company merged with Confinity, which had a money-transfer service called PayPal.

Fond of space exploration, he tried to regain public interest on this matter in 2001, imagining a way to build a miniature and experimental greenhouse on Mars. He developed the Company Space Exploration Technologies or SpaceX, an aerospace manufacturer and space transportation services company.

Never short of ideas, his goals include reducing global warming through sustainable energy production and consumption and reducing the risk of human extinction by establishing a human colony on Mars.

You can find this book under the calling number 4-1731 VAN.

Passport – Competitors Analytics : a company-centric view of the market

Competitor Analytics is a tool that provides a company-centric view of the FMCG (Fast-Moving Consumer Goods) universe using cross-country standardized data from 20 products and services industries.

Competitor Analytics links all companies together into a quantifiable competitive landscape, using the market overlap measure, which lets you examine how a company actions such as acquisitions have changed its competitive distance to its competitors.

You can use Competitor Analytics for :

A quick overview of a company

    • Evaluate retail sales footprint by country / category.  Identify sales growth drivers in different markets. Find key brands in different country/category  combinations.
    • Understand how companies position themselves in growth vs. mature  markets.

Examine a competitive landscape

    • Confirm which companies are top competitors.
    • Discover companies that are becoming strategically closer together or
      drifting further apart.
    • See how past actions such as acquisitions and market entries have changed
      the competitive landscape.

See the world from a competitor’s perspective

    • In which markets competitors are winning and losing.
    • Tracking the companies that some competitors are actively tracking and compare that to another competitor point of view.

Evaluation of potential mergers and acquisitions

    • Identify gaps in a company’s country and category coverage.
    • Evaluate the complementary fit of companies.
    • Understand anti-competition regulatory challenges that might result from
      an M&A opportunity (combined market share above 50% or significant HHI

Access Passport GMID and start to use Competitor Analytis :

Presentation of Béatrice Leroy, the Training Manager of the Learning Center

Learning to make researches : the key to successfull studies

Every Year HEC Learning Center takes subscriptions to many high value databases specialized in economy, such as Orbis, Xerfi, Business Source Complete, Financial Times. They contain articles, market reports, company reports which are not reachable for free through Google. HEC Learning Center gives its public the opportunity to connect those information from anywhere at any time.

As responsible for the Learning Center databases promotion, first I identify the economic information needs of our students, whoever they are : MSC, MS, M1, MBA, EMBA, Exed…Then, thanks to the program managers, I plan at the best moment  presentations in lecturer to show students the most relevant information to their needs (looking for an internship, writing a thesis, working on a company case). Thus, they discover how to access precious market reports, articles, company reports both online and off-campus. After these presentations, students or participants are supposed to know precisely the Learning Center Offer, and to be autonomous in their research. They all receive a customized guide. Of course, I tell them to feel free to come and see the Library Learning Center team to receive help at any time.

Most of the time, students are surprised by the wealth of our resources. And when they ask how to do to continue to access those data after their academic year, I suggest them to subscribe to another HEC program …

Béatrice Leroy, the Training Manager of the Learning Center

Dawsonera: your online access to thousands of e-books

Have you heard of Dawsonera? This database is your main entrance to the Learning Center’s e-book collection.

Connect to the Dawson platform with your HEC  credentials  and get access to a collection of more than 4,000 digital books in management sciences and social sciences, on-site or remotely. You can search  books by format (PDF or ePub), date, category (social sciences, information, technology, sciences…), publisher and language.

You decide, we purchase!

Some e-books appear in green in your list of results. These books have been permanently purchased by the library. You can read them online or download them.

big data mba

The e-books in purple have been selected by the Learning Center team. Should we purchase them? It is up to you! You can either request the book or previsualize the first 50 pages for 5 minutes. When the time is over, if you still want to read it, the book is automatically purchased by the library!

machine learning paradigms

Get access to even more e-books on Dawsonera with the Paris-Saclay Collection

Besides the Learning Center’s selection, Dawsonera also gives you access to the Paris-Saclay Collection, which is a collection of 4,000 digital books chosen by the COMUE Paris-Saclay in computer science, philosophy, social sciences, language, science, technology and arts.

You can download or stream the e-books on site, or remotely using the « Connect with Shibboleth » option.