The PEPITE award, dedicated to students and young graduates with a status of student-entrepreneurs, is a symbol of support from the Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation for the promotion of the spirit of entrepreneurship in France. For the 5th edition of this award, 381 candidates tried their luck. 145 regional laureates were then preselected to compete before a national jury that awarded 53 laureates, including 3 Grand Prize.

What objectives?

The goal is to support company creation projects from students and/or young graduates by awarding the best innovative projects from 30 student centres for innovation, transfer and entrepreneurship (PEPITE, “Pôles étudiants pour l’innovation, le transfert et l’entrepreneuriat” in French) distributed all over the French territory by helping higher education institutions, economic players and association players work together.

What projects?

77% of projects presented are the result of teamwork and are included in the category of technological projects. But non-technological projects are definitely gaining momentum (45%, against 28% in 2017). Candidates thus presented more and more social innovations in the field of everyday life. For example, among the laureates, 3 Grand Prix filed projects in the fields of artificial intelligence and conservation of the environment.

Who are the laureates?

  • 60% of laureates are students and 40% are young graduates;
  • in average, they are 24 years old, and 1 candidate out of 3 is a woman;
  • 22% have a doctorate (PhD) or Master’s degree;
  • 45% are engineers, 15% are graduates from business schools.


To know more:

-  Press release from the Ministry of Higher Education and Research:


- PEPITE website: