The Institute develops research on labour, employment, training programmes and innovation in the social sciences and humanities. A specific thematic axis is focused on the analysis of third sector organisations (Economie sociale). The LEST is well recognised in the field of pluridisciplinary research and international comparative works. The institute is engaged in several network and partnerships both at national and international levels that increase its visibility and contribute to its collective scientific dynamics.
Today, the LEST includes more than forty researchers or lecturer researchers in sociology, economics, political science and management and about ten staff members and research technicians. The LEST strongly benefits from the presence of a large technician and administration staff that is engaged with the functioning of the institute.
Since 2011, the LEST is a member of the Laboratoire d’Excellence, LabexMed, driven by the Maison Méditerranéenne des Sciences de l’Homme (MMSH), which associates 15 mixed units of researches of the Aix-Marseille University.
In addition, the LEST is a member of two doctoral schools of the University (Economic Sciences and Management and Spaces, Cultures and Societies). In addition, the researchers and lecturer-researchers of the institute participate actively in two Master Programmes of the Aix-Marseille University: “Sociology” and “Human Resources and Responsible Management of organisations.