N° 44 - Juin 1996
THE RELATION WITH SHAREHOLDERS IN A FRENCH TRANSNATIONAL FIRM
In theory, shareholders have more powers in France than in English-speaking lands. But in reality, the president of the board is a sort of monarch, who seldom feels threatened by the control shareholders exercise during their general meeting. This surprises foreigners. However the rationale of the money markets has given rise to new forms of relations between French firms and their shareholders. The Lafarge Group has headed in this direction.
TRIAL BY FACT
THE HISTORY OF IRIS, THE FACTORY OF THE FUTURE
In 1986, Renault launched IRIS, a futurological study of the automobile industry. This is the first time R&D engineers and methods engineers have worked together on a realistic project for orienting the industry. Through IRIS, Renault is going to learn to invest in both technical and organizational competence.
THE 4-DAY WEEK: UTOPIAN OR REALISTIC?
Bénédicte Vidaillet and Olivier Lluansi
The time spent working has continually decreased since the start of the industrial age. Only in the recession since the 1970s, has such a reduction come to be seen as a way to lessen unemployment. Since 1982 however, the process of reducing the time spent working has stalled despite worsening joblessness. What lurks behind this paradox? What is really at stake, for all actors, in the concrete proposal to adopt a tailor-made 4-day workweek?
UTOPIAN IDEAS WAITING TO BE TRANSLATED INTO PRACTICE
Since the early 1990s, the fight against "social exclusion" - a phrase referring to a wide range of oft dramatic personal situations - has become a full-fledged objective for public authorities. Although no miracle cure has been found, ideas abound. How to translate them into practice?
OTHER TIMES, OTHER PLACES
COURCELLE-SENEUIL, A FORGOTTEN PIONEER OF MANAGEMENT STUDIES
As a teacher who popularized bookkeeping techniques, as an advocate of free enterprise, and as a leader of the Société d'Économie Politique, Jean-Gustave Courcelle- Seneuil tirelessly wrote books and articles. Published in the mid-19th century, his Manuel des affaires remained popular till the early 20th century. It can truly be said to be the first handbook of industrial management.
HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT CONFRONTS CHANGE: FROM CONTRADICTING TALK ABOUT AN EMERGENCY TO REALITY
The way human resource management handles change sheds light on ideological positions whose pernicious effects must be exposed. Should we not propose another approach based on a firm's social reality - an approach with the objective of changing our conception and practice of human resource management?
Philippe Bezes: Reform and institutions: On The reforming organization by N. Brunsson and J.P. Olsen
Raphaël Spira: Knowledge in governmental actions: On Mythes, savoirs et décisions politiques by F. Lacasse
Hervé Laroche: The tales of ordinary reason: On La réforme du jugement by M.P. Palmarini and Les chausse-trappes de la prise de décision by J.E. Russo and P. Shoemaker
Chantal Schmitz, What future for water? On Les politiques publiques de l'eau en Europe edited by B. Barraqué
A.P. Nobre de Morais, Toward a theory of the intelligent firm? On Des savoirs en action edited by F. Charue-Duboc
PIERRE TABATONI, A PIONEER IN TEACHING MANAGEMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION
Pierre Tabatoni interviewed by Bernard Colasse and Francis Pavé
Pierre Tabatoni discovered that management was being taught in colleges in the United States. In the 1950s, he devoted himself to introducing this discipline in French universities. He helped found the Institut d'Administration des Entreprises at the University of Paris-Dauphine and the Institut Européen de Recherche et d'Études Supérieures en Management. For him, the teaching of management in higher education must develop in symbiosis with research. He has just been admitted to the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques.
IN QUEST OF THEORIES
TAYLOR, AN OBSERVER LOOKING FOR UTOPIA?
Dominique Centlivre and Benoît Journé
Everything has been said about Taylor's ideas. Their advantages and limits have been widely discussed in the sciences that study labor and the organization of work. Everyone knows (or thinks he does) these ideas, which are now part of management's heritage. But does Taylorism faithfully reflect Taylor, the man and his ideas? Going back to the sources by looking at a few original texts