Revue Internationale de Psychosociologie et de Gestion des Comportements Organisationnels (RIPCO)
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Volume XXVI • Issue 64 • 2020 (Already published)
Guest editor(s): Cédric, Poivret ; Luc, Marco
History of managerial thinking
Astonishingly, the History of Management Thinking remains unexplored in France. Despite a certain number of interesting works, no scientific board has tackled the issue of management sciences, as well as older and sub-subjects (sociology and psychosociology of labor, ergonomics, engineering…), within them. Our article is linked to this month’s RIPCO (International Journal of Psychosociology and Organizational Behavior) issue theme. It aims at starting to develop such works and increase their institutional visibility. Many research ideas can be put forward, without ever hoping to tackle each and every subject, given the vastness of the subject. The books which were published during the Ancien Regime, intended for merchants, whether they were more general or about commercial, geographical mathematics, dealt with management thinking. This theme was present in technical books for miners or railway workers in the 19th Century. In particular, it was present in those concerning banking, as with Courcelle-Seneuil’s book (1852), and is now exposed in a great number of research papers and training sessions under the name, “banking management.” The variety of journals which were created during the last century dealing with management, whether they were academic or taking a more practical turn, (in other words, the journals under study could be “Mon Bureau”, [a journal which disappeared and got taken over by l’Organisation dans les années 30], or “Management” [ a 1995 professional journal], but could also be modern scientific journals like la Revue Française de gestion , Gérer et Comprendre, Finance-Contrôle-Stratégie ….). The birth of marketing thinking in France started with thinking about advertising at the beginning of the 20th Century, the 1940s and 1950s market studies, and the first occurrence of the expression “marketing” at the beginning of the 1960s. We can also mention the birth of computing thinking by the 60s and 70s. This is the moment when management sciences arose, and how they drew and dealt with the frontier regarding the other scientific domains, tackling subjects like work and company. The creation of “sub-communities” or specializations (within the community of scholars in management sciences, a community which only first appeared in France around forty years ago) is also considered.
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Issue content
Title :  The history of managerial thought: throwbacks and precisions on a process of research terms and visibility… at last?
Author(s) :  Cédric, Poiret ; Luc, Marco
Abstract :  In this introduction, we try to clarify and refine some points about the History of Managerial Thought, its methodology, its epistemology, the different types of works to which it can give birth, and the contribution it can make to the epistemology of Management Science. We explain, in particular, that the history of business is not the history of managerial thought, although there is an obvious kinship between these two fields. Also, we argue that the use of the term ‘History of Managerial Thought’, and call for the constitution of a research community to advance on this subject which still remains, in its very great majority, to explore.
Keywords:  history of managerial thought, methodology of history of managerial thought, epistemology of history of managerial thought, epistemological contribution of history of managerial thought to management sciences
Pages :  5-19
Type :  Editorial
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Title :  Information technology and management
Author(s) :  Cédric, Neumann
Abstract :  In the second half of the 1960s, hardware manufacturers, software, and computing service companies as well as IT delegations propose more and more training to computer scientists as a solution to face the issues encountered by companies and administrative services during their computerization. However, this claim remains ambiguous because it also contains, in parallel, a criticism of the autonomous aspect of universities’ programs. The dominant posture of IT in university training was accused of producing unusable computer scientists company-wise. It would translate the university’s incapacity to cope with social and economic evolutions. In this context, public training policies to IT aim to reduce the share of basic IT in teaching for the benefit of management information technology. As management applications take 80% of computer uses, training in IT management should take up to 80% of students’ enrollment by the end of the 1970s.
Keywords:  information technology, management, higher education, software, applied research
Pages :  23-46
Type :  Research paper
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Title :  The French managers and the organization of the financial economics in the 1970s and the 1980s
Author(s) :  Franck, Jovanovic
Abstract :  This article analyzes a very little-studied aspect of the history of management thought in France: the role of French managers in the organization of financial economics during the 1970s and 1980s. While the foundations of the financial economics were laid by American economists in the 1960s and 1970s, these ideas were introduced in France between the second half of the 1970s and the early 1980s mainly by French managers trained in Canada and the United States. This article describes how these managers introduced and structured this field in France, both scientifically and practically. In addition to an analysis of publications and archives, this article is based on information collected through a survey and interviews with the main French actors of this period. It also uses an original database constructed from working papers of the Centre d’Enseignement Supérieur des Affaires, and original statistical data, compiled from documents of the European Institute for Advanced Studies in Management. This article presents three main results. First, French managers have benefited from a favorable context for introducing research in financial economics. Second, at that time the contributions of French managers consisted mainly of applying American mainstream models of market finance to French data thanks to the creation of computer databases. Third, French managers had largely contributed to the performativity of financial economics in France.
Keywords:  history of management thought in France, history of financial economics, FNEGE, primes, sciences of management
Pages :  47-65
Type :  Research paper
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Title :  Understanding the rise and disappearance of the concept of “Ethique des affaires”: a historical perspective
Author(s) :  Yoann, Bazin ; Emmanuelle, Garbe
Abstract :  This article traces the genealogy of the concept of “Ethique des affaires” in the French management field. Based on the observation of a temporal and conceptual gap between the Anglo-Saxon version of “Business ethics” and its European counterpart, this paper aims at analyzing, with a historical perspective, the causes of these differences. We first retrace the emergence of the concept of “Ethique des affaires”. We then, examine the causes and consequences of its decline in the pedagogical, professional, and academic spheres. Finally, as a conclusion, we question the disappearance of the concept of “Ethique des affaires” and link it to the rise of another concept: corporate social responsibility.
Keywords:  business ethics, companies, corporate social responsibility, ethics, historical perspective
Pages :  67-102
Type :  Research paper
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Title :  The corporate university at the crossroads of the managerial school of thought in organizations
Author(s) :  Xavier, Philippe ; Thomas, Sorreda
Abstract :  This article focuses on the origins and emergence of corporate universities, particularly in the French context. Organizational training structures, often based on prestigious academic partnerships, corporate universities constitute a legacy of multiple movements related to the structuring of managerial training in France. At the crossroads of these influences, they then constitute a particular means of disseminating managerial thinking within organizations, While maintaining a specificity stemming from the intermediate position, between university and company, that their denomination suggests. Through a historical and documentary approach, this article presents the history of corporate universities and analyzes the specificity of the dissemination of managerial ideas through corporate universities. These peculiarities, specific to corporate universities, constitute a legacy as much as a means of disseminating managerial thinking.
Keywords:  managerial school of thought, corporate university, executive education, knowledge management, academic knowledge
Pages :  103- 121
Type :  Research paper
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Title :  From the Republic of Letters to double-blind peer-review: an archeology of academic journals.
Author(s) :  Yoann, Bazin ; Laurent, Magne
Abstract :  The work of an academic is today mainly structured by the publication of academic articles in scientific journals. These are usually managed by an editorial team that guarantees a double-blind peer-review process. If there obviously are variations and innovations, the organization of academic work is rather institutionalized and more and more globalized. We offer an archeology of these journals by identifying the moments of the emergence of their key characteristics: learned societies and periodic publications in the 17th century, editorial policies and reading committees in the 18th, and finally the double-blind peer-review process that imposes itself during the second half of the 20th century. To do so, part of our historical analysis will be focused on the two publications that are considered to be the matrixes of modern journals: the French Journal des Sçavans and the British Philosophical Transactions. This article offers to problematize these key characteristics by replacing them in the contexts where they allowed to solve problems and issues, while they were at the same time being debated and negotiated. Our aim is to contribute to the history of managerial thought, but also, through this approach highly influenced by the work of Michel Foucault, to contribute to a critique (in the philosophical sense) of organization and management sciences, as an academic field and as a profession.
Keywords:  academic journal, academic association, editorial committee, double-blind peer-review, archeology
Pages :  123-144
Type :  Research paper
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Title :  Toward the emergence of the notion of competence: nature and function of “capacity” in the Saint-Simonian industrialism.
Author(s) :  Baptiste, Rappin
Abstract :  From strategic management to human resource management, the notion of competence is today pervasive in most sectors of the science of organization; moreover, we note that many authors associate such a triumph to the hegemony of neoliberalism and link it to the concept of “human capital” theorized by Gary Becker. The present work hopes to bring the lack of such an approach to light, and establish that competence is the successor of the concept of “capacity” which finds itself at the heart of Saint-Simon’s industrialist doctrine. More precisely, the social and political project of industrialism, that relies on the notion of capacity, opposed it to private property and statutory inequalities; from that point of view, the capacity, that embraces all productive attitudes and communicational behaviors, is the pivotal point of new social construction, of a new political order, that the following sentence, tirelessly repeated by Saint-Simonian authors, admirably summarizes: “To each one according to his capacity, to each capacity according to its work”. Last, we deduce a better understanding of anthropological and geopolitical stakes of competence management: indeed, this set of practices and apparatus, that appears to be technically neutral from the ideological point of view seems to us as supporting the American project of civilization
Keywords:  competence, capacity, Saint-Simon, industrialism, management
Pages :  145- 164
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  The management of emergency in organizations? The answers provided by Napoleon Bonaparte
Author(s) :  Laurent, Meriade ; Jean-Marc, Sales
Abstract :  In the literature, emergency management has been mainly built to respond to disasters. It is based on the definition and implementation of a specific organization to respond to a crisis or disaster situation. As emergency becomes a permanent management situation in organizations, it can be interesting to think about ways of thinking and organizing to deal with it on an ongoing basis. As there are for specific crisis situations, is it possible to describe a (permanent) management of emergency applicable in organizations? To answer this research question, since military management is often characterized by a permanent level of urgency, especially in times of war, we try to approach, by a historical method, the modes of organization and administration that Napoleon Bonaparte adopted during his main military campaigns. The description and managerial analysis of the major events of these campaigns allow us to highlight a certain coherence and continuity of management, applied by Napoleon which can inspire managers in their daily emergency management
Keywords:  management emergency, emergency management, managerial thinking, historical method, Napoleon
Pages :  165- 196
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Interview with Professor Armand Hatchuel: A history of management sciences: from its forgotten roots to its emerging findings.
Author(s) :  Cédric, Poivret
Abstract :  The text you will find here is the result of the rewriting of an interview, around the history of management sciences, that Professor Hatchuel – Professor of management sciences and design theory, at MinesParisTech / PSL university, Member of the Academy of Technologies granted on April 11, 2019. The interview had lasted a little more than two hours and gave rise to a rough transcript, by us, on a Word document, which represented 25 pages. This interview was relatively informal: An interview guide had been prepared but we did not refer to it that much. We preferred to react on Armand Hatchuel’s proposals rather than force him to enter in labels that were irrelevant. Four themes emerged from the analysis of the interview: the concept of “management”, the history of “managerial” thinking and the authors who played a role in it, the pathologies and current breakthroughs in management sciences and in conclusion some elements of the history of the CGS of the Ecole des Mines de Paris (today, MinesParisTech / PSL University). The statements, as transcribed above, were validated by Armand Hatchuel. The footnotes are mainly from Cédric Poivret, but Armand Hatchuel modified some.
Keywords:  history and epistemology of management sciences, History of the Centre de Gestion Scientifique
Pages :  198-216
Type :  Interview
URL Cairn:
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