Charbonnages de France and French society

Philippe de Ladoucette

On 19 April 1946, the National Assembly passed a law for nationalizing the mineral fuel industry by a vote of 516 against only 31. Charbonnages de France, the French Coal Board, had a promising future. This was the beginning of the end of the long history of French coal.

Restructuring industry in contemporary France: Tools and methods

Noël Huret

In the early 1980s, several local labor markets historically rooted in “big industry” were, sometimes quite suddenly, caught up in the throes of a deep restructuring. The most serious situations arose in localities in France that had, often for several generations, specialized in a single industry or industrial activity: coal, iron or potash mines; steel and metallurgy; or shipyards and dockyards.

The State and the transforming of industry

Frédérique Pallez and Franck Aggeri

Following the restructuring of French industries in decline or distress, diffuse processes of permanent adaptation have been occurring in all companies, redundancy schemes for dismissals being but one aspect thereof. Meanwhile, the State’s actions have taken on a new form. In the “old-style’” restructuring of industries such as iron and steel, textiles or shipyards, the State was often a shareholder; and it intervened heavily in plans for both the industry and work force. At present, its scope of action has shrunk as new levels of regulation (Europe, WTO, regions…) have emerged and as labor law increasingly serves as a form of regulation.

The role of trouble-shooter

Michel Bove

For thirty years now, France has undergone a massive restructuring of industry and adjustments in many sectors. All this might have had an educational value and instilled in the population an aptitude for taking for granted these inevitable changes in the economy. But this is not at all so. Current generations still perceive change as a trauma and do not tolerate it any better than preceding ones.

Better prevent than cure: For a “culture of responsible change” — an international view of transformations in industry

Sergio Arzeni

Change is a constant factor in the lives of persons and organizations. Accepting, even anticipating, it helps us cope positively with it. If companies adopt responsible behavior for managing changes in industry, they can transform troublesome situations into opportunities for becoming more competitive and, too, making social progress. The experiences presented herein show how important it is to control “creative destruction”.

Transformations in industry, a fundamental social challenge

Jean-Marc Mohr

The expression “transformations in industry” evokes positive or negative trends, a set of changes imposed by the present internationalized economy, which is turned toward new technologies but is increasingly restrained by regulations or norms related to sustainable development. The challenge is to cope with this transformation socially so as to respect the dignity of all those involved.

Reclassifications in changing labor markets : From victim to actor

Xavier Tedeschi

Local labor markets affected by plans for “saving jobs” have nearly always been forced to look for alternatives to traditional industries. But the emergence of new poles of skills and qualifications allows, at best, for rehiring between15% to 20% of the wage-earners who fell victim to plans for saving jobs. Once an industrial activity declines in a locality, the former organization of work and occupational qualifications is also condemned. For this reason, restructuring industry always entails retraining.

Moulinex’s “Redynamization Convention” in Lower Normandy: Contents and lessons

Éric Tardieu and Didier Cultiaux

Moulinex was, for French authorities in general and the State in particular, an exceptional case owing to its scope and its impact on a whole region (Lower Normandy) but also due to the firm’s total failure. The company forced the State to take charge of everything, of plans both for dismissed workers and for economic revitalization. The assessment after two years of the “Redynamization Convention” and the lessons to draw for the future…

Territorial development and the restructuring of industry: Approaches, actors, costs, financing, outcome

Claude Trink

Shutting down industrial plants always sets off a crisis in the localities affected. A strategy of territorial development with the aim of recreating jobs must respond to this loss of confidence in the future. What approaches are to be implemented ? What actors are to intervene with what economic means and for what results ? The experience acquired by Charbonnages de France, first in coal mining aleas and then elsewhere, provides answers.

Sodiv and the restructuring of the Mines de Potasse d’Alsace

Gilbert Decker

Create jobs there where stockholders are massively destroying them, this is the challenge for a firm in charge of redynamisation. Highly integrated in the local economy, the company has to play on what is positive so as to help new activities emerge in new firms and thus create new jobs. Funds are necessary, as well as a methodical, pragmatic approach for putting them in operation and successfully redeveloping the local area and its population’s skills. Sodiv and the Mines de Potasse d’Alsace illustrate how to do this.

Is it possible to provide training for creating a corporation?

Stéphane Boiteux and Jean-Claude Duriez

Training prepares a person for a social function. Training in creation of corporations has to prepare future creators to understand the social functions of their creations. To design training programs of this sort, questions must be raised about their contents.

Call centers at the core of a relational society

Philippe Baldin and Frédéric Jurain

Call centers have thrived in recent years and are now a significant source of jobs. What has underlain this trend ? Will it continue in the coming years ? Do these new jobs have prospects ? What does tomorrow hold for this new economic activity ? A few points of information will help us better understand this poorly known market.

The France that is not going to fail

Grégoire Postel-Vinay

This issue of Annales des Mines inquires into the momentum, both territorial and sectorial, in restructuring industry. The announcement of a bill of law on scientific research suggests it is time to take stock and ask what must be done so that the transformation of industry, instead of being synonymous with a slow decline, offers a challenge.


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