2nd INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS ON BUSINESS HISTORY
PARIS, 15-16 June 2023 - CALL FOR PAPERS
CRISES, TRANSITIONS AND RESILIENCIES:
NEW VIEWS ON COMPANIES IN FRANCE AND IN THE FRENCH SPEAKING WORLD
In France and in the French-speaking world, companies, like their counterparts in the rest of the world, have been experiencing crises and profound transformations in recent years. The Covid-19 pandemic, which has developed in a lightning fashion since the beginning of 2019, has given rise, as it does after every crisis, to numerous analyses on the changes in the economic world. These questions have been rekindled and sharpened, particularly in Europe, by the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, which, in particular, is dealing serious blows to the world trade system and, through it, to the globalization of the years 2000-2010. As always, many commentators have wondered and continue to wonder whether the 'world after' will be the same as before.
Crises, conflicts or wars put companies to the test. They force them to transform themselves and test their resilience. But they also engage the state. The Keynesian resonances of the measures taken in recent times in response to the Covid-19 crisis have contributed to questioning the economic or political models that were previously dominant. They remind us that the state, understood in the broadest sense, is and remains a major player in times of crisis. With hindsight, how can we not think of other periods in history? The cyclical economic crises of the 19th century - that of 1846-47, for example, or the long depression of 1883-1896 - or those of the 20th century - 1921-1922, 1926-27, and even more so the 'Great Depression' of the 1930s, or the recurring crises of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, or, closer to home, the shocks of 2007-2009. How can we not also mention the increasingly industrialized military conflicts that led to total war and then to the nuclear age and indirect conflicts between past, present and emerging superpowers? These crises are followed by periods of reconstruction, restructuring and more or less brutal transformations. These questions are not new. Historians, as well as researchers from other disciplines, have already studied these periods and the processes of adaptation, reconversion or mutation of national or regional economies, companies and their respective actors. While some sectors of the economy have resisted or even benefited from the crises, others have suffered to the point of sometimes disappearing to the benefit of foreign actors. New structures, new balances and new ways of thinking or doing things have often emerged from these periods.
What can we learn from History here? The difficulties, or even the collapse of certain sectors constitute a first source of understanding of current events. The historical distance allows us to look back at the concepts, to identify the permanences and contingencies and to reveal the temporalities of these major phenomena. This leads us to question their possible novelty or modernity, and allows us to know what they can generate in terms of 'transitions' or 'resilience'... If there are to be ruptures, where, when, how and why are they likely to appear in the historical dimension? Should we not rather speak of the acceleration of older trends? How do these phenomena question the intellectual frameworks, tools and methods of French business history? Answering these questions is the objective of the second Paris Congress.
In a spirit of intellectual and disciplinary openness, the aim is to bring together as many researchers as possible from different traditions of the humanities. It is sufficient if they place their work in a historical perspective or if they address questions related to the historical dynamics of companies. In addition to collaborations and confrontations between French and foreign teachers and researchers, the objective of this congress is also to encourage exchanges between the academic world and the actors of economic life, both public and private, who are interested in the history of companies, their positioning and functioning, their performance, their structures and strategies, and, more broadly, that of organisations and all those who live and work in them. Finally, the congress logically sets itself the objective of offering, with regard to these objects, the opportunity to reflect on the way in which the history of companies is being made and written today in France or in the French-speaking world.
In line with the preceding questionnaires, three major axes emerge:
-First, the strengths and weaknesses of French and foreign companies in a crisis environment will be assessed and/or measured.
-Secondly, the practices and behaviours of French companies in the face of the challenge of change and adaptation should be examined.
-Finally, the question arises as to whether or not French business history has the tools and concepts to think about transition and resilience today?
In the context of the centenary of Gustave Eiffel's death, the congress will offer a significant place to works and communications that will address the issues and themes presented in this call for proposals. Papers, sessions or contributions that mobilize sources, history or products related to Eiffel's career, the history of his inventions and his companies will be welcome.
Please note that the Congress closing Reception will be held on the 1st floor of the Eiffel Tower, which will be privatized for the occasion.
In principle, the Congress will be held in person; only the round tables and plenary sessions can be followed by videoconference. Financial support may be granted upon request, with priority given to young researchers. They will focus on collective or "eco-responsible" modes of transport.
Proposals could be sent in French or in English.
Please note that to submit a proposal, you must first open an account on SciencesConf site : https://www.sciencesconf.org/user/createaccount
One may find attached the main deadlines:
Full thematic sessions:
* Opening: 23 September 2022: Submit a proposal
* New deadline for proposals: January 4th, 2023
As a reminder, a session proposal should include a Chair Person, a Discussant and 3 presentations.
Individual communication :
* Opening: 15 October 2022
* New deadline for proposals: January 9th, 2023
Doctoral School :
* Opening of applications: 23 September 2022: Apply for doctoral school
* New Deadline for applications: January, 11th, 2023
* Application opening: October 28, 2022
* Deadline for applications: February, 24th, 2023
You will find other elements on the congress website:
- Website: https://businesshist23.sciencesconf.org/
- Website: https://businesshist23.sciencesconf.org/