Companies. The proposals of the report submitted on 9 march, by Nicole Notat, president of the agency of extra-financial rating Vigeo-Eiris, and Jean-Dominique Senard, president of Michelin, on “The business, the subject of collective interest” are discussed extensively. But, beyond a simple reform, they open mainly the way to a new conception of the company.
So far, the reforms of the enterprise sought a better balance between the interests of shareholders and the rights of employees. Based on the latest research, the report Notat-Senard broadens this perspective : it proposes that a company can get out of the shackles of the limited liability company and develops its collective interest from a “purpose” or mission, enshrined in its statutes. The company could then put its creative powers in the service of a civilization responsible.
The reform projects of the company are former (Bloch-Lainé in 1967, Sudreau in 1974, lois Auroux in 1982). But, although inspired by divergent policies, they were based on a same framework of analysis : the enterprise is an engine of growth and employment, a political space where competing interests of capital and labour, a place of dialogue and negotiation set by the State. However, this conception of the company remained blind to the transformations of the collective action and the new responsibilities of the contemporary world.
The upheaval of collective action (networks, technologies, media) have rendered obsolete the traditional forms of capital and labour. The vision of the capital embodying the savings of an individual shareholder hides the reality of large investment funds current play-time with the fate of thousands of companies. For them, the limited company is not a ” collective interest “, and they have imposed a logic of profitability shareholder whose…