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The role of Social Reformers in the Adoption of new Management Practices: The case of Budgetary Control in France, 1930-1959




  • Nicolas, BERLAND

    () (Faculté Jean Monnet)


Historically, the development of budgetary control in French businesses took place within the ideological context of the debate on organisation of the economy following the economic and political crises of the 1930s and 1940s. Budgetary control, a management practice theorised as early as the 1920s in America, was seen by many actors as one of the practices that could provide a solution to the economic and social problems facing them. In other words, its increasingly widespread adoption was not only due to the search for ever-greater efficiency, but also to a clear ideological attraction. Better business management was not the only goal: more broadly, there was a desire to change society as a whole. This article is part of the research tradition of studying accounting in its social context. The history of accounting is examined in the light of the general political and economic history of the 20th century, associating accounting practices and the capitalists institutions of a given period and country. We stress an as yet largely unexplored aspect: the role played by the critique of capitalism and the social reformers’ proposals in changing business management methods.

Suggested Citation

  • Eve, CHIAPELLO & Nicolas, BERLAND, 2003. "The role of Social Reformers in the Adoption of new Management Practices: The case of Budgetary Control in France, 1930-1959," HEC Research Papers Series 778, HEC Paris.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebg:heccah:0778

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Nicolas Berland, 1999. "À quoi sert le contrôle budgétaire?," Revue Finance Contrôle Stratégie,, vol. 2(3), pages 5-24, September.
    2. repec:dau:papers:123456789/3399 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Nicolas Berland, 2000. "Fonctions Du Controle Budgetaire Et Turbulence," Post-Print halshs-00587426, HAL.
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    More about this item


    Budgetary control; capitalism; history; adoption of management innovations; social reformers;

    JEL classification:

    • B20 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - General
    • M40 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - General

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