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Governing risks through doubt. A pragmatist approach of the technical dialogue

​Jérémy Eydieux has defended his thesis on 13th September 2017 in Nantes.

Document type > *Mémoire/HDR/Thesis

Keywords >

Research Unit > IRSN/PSN-SRDS/SFOHREX/LSHS

Authors > EYDIEUX Jérémy

Publication Date > 13/09/2017

Summary

Since the 1970s, large organisations' governance is subjected to external control, materialised by auditing relationships. This is the case of nuclear risks
governance of nuclear operators, which in France is controlled by the technical dialogue related to safety demonstrations. This thesis aims at identifying how the technical dialogue can articulate anticipation and resilience strategies for risk management, which current literature cannot clarify. We propose a pragmatist approach, based on notions of belief and valuation. Our inquiry on the technical dialogue is based on documents collection, then on a narrative analysis of dialogue processes and of the demonstration and evaluation
texts. To track resilience in them, we do a methodological detour by studying heavy handling, an activity organised in "strained resilience". We did an
ethnographic study of this activity, and a situation analysis. In the technical dialogue, we found 8 kinds of works involved in the dialogue animation and
documents production. We identify 7 factors of heavy handling's reliability. Comparing the two fields, we show that, in the technical dialogue, anticipation / resilience articulation can be made by keeping an absence or by introducing some elements related to work activities. Our results invite to think anticipation / resilience articulation as a convergence between doubts produced by actors of resilience and of anticipation, and to think auditing relationships as managerial devices elaborating subtle beliefs by producing new doubts.
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