Research Programs


Research topic: historical sociology of economic institutions.

Claire Lemercier became a CNRS research fellow in 2003 with the Institute for Early Modern and Modern History (l’Institut d’histoire moderne et contemporaine), and she then joined the CSO in 2010.
Her research looks at the institutions on the public/private border which participate in regulating the economy. She is specifically working on defining a French model of regulation based on the unique relationship between the public and private sectors.
This is the subject of her as yet unpublished work for her Habilitation, “A French model of peer review” (Un modèle français de jugement des pairs), which draws on a study of 19th century commercial courts and labor relations boards to evaluate the specificities of an official legal system wherein justice is dispensed by judges elected from the business world. She compares the French situation in this respect to that of England and the United States.

Her latest projects delve into changes in the governance of the largest French firms and the way they have recruited top managers from the 1830s to today (with Pierre François), the birth of international commercial arbitration from the 1880s to the 1960s (with Jérôme Sgard), and the supposed “depersonalization” of trade relations from the 1750s to 1850s (with Arnaud Bartolomei, Matthieu de Oliveira, and Nadège Sougy). The project entitled "Fiduciae" got a ANR young researchers in 2013.

Lecturer at Sciences Po:
"Historical Sociology of Capitalism," 2nd year lecture course.
"History and Quantification," in the History Ph.D. program.
"Written Sources," in the Sociology Ph.D. program.

Lecturer at the EHESS:
“Quantitative Methods for History and the Historian” workshop, open to students of all levels (see

Co-director of the “History” series from the Repères-La Découverte collection.

Chair of the scientific board of the Centre pour l’édition électronique ouverte (Center for open electronic publishing --

Member of the editorial boards of Histoire & Mesure, Le Mouvement social (until 2010), Genèses (from 2011), and Enterprise & Society (2009-2011).

Bronze medal from the CNRS in 2008.

Habilitation (HDR), direction of Philippe Minard, from Université Paris 8 (2012)
Ph.D. in history from the EHESS (2001).
Master’s degree (1998).
Agrégation (1997) and B.A. (1996) in History.
B.A., Sciences Po-Paris (1996).

"Elites économiques : à qui profite la financiarisation ?", Pouvoirs, 2017.

Naissance du commerce mondialisé À propos de : Francesca Trivellato, Corail contre diamants. De la Méditerranée à l’océan Indien au XVIIIe siècle, Seuil., November, 2016.

Failure Or Flexibility? Exits From Apprenticeship Training In Pre-Modern Europe, 2016.

"L'histoire économique au futur", Tracés, hors-série, p. 151-164., October 2016.

L’État vu de ses marges, August, 2016.

Beyond the personal-anonymous divide: Agency relations in powers of attorney in France, 18th-19th centuries, 2016.

Digital Paper: A Manual for Research and Writing with Library and Internet Materials, A. Abbott. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London (2014). 272 pp., Sociologie du travail, July, 2016.

"Frankreich nach 1789 – eine unmögliche Zivilgesellschaft?", Trivium, July 2016.

"Une financiarisation à la française (1979-2009). Mutations des grandes entreprises et conversion des élites", Revue française de sociologie, June 2016.

"La justice commerciale parisienne en 1865", Editions du Mécène, September, 2015.

"L’entreprise et ses actionnaires", Revue française de sociologie, September 2015.

"Une histoire sans sciences sociales ?", Annales HSS, April 2015.

Arbitrage privé international et globalisation(s), 2015.

"Ebbs and Flows of French Capitalism", Routledge, January, 2015.

"Taking time seriously. How do we deal with change in historical networks?", Transcript Verlag, 2015.

"Formal network methods in history: why and how?", Brepols Publishers, 2015.

"Naissance de l'entreprise et formes antérieures d'organisation", November, 2014.

Liens privés et positions publiques : un exemple en histoire du 19e siècle, November 2014.

"Conseillers économiques et sociaux", November, 2014.

"Travelling salesmen as agents of modernity in France (18th to 20th centuries)", Zeitschrift für Unternehmensgeschichte/Journal of Business History, November 2014.

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