Le Siècle (think tank)

Le Siècle is an elite bi-partisan social club in France that meets once a month for dinner at the French Automobile Club in Paris's Place de la Concorde.[1][2][3] Membership in Le Siècle "symbolizes the French nomenklatura" and includes France's top intellectuals, politicians, chief executives, journalists, and artists; since the 1970s, one-third to half of all French government ministers were members of Le Siècle, regardless of political affiliation or party membership.[4]

HistoryEdit

Le Siècle was founded in 1944 by Georges Bérard-Quélin, a journalist and Freemason.[3] The small group of the 1940s and 1950s eventually expanded to include major politicians across the political spectrum, from François Mitterrand, who was close associate of Bérard-Quélin, to Georges Pompidou via Pierre Mendès France.[5] When a similar think tank called the Saint-Simon Foundation dissolved in 1999, many of its former members joined Le Siècle.[6] Former CFDT Secretary General Nicole Notat has served as president of Le Siècle; not only is she the first woman to serve as president, she was also the first woman to lead a trade union in France.[1]

MembershipEdit

Membership in Le Siècle "symbolizes the French nomenklatura" and includes France's top intellectuals, politicians, chief executives, journalists, and artists.[4] In fact, between one-third and a half of all French government ministers were members of Le Siècle since the 1970s, regardless of political affiliation or party membership. That percentage peaked at 72% under Prime Minister Édouard Balladur (1993–95).[7] French journalist and writer Emmanuel Ratier wrote in 1996 that the club's membership controls 90% of French GDP.[8]

According to a 2011 article in Le Monde diplomatique, the members of Le Siècle are predominantly:[9]

  • Male (85%)
  • Over 55 years old (80%)
  • The sons of captains of industry, high-ranking public servants, or senior liberal professionals (55%)
  • Graduates of Institute of Political Studies (50%) and École nationale d'administration (40%)
  • From families with highly qualified engineers and links to significant business interests (25%)

There are 580 members, subject to change every year, and 160 guests.[3]

List of membersEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h AFP, '"Le Siècle": Nicole Notat présidente', in Le Figaro, 12/11/2010 [1]
  2. ^ a b c Rachida Dati, Fille de M'Barek et de Fatim-Zhora: Ministre de la Justice, Paris: XO Editions, 2011, pp. 197-199
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af Frédéric Saliba, "Le pouvoir à la table du Siècle", Stratégies, issue 1365, April 14, 2005, p. 49.
  4. ^ a b Ferguson, Niall (2017). The Square and the Tower: Networks and Power, from the Freemasons to Facebook. Penguin Press. p. 319. ISBN 978-0735222915.
  5. ^ Dicko, Saidatou (2017). Réseaux de relations sociales, connexions et élitisme: Quels enjeux pour les organisations?. Editions JFD. p. 50. ISBN 9782924651254.
  6. ^ Windle, Joel A. (2016). Making Sense of School Choice: Politics, Policies, and Practice under Conditions of Cultural Diversity. Springer. p. 123. ISBN 9781137483539. Retrieved 27 January 2018.
  7. ^ Brigitte Granville; Jaume Martorell Cruz; Martha Prevezer (2015). "Elites, Thickets and Institutions: French Resistance Versus German Adaptation to Economic Change, 1945-2015" (PDF). CGR Working Paper No. 63. Queen Mary University of London: Centre for Globalization Research: 6. Retrieved 27 January 2018.
  8. ^ Ratier, Emmanuel (1996). Au coeur du pouvoir : Enquête sur le club le plus puissant de France. Paris: Facta. ISBN 9782950831835. Retrieved 27 January 2018.
  9. ^ François Denord; Paul Lagneau-Ymonet; Sylvain Thine (February 2011). "Aux dîners du Siècle, l'élite du pouvoir se restaure". Le Monde diplomatique. pp. 22–23. Retrieved 27 January 2018.

External linksEdit