What is the future of decentralisation ?

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Edmond HERVÉ

Senator; former government minister

Seminar Entrepreneurs, towns and regions | Wednesday March 7, 2012 - 10h - 12h

Edmond Hervé is a member of the senate committee in charge of regions which have a certain degree of autonomy and decentralisation. He wrote a report assessing decentralisation. Having read hundreds of reports, he examined the history of decentralisation, and criss-crossed France in order to interview two hundred people (notably MPs) from seventeen French départements. All those interviewed said they had been significantly affected by these changes which have resulted in a huge number of reforms. The direct relationship between the measures taken and their effects are not always well understood. This has led to paradoxical situations, such as seeing elected representatives – themselves fervent defenders of decentralisation – complaining about the lack of state intervention. They would like the state to be less aloof, more strategic, and stronger. In fact, the state’s shortcomings tend to relegate it to a role of censor, standards’ watchdog, and fervent mathematician rather than the valued helper it has been in the past. This is why it is useful to carry out this detailed look as a basis for future adjustments.

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