I am a French citizen and a graduate of Ecole Polytechnique (promotion 1954)
I joined IBM FRANCE in 1957, where I held various management positions in Systems Engineering and Marketing before being appointed Director of Systems Engineering in 1968. My main responsibility was to maintain the professional level and motivation of the SE force.
I participated on a regular basis in the development of operations plans and strategic plans, and I was called into various task forces in charge of major redirections of the worldwide IBM strategy, including charging for software and services (« unbundling ») in 1968/1969, and later the definition of a new product strategy (« Future Systems ») in 1971/1972. In particular, I managed international task forces on the management systems and education programs required in support of those redirections.
Between 1972 and 1976, I held successively the positions of Director of Systems Engineering for IBM Europe, Director of Advanced Products at IBM World Trade, Director of Technical Operations at IBM France, in charge of implementing major strategic changes such as the application of new service policies and practices in the Systems Engineering function in the Europe/Africa/Middle East area, or the redirection of Service Bureau towards teleprocessing services.
I was appointed Director of DP Education, IBM Europe in 1977. I defined and implemented a complete redirection of the IBM education policies and practices (for both customers and IBM personnel), resulting in dramatic improvements in the adequacy and quality of education and of user satisfaction.
After 1981, I held executive positions in large French computing services companies: CISI (Groupe CEA) then Telesystemes (Groupe France Télécom). In addition to assuming operational responsibilities, I participated in the strategic repositioning of the CISI Group towards the area of development services and to its restructuring into specialized subsidiaries, then to that of Telesystemes by market segments. I also negotiated and implemented various acquisitions and joint-ventures in Europe, North Africa and Brazil.
I was an officer of the French professional association of service companies (SYNTEC) from 1984 to 1987, Chairman of the Program Committee of the national “Convention Informatique”, Chairman of the Professional Environment Committee and the representative of the association to the “Direction Générale des Télécommunications”. In that capacity, I participated in the negotiation about opening of data transmission networks to third parties (« value added networks »).
That career put me at the very heart of business enterprises and of their decision and management systems. After retiring, I tried to put some order in that experience and to search the economic and management literature for explanations of the phenomena that I lived through. That research led me to discover missing items in economic theory, to look for the origins of those gaps in the history of its development, and to suggest approaches to a solution. That work generated the books and papers available on this site. It also earned me membership in the Société Française d'Economie Poitique.
I devote part of my time to the Fondation de l’Ecole Polytechnique, where I look after the economic and human education of the students.
Where to find Gérard Dréan online
B.A. BA d'économie
by Gérard Dréan
Ce livre présente les faits économiques fondamentaux à partir de constats de la vie quotidienne. Par des raisonnements simples, dans le langage de tous les jours, sans jargon mathématique ou autre, sans demander de connaissances qui dépasseraient le niveau du collège, il conduit progressivement le lecteur vers des idées plus générales qui l’aideront à comprendre les débats du moment.
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