Louis Armand

Louis Armand

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For the writer and critical theorist, see Louis Armand (writer)
Louis Armand (writer)
Louis Armand is a writer, visual artist and critical theorist. Born in Sydney, he has lived in Prague since 1994 where he is director of the Centre for Critical and Cultural Theory at the Department of Anglophone Literatures and Culture, Charles University.-Works:His poems have appeared in...

Louis Armand (17 January 1905 – 30 August 1971) was a French engineer
Engineering is the discipline, art, skill and profession of acquiring and applying scientific, mathematical, economic, social, and practical knowledge, in order to design and build structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes that safely realize improvements to the lives of...

 who managed several public companies and had a significant role during World War II as an officer in the Resistance
French Resistance
The French Resistance is the name used to denote the collection of French resistance movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and against the collaborationist Vichy régime during World War II...

. He was the first chair of Euratom and was elected to the Académie française
Académie française
L'Académie française , also called the French Academy, is the pre-eminent French learned body on matters pertaining to the French language. The Académie was officially established in 1635 by Cardinal Richelieu, the chief minister to King Louis XIII. Suppressed in 1793 during the French Revolution,...

 in 1963.

Early years

Armand was born at Cruseilles
Cruseilles is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France.-Notable people:Notable as the birth place of Louis Armand director of the SNCF, Euratom and a resistance fighter.-References:*...

, Haute-Savoie, and studied in Annecy
Annecy is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France.It lies on the northern tip of Lake Annecy , 35 kilometres south of Geneva.-Administration:...

 and Lyon
Lyon , is a city in east-central France in the Rhône-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Lyon is located at from Paris, from Marseille, from Geneva, from Turin, and from Barcelona. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais....

, at the Lycée du Parc
Lycée du Parc
The Lycée du Parc is a public secondary school located in the sixth arrondissement of Lyon, France. Its name comes from the Parc de la Tête d'Or, one of Europe's largest urban parks, which is situated nearby....

. He graduated second in his class from the École Polytechnique
École Polytechnique
The École Polytechnique is a state-run institution of higher education and research in Palaiseau, Essonne, France, near Paris. Polytechnique is renowned for its four year undergraduate/graduate Master's program...

 (class of 1924) then joined the Corps des Mines and was major from École des Mines. In 1928 married Genevieve Gazel.


He joined the Compagnie du chemin de fer Paris à Lyon et à la Méditerranée
Chemins de fer de Paris à Lyon et à la Méditerranée
The Compagnie des chemins de fer de Paris à Lyon et à la Méditerranée was a French railway company ....

 (PLM) in 1934, transferring to the Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Français (SNCF) when the PLM was nationalised in 1938. In 1940–1941 he invented a method for preventing the calcification, furring up, of engine boilers called the Traitement Integral Armand (TIA) water treatment process for steam locomotive
Steam locomotive
A steam locomotive is a railway locomotive that produces its power through a steam engine. These locomotives are fueled by burning some combustible material, usually coal, wood or oil, to produce steam in a boiler, which drives the steam engine...


During the Second World War, he organized and led the Resistance
French Resistance
The French Resistance is the name used to denote the collection of French resistance movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and against the collaborationist Vichy régime during World War II...

 group named Résistance-Fer
Résistance-Fer was a French Resistance group against the German occupation of France during the Second World War.This specific movement was essentially composed of French railway workers from the SNCF and played an active role in the French Resistance....

 from February 1943 onwards. He was arrested by the Gestapo
The Gestapo was the official secret police of Nazi Germany. Beginning on 20 April 1934, it was under the administration of the SS leader Heinrich Himmler in his position as Chief of German Police...

 on 25 June 1944. He was liberated from jail during the liberation of Paris and was decorated with the Croix de la Liberation.

In 1949, Armand was named the general manager of the SNCF
The SNCF , is France's national state-owned railway company. SNCF operates the country's national rail services, including the TGV, France's high-speed rail network...

 and created the Société du tunnel sous la Manche in 1957. During this time, he pushed for the electrification of the rail system using DC voltage.

From 1958 to 1959, he co-managed the European atomic energy commission with Conor Quilligan (Euratom) having inspired its creation.

In the late 1960s, after May 1968 in Paris, Louis Armand was instrumental in helping Christian LeClercq and the Junior Chamber of Commerce of Brussels to start a new European thinktank and membership organization: "L'Entreprise de Demain - Forum for Tomorrow".

This non-profit and non political organization was soon going to leave the Junior Chamber of Commerce to become independent. To help that organization, Louis Armand, as a visionary global thinker, provided access to some of the best "global leaders" in international business, world politics, academia and scientific research who addressed the Forum, under the Royal personal guidance of audouin I of Belgium].

"L'Entreprise de Demain - Forum for Tomorrow" soon developed chapters in Denmark
Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...

, France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

 and the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, allowing some of the most brilliant minds of the time to address corporate executives and share their views about the future of the world.

Louis Armand wrote a book on "l'Entreprise de Demain" in 1970, and the history of the organization was also published in the "Que Sais-Je?" collection.
In 1971, Louis Armand successfully pushed to have the word “creativity” included in the French dictionary.

Armand died in Villers-sur-Mer
-Places of interest:Villers-sur-Mer is known for the large topiary dinosaurs facing the sea from the garden of the office of tourism. In certain years, a baby dinosaur is added to the garden....

, at 66.

Without the visionary inspiration and guidance of Louis Armand, "L'Entreprise de Demain - Forum for Tomorrow" could never have been formed. The worldwide organization lasted for well over 20 years. Its founder and international president, Christian LeClercq, died in July 2011.

External links