Technical creation, artistic processes and transformations of modes of cognition (dir. Armand Hatchuel, Pascal Le Masson, Benoît Weil, MinesParisTech),

This project aims to study the current dramatic transformations of the modes of planning, creation and cognition which are redefining the links between technical, artistic and cognitive creation. The project which is expected to forge collaborations with SHS (ENS and EHESS) focuses on three questions: How can we describe on the level of a well-articulated theory these new orders of creation, cognition and society? How can we identify the generational biases which impinge on these transformational trajectories: for example, why are certain potential trajectories not realized, or why don’t they develop in a fecund way? How can we build up a critique of these modes of invention and creation? What are the specific characteristics of the modes of power, of influence , or even of “ascendency” that emerge with these changes? Finally, what impact have these changes on the modes of construction of science, and therefore on the forms of legitimate knowledge in the contemporary world? Obviously, researchers from CGS MINES- Paristech cannot study these issues alone, in all the required extent. PSL provides a configuration of skills, disciplines, and activities that can approach these issues with the necessary variety of perspectives and with the ambition of new breakthroughs. In this framework, contribution of this proposal will be twofold.

From the theoretical standpoint, it has long been difficult to integrate into a single model of thought both creation and cognition. The development of design theory (C-K theory: Hatchuel A, Weil B (2009), “C-K design theory: an advanced formulation.” Research in Engineering Design 19 (4):181-192. ) provides a model that explains their differences as much as their inevitable interdependencies. For a decade, this theory has repeatedly confirmed its interpretative power and fertility for new explorations. It offers a set of general and original operators (K-dependencies, K-reorderings, etc ..) which allow to escape the usual descriptors of creation and cognition, prisoners to old arts and techniques. It provides an analytical device that can explore contemporary emergent modes of cognitive and artistic creation, their determinants and their special schemas of innovation. K-theory has already been shown its aptness for the study of contemporary design techniques, scientific activities but also new paradigms of art exhibitions and more generally of modes of activation of artistic outputs. Design theory also opens the possibility of a « generic epistemology » (see Schmid and Hatchuel 2014) which, going beyond the transdisciplinary question, suggests the existence of an inter-epistemic genesis of creative innovation, situated between fiction and rationality, between « chimerization » and exploration. One can thus rigorously clarify the rationality of « living metaphors » (Ricoeur) or the limits of the concept of analogy in the formation of creative processes. This conceptual contribution is not enough on its own, but it allows to escape the usual conceptual difficulties that hamper the study of the process of emergence, creation or categorical

The second contribution of the proposal is a historical one. On specific issues (history of R & D activities, history of design, history of theories of design, history of engineering programs) CGS researchers have already made important contributions recognized by historians.(see for example Le Masson P, Weil B (2010), « La conception innovante comme mode d’extension et de régénération de la conception réglée : les expériences oubliées aux origines des bureaux d’études », Entreprises et histoire 58 (1):51-73.). The context of CCS is an important opportunity to extend the historical and genealogical approaches which, by introducing a socio-political perspective, constitute an important factor of renewal of the studies on creation and cognition. Therefore one of our first goals is to integrate researchers from the domain of social sciences (EHESS, ENS) into our team to strengthen the historical dimension of our investigation.


RAPPORT SCIENTIFIQUE : Regime surcontemporainfinal PSL version CCS docx (2)

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