Conclusion

One of the current main challenges of industrial and innovation policies is evaluating their impact. This examination is in line with the recurrent concern of reducing public spending in order to achieve budgetary savings. This is a very old concern, inherent in all forms of public action, but its modern version can be traced back to the experience of the Rationalization of Budgetary Choices (Rationalisation des choix budgétaires, RCB) which was introduced in 1968 and abandoned in the 1980s. This rationalization was to be achieved by monitoring the results of administrative action through cost-effectiveness studies. As Antoine Bozio (2014) points out, an equivalent objective was assigned in 2001 to the Organic Law on Finance Laws (Loi organique relative aux lois de finances, LOLF), then to what has been called, since 2007, the General Review of Public Policies (Révision générale des politiques publiques, RGPP) and, more recently, in 2012, to the Modernization of Public Action (Modernisation de l’action publique, MAP). This perpetual currency could lead to considering the evaluation as a recurring phraseology of government action:

invoked, in turn, as a tool for legitimizing public action, a means of democratizing political life, a response to socio-technical controversies, a lever for sectoral action by ministries and a vehicle for public performance, the evaluation was mobilized on a wide range of issues. The latter constitutes scenes where different groups of actors ...

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