225 years contributing to the administration of France

Historically, many Polytechniciens have entered the higher echelons of the civil service and many of the structural reforms implemented in the country have therefore been carried though by former students of Polytechnique. As early as 1815, Edme-François Jomard took an interest in primary education and founded the SIE (Society for Elementary Instruction). Until the end of his life, he was an ardent advocate of compulsory, free elementary education. In 1848, Auguste-François Perrinon, himself a committed abolitionist, was a member of the Commission for the Abolition of Slavery, whose work led to the permanent abolition of slavery that same year. During the Occupation, René Carmille created the SNS (National Statistics Service), which would become the INSEE in 1946, as well as the individual code number, which would become the Social Security number after the Liberation. In 1954, Maurice Lauré, Deputy Director of the Directorate-General of Taxes, created VAT - a success that would encourage many other states, in particular in the Common Market, to adopt VAT. At the end of the 1950s, Bernard Clappier, Director of External Relations at the Ministry of the Economy, took part in the creation of the European Economic Community, and then, more than twenty years later, in the introduction of the European Monetary System. In 1960, Louis Armand and Jacques Rueff, both of them graduates of Polytechnique, set to work on removing the barriers to economic expansion and submitted a report to Prime Minister Michel Debré, which has been considered as heralding the French economic ideology of the last six decades.