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Portrait of Ingrid Mazzilli

Human Resources Management is the responsibility of companies, how does the territory enrich this approach?

Companies are increasingly opening up to their local ecosystem and consider the territory as a place to forge partnership relations with economic, public and associative actors, to get involved in local development projects, to secure professional careers, to contribute inter-company social dialogue, participate in territorial GPEC systems, or even implement a CSR policy. Public players in territorial development are also encouraged to develop territorial projects with economic players. Researchers in management sciences are interested in these dynamics within such territorial projects and ask themselves: how to develop better secure mobility outside the company? How to work on the employability of employees only within an organization without asking the question of a GPEC extended to its interfaces? How to preserve the fundamental principles of HRM and CSR by seeking social cohesion only in the company, without going beyond its borders? How to integrate all the stakeholders of the company without thinking of governance systems extended to the territory? These are some of the questions posed by the Thematic Research Group of the AGRH "Territories, Networks and Innovations", which has brought together since 2009 some forty French-speaking researchers in human resources management.

Alongside key skills and transversal skills, you are referring to territorial skills, what may be their interests for local businesses?

The concept of “territorial jurisdiction”, relatively recent, is still emerging. Two approaches coexist today. In the first case, the territorial competence is considered as the result of the “combination of geographically close resources allowing the territory to display a competitive specialization” (Defélix and Mazzilli, 2009). This is the capacity of a territory to produce a particular good or service, which is specific to it. It thus allows the territory to stand out and develop according to the logic of attractiveness and territorial marketing. A second approach to territorial jurisdiction indicates that territorial jurisdiction is less linked to specific know-how than to the capacity of territorial actors to coordinate within the framework of collaborative projects. In this second case, the singular structuring of social relations is considered as the source of territorial competence which makes it possible to trigger the mechanisms of organized collective action. Companies of course participate in the emergence of territorial competence through their involvement in territorial networks but also benefit in return from these dynamics through a spillover effect (new projects, new collaborations and partnerships, etc.).

At the crossroads between the territory and businesses, what are the most interesting research angles currently being explored?

For the past fifteen years, research on territorial approaches to human resources management has been very interested in collaborative projects, in order to identify the sources of cooperation, but also to grasp its limits. Today, several avenues are to be pursued, such as investigating more particularly the way in which companies and HR managers envisage the link to the territory, in particular through the implementation of innovation and CSR policies; also, the question of HR-oriented territorial diagnosis, although it has been tested for several years by actors of territorial development, has been little documented by academic research. Finally, the question of assessing the results of collaborative territorial projects remains a central question.

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