Press releases

Inserm inaugurates its History Committee

31 Jan 2017 | By Inserm (Newsroom) | Institutional and special event

réunion histoire

Photo credit: Jean-Marie Heidinger/Inserm

Row 1, left to right: Dominique Donnet-Kamel, Suzy Mouchet, Martine Bungener, Muriel Le Roux, Hélène Chambefort, Florence Hachez-Leroy
Row 2, left to right: Arnaud Benedetti, Pascal Griset, Yves Levy, André Syrota, Yves Agid, Pierre Corvol

Inserm announces the creation of its History Committee, reporting directly to its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Professor Yves Lévy. This Committee will be chaired by Professor Pascal Griset (Director of the Institute for Communication Sciences [ISCC], Paris-Sorbonne). This Committee is one of the actions conducted by the Institute in recent decades to reconstitute, preserve and promote its heritage, and as a continuation of the events that marked the 50th anniversary of the Institute in 2014.

A primary objective of the Committee will be to encourage and conduct work on the history of Inserm and of France’s biological, medical and health research in its national and international context, in order to raise the profile of Inserm’s activity within the French research system. The Committee will also be involved in enriching the Histoire de l’Inserm website (, and, in conjunction with university, scientific, cultural and socioeconomic circles, will promote or organise seminars, symposia, round-tables and any other events associated with Inserm’s history, and, more broadly, the history of medical and health research. Finally, this committee intends to provide a link with institutions working in these similar and/or complementary fields, and to design projects in partnership with them.

“Apart from the statutory objectives, history is an excellent lever for consolidating the Institute’s identity and visibility, and by the same token for strengthening the sense of belonging in a setting that is obviously much more complex than when the Institute was created,” says Yves Lévy, Chairman and CEO of Inserm, who is inaugurating this committee today. Knowing the history of our institute and of our disciplines should enable both ourselves and the youngest among us to understand how science is produced. I believe that this will contribute essential added value to our epistemological reflection on research,” adds Mr Lévy.

The Committee members

Nine members appointed by the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Inserm for a renewable period of 4 years

  • The Chairman: Pascal Griset, a professor at Paris-Sorbonne University, co-author of the work Au Coeur du Vivant (The Heart of the Living), written on the occasion of Inserm’s 50th anniversary, and a specialist in the history of innovation and the major scientific institutions.
  • four renowned figures whose actions have contributed to the development of excellence at Inserm: Yves Agid,Martine Bungener, Pierre Corvol and André Syrota
  • four renowned figures, specialists in issues affecting science and society/Inserm: Florence Hachez-Leroy, Jean-Paul Gaudillière, Muriel Le Roux and Cécile Meadel

Ex-officio members:

  • Thierry Damerval, Deputy Director-General of Inserm
  • Arnaud Benedetti, Head of Inserm’s Department of Scientific Information and Communication, and Associate Professor at Paris-Sorbonne
  • Suzy Mouchet, Manager of the Histoire de l’Inserm website
  • Hélène Chambefort, Manager of Inserm’s archives
  • Dominique Donnet-Kamel, former Manager of the Patient Associations Mission, and strongly involved in relations between Science and Society

To find out more