Publications

Histoire, Europe et relations internationales

Volume 1 – n° 3 (2023)

Transfert et transmission. Journée doctorale Sirice 2021

Valentine Aldebert: L’Union européenne des postes et des télécommunications (1942-1945) : Quelle(s) transmission(s) des savoirs techniques en temps de guerre ?

Avec l’arrêt des travaux de l’Union internationale des télécommunications (UIT) au début de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, les débats autour de la standardisation des télécommunications semblent au point mort. Contre toute attente, c’est au cours de la guerre que naît l’Union européenne des Postes et des Télécommunications (UEPT), permettant la poursuite des discussions et un recentrage des études autour de l’espace européen. L’UEPT est cependant influencée par le contexte politique et militaire de l’époque. Il est donc pertinent de s’interroger sur la nature de la transmission des savoirs techniques pendant la guerre dans un secteur aussi stratégique que les télécommunications.

English: With the ITU’s (International Telecommunication Union) work halted at the start of the Second World War, discussions on telecommunications standardization seemed to come to a standstill. Against all odds, it was during the war that the European Postal and Telecommunications Union (UEPT) was born, enabling discussions to continue and studies to be refocused on the European area. The EPTU was nevertheless influenced by the political and military context of the time. It is therefore relevant to consider the nature of the transmission of technical knowledge during the war in a sector as strategic as telecommunications.

Sabrina Proschmann: Les agents postaux de la Reichspost à l’étranger avant et pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Organiser les transferts pour dominer

Une partie des structures de l’Union européenne des postes et des télécommunications créées en octobre 1942 durant la guerre était constituée par les attachés postaux de la Reichspost à l’étranger dont la mission était d’assurer le transfert d’informations, de connaissances et de matériel entre l’Allemagne et d’autres administrations postales européennes. Les échanges étaient hiérarchisés en faveur de l’Allemagne et visaient à consolider l’influence du pays national-socialiste en Europe.

English: Part of the structure of the European Postal and Telecommunications Union, created in October 1942 at the height of the war, was made up of postal agents of the Reichspost abroad, whose mission was to ensure the transfer of information, knowledge and material between Germany and other European postal administrations. Exchanges were prioritized in favor of Germany and aimed to consolidate the influence of the National Socialist country in Europe.

Valentine Aldebert, Christian Henrich- Franke, Léonard Laborie, Sabrina Proschmann, Guido Thiemeyer (eds.), Conflict in cooperation. Crossborder Infrastructures in Europe Facing the Second World War

Historische Dimensionen Europäischer Integration, Volume 34, Nomos, 2022

Guerres mondiales et conflits contemporains

Volume 3 – N°275 (2019)

Une Europe asymétrique : les idéologies pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale

Valentine Aldebert et Sabrina Proschmann: L’Union Européenne des Postes et des Télécommunications (1942-1945). Un ensemble d’asymétries complexes

Notre étude se centre sur l’Union européenne des Postes et des Télécommunications née lors d’un congrès à Vienne en octobre 1942. Le but de cette union était une homogénéisation au niveau européen des pratiques et des tarifs des PTT. Cependant, le traitement inégal des membres du congrès et le rejet par l’administration allemande de la participation (pourtant essentielle) d’administrations européennes des PTT, témoignent des limites de cette union. En effet, elle est le reflet de l’idée d’Europe asymétrique. Toutefois, elle rompt avec les asymétries traditionnelles présentes en Europe nazie, tout en renouvelant l’approche que nous avons du technocratisme scientifique : européenne et non pas intercontinentale. En nous centrant sur les fondements idéologiques des asymétries présentes dans cette union, et sur les rapports pays occupants/pays occupés, nous chercherons à mettre en lumière ce qu’est la « coopération » technique en temps de guerre.

English: Our study focuses on the European Post and Telecommunications Union founded at a congress in Vienna in October 1942. The aim of this union was to harmonise PTT practices and tariffs at European level. However, the unequal treatment shown to members and Nazi Germany’s rejection of the (essential) participation of European PTT administrations prove the limitations of this union. Indeed, it reveals an asymmetric Europe. At the same time, it breaks with traditional asymmetries current in Nazi-dominated Europe, while renewing our approach to scientific technocratism : European and not global. By focusing on the ideological foundations of the asymmetries present in this union and on the relations between the occupying and occupied countries, we will seek to highlight what technical “cooperation” means in times of war.

Contemporary European History 

Volume 27 – Special Issue 2 – May 2018

Continuity and Change in European Cooperation during the Twentieth Century

Christian Henrich-Franke: Comparing Cultures of Expert Regulation: Governing Cross-Border Infrastructures (pp. 280-300)

Abstract: Infrastructures in the transport and communication sectors were high on the agenda of supranational European integration after 1945. Nevertheless, European cooperation continued on well-trodden paths. New European organisations were established with an institutional design that built on established governance structures from the interwar period or even earlier. This article seeks to explore continuities in the governance of cross-border infrastructures from the interwar to the post-war period. It argues that transnational expert communities and cultures of standardisation emerged, which the infrastructure experts were keen to protect and persist. The article compares transport and communication to isolate common patterns and differences.

Léonard Laborie: Enveloping Europe: Plans and Practices in Postal Governance, 1929–1959 (pp. 301-325)

Abstract: This article sets out why and how plans to build Europe on mail, both commercially (rates) and symbolically (stamps), were discussed from the end of the 1920s and have failed up to today. The European Conference of Postal and Telecommunication Administrations (CEPT) was created during the intense phase of European integration in the 1950s. In the 1980s it was a key resource for the European Commission for building a Single Market in the telecommunication sector. As this article argues, however, the CEPT did not emerge from the multiple plans for postal integration. Rather, it was a new envelope hiding governance practices inherited from the nineteenth century.

Comparativ

Vol 28 No.1 (2018)

Entstehung und Entwicklung transnationaler Kommunikationsräume in Europa zu Kriegszeiten, 1914-1945

Christian Henrich-Franke, Leonard Laborie: European Union for and by Communication Networks: Continuities and Discontinuities during the Second World War
(p.82-100)

The Second World War stopped most of the activities of the international infrastructure organisations like the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) or the Universal Postal Union (UPU), which had managed the transnational flows of communication since the mid-19th century. Nevertheless, this did not stop international postal and telecommunication cooperation completely. In 1942 the German PTT administration convened a European postal and telecommunication congress in Vienna that pursued the work done by the ITU and UPU. They founded a ‘European Postal and Telecommunication Union’ (EPTU) in accordance with the ITU and UPU conventions. This article argues that the EPTU was an important step toward the Europeanization of intra-European connections. Within EPTU ideas as well as norms, values and practices of postal and telecommunication governance in view of uniting Europe continued (nearly unbroken) from the interwar to the post Second World War era.

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