CE10 - Industrie et usine du futur : Homme, organisation, technologies

The 3D simulation of the professional gesture as an axiological negotiation on human work. Sociology of body activity measurement in the hyper-industrial context. – Me3dAx

Submission summary

The project Me3dAx aims to study the production process of 3D simulations of professional gestures. In particular, it aspires to understand the different stages that make it possible to capture and model the human body’s intervention in a cycle of production of value. In this perspective, the project will be interested in the ways in which plural points of view on the “value” (social, cultural, economic, professional) of the human gesture can be digitally inscribed. This research starts from the hypothesis that the measurements, produced to record and to model the technical gesture, translate, often implicitly, axiological points of view on bodily engagement in human work. In this perspective, Me3dAx also proposes to design an organizational tool making it possible to make explicit this plurality of judgments in order to put the question of the value of human work at the heart of digital simulation projects. This approach is part of a broader reflection on the social and technical conditions allowing the development of a socio-political debate on the value of human work. In this sense, this reflection aims to think about the role of industrial innovation in defining the place of man in the production activity. 3D simulation is presented by speeches on “the industry of the future” as an instrument to put humans “at the heart of the industrial process”. Me3dAx aims to better conceptualize this ambition by showing that beyond the alternative between conservation and substitution of “human labor”, industry appears as an opportunity to re-evaluate the intervention of the human body in the production cycle. By adopting a pragmatist approach to measuring bodily activity, the project Me3dAx will mainly mobilize concepts from the sociology and history of techniques as well as from the “new” economic sociology. This research will choose a symmetrical posture inspired by the actor-network theory, by analyzing the way in which technical devices and social actors are mobilized to achieve the translation of the professional gesture. This survey will focus on the study of three simulation programs, carried out in very different gesture evaluation contexts (artisanal, sports, industrial metallurgy), and carried out by the same team of biomechanical engineers. To grasp the back and forth between axiological judgments on gestures and the technical translations by which these gestures are translated into biomechanical measures, the project will mobilize three complementary methodological approach. The project therefore proposes to conduct at the same time a historical research on the evolution of measures of bodily commitments in the three contexts, a laboratory ethnography on the concrete production practices of simulation and a sociological survey on the evaluations of internal technical gestures from the different participating social groups in the production cycle. In this perspective, the team made up around the sociologist who coordinates the research will be strongly multidisciplinary by bringing together a historian, a sociologist, an anthropologist, a philosopher, two biomechanical engineers and an ergonomist. Ultimately, the Me3dAx project intends to describe the technical and social choices by which the multiple meanings attributed to bodily engagement are translated into a set of biomechanical measures. This research aims to produce theoretical and organizational support for the design of capture programs in different production contexts.

Project coordination

Marco Saraceno (Performance, Santé, Métrologie, Société)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


PSMS Performance, Santé, Métrologie, Société

Help of the ANR 204,915 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: December 2021 - 42 Months

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