FEDE Great Witnesses

Presentation of the FEDE Great Witnesses

Luc Ferry


Former Minister of National Education, Youth and Research, intellectual involved in public affairs, philosopher specialised in Kant (and issues pertaining to education).
A literary man and writer, he is considered today as a visionary in the field of education.

A qualified philosophy lecturer, Ph.D. holder, qualified political science lecturer, he became a university professor in 1982. He gave lecturers at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques (political studies institute) in Lyon (until 1988), Caen (from 1989 to 1996) and at Paris VII University (from 1996).

After serving as Chairman of the National Curriculum Board in the Ministry of National Education, Luc Ferry was appointed in 2002 as Minister of Youth, National Education and Research. A committed minister, he strived particularly to fight illiteracy.

At the end of his office term, Luc Ferry became the Deputy Chairman of the Society Analysis Council and later joined the Economic and Social Council. He then joined the think-tank on modernisation and rebalancing of institutions, then the National Advisory Board on Ethics.

He has also published columns in prominent French news magazines such as L’Événement du Jeudi, L’Express, Le Point and Challenges. He has written numerous books, which have earned him fame and accolades, such as Political Philosophy, La Pensée 68 and The New Ecological Order – Trees, Animals and Man, translated into over 15 languages and for which he received the Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Medicis-Essai prizes.

Catherine Lalumière


President of the House of Europe of Paris.
Former minister, General Secretary of the European Council (1989 – 1994).

Catherine Lalumière, Doctor of Law, and Lecturer at University conferences, has been president of the la Maison de l’Europe de Paris (House of Europe of Paris) since 2003, and since 2008, has been president of the la Fédération Française des Maisons de l’Europe (FFME)(The French  Federation of the Houses of Europe) (FFME). She has also been vice president of the Mouvement européen international.(International European Movement) Her activities and involvement have focussed for  many years on the construction of Europe.

Involved in politics as a deputy (Member of Parliament) for the Gironde department from 1981-1989, she became known nationally when she was entered the government formed by Mauroy in 1981 following the election of François Mitterand to the presidency. She briefly held office at the Ministère de la Fonction publique (Ministry of Education and Training) before being named to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs. It was in 1984 that her career took on a European dimension when she was chosen to be Secretary of state responsible for European affairs in the government of Laurent Fabius. Notedly, whilst in this post, she signed the Schengen Accords on behalf of France in 1985.

She left the government in 1986 and then became General Secretary of the European Council in 1989, a post that she held for five years. At the end of her mandate in 1994 she was elected to serve as a European member of parliament, and in this way, found herself back in the European Parliament.  She was re-elected in 1999, and some two years later, in 2001, she was chosen for the role of vice president of the European  Parliament until 2004.

Dominique Amirault


President of the FEEF (Federation of Entrepreneurs and Companies of France).

“Today, we launch the Career and Business Observatory with the aim of establishing a platform to match companies’ needs with answers that schools can provide, and above all, for us to work collaboratively with each other – the idea this time is for companies to be further included in the schools.”

“In a company, the greatest wealth is man. Only man creates value; it’s not created by capital, technology or institutions. As such, we should work with man to develop a company’s wealth, and that’s where the school can provide support.”