Behavior, organizations and policy evaluation (ECOr)

The ECOr department is unique in France, combining behavioral, organizational and economic sciences. It aims to comprehend the behavior of individuals and organizations in a complex and changing environment. Understanding and modeling individual and collective behaviors enables us to assess the proper functioning of public and private policies in terms of societal objectives (health, employment, poverty, innovation, growth, well-being, etc.).

© Francesco - Fotolia © Francesco - Fotolia

Researchers at ECOr study human behavior in a broad sense, integrating different levels of analysis:

  • fundamental behavior processes,
  • interactions between individuals,
  • interaction between individuals and organizations/institutions,
  • coordination and management processes.

From a normative perspective, researchers also question the proper functioning of public policies (tax and benefit policies, legal policies, incentive policies, etc.), by studying how individuals and organizations react to them. This then allows researchers to assess whether societal objectives are being met (healthcare, return to employment, escape from poverty, access to training, well-being, cultural enrichment, electoral behavior, social and environmental behavior of companies, innovation and risk-taking behavior, etc.).

Management and leadership 

Director:  Olivier Bargain

Deputy director: Julien Cusin


This department is structured around two focus points:

Focus 1: Behavioral and organizational science

Researchers study human behavior in a broad sense, integrating different levels of analysis:

  • fundamental processes underlying the basic functions of behavior (e.g. language production and comprehension, memory function, perception, learning, performance, regulation) and social behavior (e.g. cooperative decision-making and strategies, judgment and discriminatory behavior, pro-environmental and pro-social behavior, etc.).
  • interactions between individuals as behavioral insights; interactions examined in regards to networks and peer effects (in education, the working world, innovation, consumption, lifestyles, health, environmental behavior, etc.) as well as in coordination and management processes.
  • interaction between the individual (at school, at work, as a consumer, citizen-voter, etc.) and institutions/organizations (innovations in the working world, new consumption patterns, nudges and incentives, etc.); study of transitions, risks and changes (environmental, societal, legal) and coping behaviors.

Focus 2: Evaluation, public action and global transitions

This field deals with the assessment of the institutional and legal context in which individuals and organizations operate, based on the understanding of behaviors as studied in the first point: concrete institutions (public policies: laws, regulations, etc.), organizations (private initiatives: companies, NGOs, etc.) and abstract institutions (currency, customs, norms, etc.). The field also focuses on the impact of these institutions and policies on aggregate behavior/measures (employment, inequality, well-being, etc.).

There are various levels of analysis:                

  • evaluation of regional or national public policies (health, education, training, culture, tax and benefits, labor market and pensions, environment, energy, sustainable development, etc.)
  • evaluation of private initiatives or the impact of institutions on private companies and organizations (training, consumption patterns, innovation and R&D, competition and market regulation, legal and fiscal standards for companies, circular economy and the impact of globalization, productivity, etc.)
  • evaluation of global transitions and the supranational framework (climate policies and agreements, European policies on education, employment, integration and solidarity, financial and fiscal regulation at the international level, trade agreements and international trade, international aid and development policies, infrastructure and transport, monetary policy, etc.)

Key figures

  • 4 hosting teams
  • 365 members (of which 135 are doctoral students)
  • 2 doctoral schools

Component structures of the department

This department is composed of 6 units, including 4 primary units and 2 secondary units.

Primary units

Secondary units

  • Research Group in Theoretical and Applied Economics (GREThA - UMR CNRS 5113)
  • RUDII team - Representations, practices, developments and information engineering at the  Integration: from material to systems laboratory (IMS - UMR 5218 - CNRS - IPB - Bordeaux Sciences Agro - EPHE - Inserm - ST Microelectronics - Total - Thales – PSA)


Component council

The council is composed of 21 members, including 12 lecturer-researchers and researchers, 4 support staff, 4 doctoral and post-doctoral students and 1 external member.

Scientific council

The Scientific council is composed of 4 researchers (1 per unit, put forth by the director of each unit and voted in the laboratory council).


"Financing” learning platform (managed by Y. Jégourel)

Doctoral schools


  • Institute of Vine and Wine Science (ISVV)
  • Bordeaux School of Public Health (ISPED)

Updated on 07/05/2020


Adelyne Garcia
Administrative assistant

Research booklet

Discover our multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and international research!


Behavioral sciences, organizational sciences, cognitive sciences, psychology, economics, management, educational sciences, science and technology of physical activities and sports, languages and cultures, information and communication sciences, anthropology, ethology, history, sociology.