9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN19 Sociology of Professions

2009-09-05 13:30:00 2009-09-05 15:00:00 Saturday, 5 September 13:30 - 15:00 Professional Knowledge in Organizations Building I, Auditório 1

Knowledge Professions between Market professionalism and Professional Autonomy : the adequation of sociological typologies

The notion of knowledge professions refers to the professions of information technologies (phone, electronic, NTIC)(Matclup) and now to the knowledge economy. This labellization concerns the professions involved in the production of Knowledge, the circulation of knowledge, the valorization of knowledge (Stehr): education, training, translation, innovation transfert, project management.

These knowledge professions can be interpreted as market professions, incorporated inside the service relation within the struggle of intellectual property rights. So results instrumentalist tensions between market dimensions and intellectual dimensions. But these knowledge professions get autonomous ressources from education, training, from their high levels of knowledge (as culture and specialization) (Freidson). Facing market pressure, they present the ressources of cognitive capital, of reactive adaptation. Their relations with the public domain bring up also ressources of autonomy (intellectual, singular expression, cultural stylization).

To frame the configuration of the knowledge professions, different typologies can be assessed:
- a typology of Knowledge mobilization by organization forms and knowledge hierarchies
- their relations with the public domain and the specific modes of recognition (visibility, social recognition, added values).

Beside the classic typology between (global/ local; cosmopolitanism / incorporated), the sociology of professions brings up a more complex and triangle relation between market, public domain and educational resources (le nouveau triangle interpretative des professions). In this view, the discourses on professionalism are distributed between the injunctive discourses (knowledge circulation, innovation) and the self requirements for autonomous elaboration. This mixed development of the knowledge professions present an alternative to top / down expert knowledge.