LATTS - Technologies, Territories and Societies Laboratory

Research strategy

LATTS is a multidisciplinary social science laboratory specializing in the issues of the city, territories, space, and production, today and in the past. It seeks to understand how technical production molds each of these worlds, and how technical developments contribute to their transformation.

Founded in 1985 to study the city and its networks, as well as companies and their production models, LATTS maintains a dialogue between the social sciences and the worlds of technology. At the intersection of several overlapping disciplines (spatial planning, geography, history, political science, sociology…), it seeks to contribute to public debate by taking the view that big economic and societal changes – energy transition, digital revolution – deserve to be elucidated by an effort to understand the technical infrastructures that underpin them.

It tackles research topics as varied as household energy consumption, renovation practices, organizational and employment changes in the public and private sectors, focusing on the technical objects or on the models that inspire them. Its sixty or so researchers and academics, PhD candidates, and postdoctoral fellows, contribute through action-research to scientific knowledge and the construction of tools, or by becoming involved in programs such as those of the National Research Agency.

Research positioning

For the five-year period 2015-2019, research has been organized around six axes:

Political economy of urban production (EPPUR). – The objective is to understand urban dynamics through the analysis of the production systems that conceive, fashion, fund, and maintain the urban built environment.

Infrastructure, policies and urban worlds (IPMU). – The focus of study here is the links between cities and their technical systems: water, energy, waste, telecommunications, transportation.

Digital infrastructures (InfraNum). – The object of study is the future of infrastructures in the digital era: how are infrastructures becoming digitized and, reciprocally, how digital technologies depend on material infrastructures.

Technical government of businesses and administrations (GTEA). – The objective is analyse the links between businesses and public administrations in order to understand them as organizations impacted by technical activities, the corresponding tools, and the professionals who manage them.

Knowledge, technical cultures, territories (SCT). – History is fundamental to the understanding of technical operations. The objective here is to understand technical cultures and technological pathways over the last three centuries.

Urban and environmental risks (RUE). – Combining different disciplines and approaches to these questions, the intention is to re-examine urban issues from the perspective of risks and vice versa.


Management of LATTS:
Director: Nathalie Roseau
Deputy Directors: François-Mathieu Poupeau and Alexandre Mathieu-Fritz
General Secretary: Assetou Coulibaly


► Find out more: LATTS official website