A huge loss for our academic community
Par Takahiro Fujimoto, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo

I am very sad to hear that  Michel Freyssenet passed away.  A huge loss for our academic community as well.  I remember when Koichi and I were first invited to the international colloquium  in La Défense in the early 1990s and witnessed the historical moment when Michel, Robert started their enormous efforts to build the framework of productive models that can cover the world auto industry across regions and time.  GERPISA and IMVP were not in sinc with each other at that time, but Koichi, Uli Juergens and Giuseppe Volpato set up a series of assembly automation conferences  and invited both Michel and John Paul MacDuffie. 
Now we are more integrated internationally.  Finally GERPISA's next meeting is in Detroit, which I will attend.  I was in Paris (École polytechnique) last week for an international  mobility conference with Tommaso, MacDuffie, Midler, and so on, ranging from GERPISA to IMVP (now PVMI).  We then talked about Michel, of course (We never imagined his passing away next week).  All of these events started from the projects that Patrick Fridenson, Michel, and Robert Boyer started years ago.  
I remember when Koichi, Patrick, Michel, Elsie, Robert and many younger researchers like me enjoyed chatting over nice cuisine, wine, sake, and singing in Paris, Tokyo, Fukuoka, Berlin, Venice, etc.  Joining these meetings was one of the happiest moments in my life, and Michel was a founder of such fruitful and enjoyable global platform of us researchers.  
I hope that there will be many events to remember and praise Michel’s enormous contributions to GERPISA and other academic activities world wide. 
PS: Tetsuo Abo suddenly passed away on January 6.  My former HBS colleague Clay Christensen died on January 23.  January 2020 is a month of sorrow.

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