2023-2024 / GRHO0001-4

Strategic Human Resources Management


45h Th

Number of credits

 Master of Science (MSc) in Computer Science and Engineering5 crédits 
 Master of Science (MSc) in Computer Science5 crédits 
 Master in law (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in law (120 ECTS) (Econonomic and social law, minor in management)5 crédits 
 Bachelor in economics and business management5 crédits 
 Bachelor in business engineering5 crédits 
 Master in business engineering (120 ECTS) (Industrial Business Engineering)5 crédits 
 Extra courses intended for exchange students (Erasmus, ...)5 crédits 
 Bachelor in human and social sciences6 crédits 
 Bachelor in human and social sciences (New programme)5 crédits 
 Master in human resources management (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in human resources management (120 ECTS)4 crédits 
 Master in human resources management (120 ECTS) (Management)4 crédits 
 Master in human resources management (120 ECTS) (Management)5 crédits 
 Extra courses intended for exchange students (Erasmus, ...) (Faculty of social sciences)6 crédits 
 Master in psychology (120 ECTS)4 crédits 
 Master in psychology (120 ECTS)3 crédits 


François Pichault

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

The course is focused on the strategic dimension of HRM policies developed in modern organizations. It logically follows the course Introduction à la théorie des organisations, which must be viewed as a prerequisite. Face to the universalistic and normative beliefs presented in numerous HRM textbooks belonging to the mainstream, mostly from the USA, the course aims at introducing students to the diversity of HRM practices. It tends to explain such a diversity by referring to two main approaches : the contingent theory (which highlights the multiple contextual influences on HRM practices) and the political theory (which puts the emphasis on power games around such practices). Finally, it combines these two approaches and shows their implications in terms of change management.

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

ILO-1 : To strengthen knowledge and understanding of management disciplines and its legal, policy and social context.  

ILO-2 : Gaining the knowledge and understanding of one of the proposed fields of concentration (HRM)
ILO-4 : To acquire the capacity to research autonomously and methodically the information needed to solve a complex, transversal management problem.   

This course contributes to the learning outcomes II.1, II.2, V.1, V.2, VI.1, VI.2, VI.3, VII.1, VII.2, VII.3, VII.4, VII.5, VII.6 of the MSc in computer science and engineering.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

  • theoretical synthesis to read
  • podcasts on theory
  • written case studies to prepare
  • online quiz on video case studies
  • participation to 3 Q&A meetings, in small groups, on the different parts of the course that will be indicated

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Blended learning

Additional information:

The course follows the "reverse" pedagogy principle. Students are invited to learn by themselves, via the various resources at their disposal.

Recommended or required readings

Course support:
PICHAULT F. and NIZET J., Les pratiques de gestion des ressources humaines. Conventions, contextes et jeux d'acteurs, Paris, Seuil, 2013, col. "Points/Economie" Supports de présentation Powerpoint disponibles sur le site http://lola.hec.ulg.ac.be.
Recommended readings:
LAWLER, E.E. & BOUDREAU, J.W. (2018), Human Resource Excellence: An Assessment of Strategies and Trends, Stanford (California), Stanford University Press.
MINTZBERG, H. (1983), Power in and around Organisations, Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
VERBURG, R.M., HARTOG, D. & KOOPMAN, P. L. (2007), "Configurations of Human Resource Management Practices: a Model and Test of Internal Fit", International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol.18, n°2, pp.184-208.

Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

written exam ( multiple-choice questionnaire )

Additional information:

During the semester: formative self-evaluation via online case studies (quiz) and participation to Q&A meetings destined to prepare the final exam
- At the end of the semester (summative evaluation): individual analysis of one or several transversal case studies (100%)  

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

Supplementary informations concerning this course (organization, supports, evaluation, etc.) are available on the website: http://lola.hec.uliege.be


François Pichault
Full Professor
HEC-Liège, Université de Liège
Directeur du LENTIC
14 rue Louvrex, 4000 Liège/ N1d

Tel: +32 4 366 30 70
web: www.lentic.be

mail: F.Pichault@uliege.be

Margaux PERE
Tel.: +32 4 366 30 70
E-Mail: margaux.pere@uliege.be

Association of one or more MOOCs