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He was daring and driven by a profound belief that France had all the qualities to conquer the challenges of the future and to be at the forefront of science and technology.
The former president Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, who knew him from the Ecole Polytechnique and briefly appointed him Minister for Reform in 1974, said: He was probably the most brilliant man of our generation.
After leaving politics, he nevertheless remained an adviser - including to the socialist president François Mitterrand.
In the 1980s, he began to travel regularly to the United States and, until 1995, was a regular lecturer at Carnegie Mellon University, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Ever hostile to the Gaullists, he moved to the Parti Radical, which he led from 1971 to 1979.
During the 1970s, he was MP for Nancy and president of the Lorraine region.
He spent his retirement between his home in Neuilly, near Paris, and a family house at Veulettes-sur-Mer in Normandy.
His son denied yesterday that Servan-Schreiber, who had rarely been seen in public in recent years, suffered from Alzheimer's disease. It was Ségolène Royal [the socialist presidential hopeful].
The son of Emile Servan-Schreiber, the Jewish editor of the financial newspaper Les Echos, he was born in 1924 and grew up in a conservative business milieu whose mission became to rebuild France after the Second World War.
Les anglais en furent tout naturellement les initiateurs.