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This paper jointly investigates the process whereby budgeting became institutionalised between 1930 and 1960 and the attempts of the Cam-i to deinstitutionalise it since 1990. The paper focuses on the rhetoric. Paradoxically, the same arguments have been used to support the institutionalisation and the attempts to deinstitutionalise budgets. First, the turbulence of the environment supported the implementation of budgeting. Since 1990, the turbulence of the environment has generated a feeling that it should be abandoned. Secondly budgets contributed to the emancipation of managers. Since 1990, they have been deemed as rigid frameworks preventing managers from acting freely.
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