Would you say

Que devrions-nous le baser sur?

(What should we base it on) or

Que devrions-nous le baser dessus?

  • It’s not relevant to your particular example (where, as mentioned in the answers, “sur” would be used with “baser” [or preferably with “fonder” as recently mentioned by Pierre-Louis]), but if the thing upon which you could/should base your theory/opinion/course of action has already been mentioned and/or is understood, I think it would be acceptable to use “dessus” or “là-dessus” with “baser” [and “fonder”] to avoid using “sur ça/cela”: e.g., “L’opinion publique se base/se fonde [souvent] sur les stéréotypes, mais est-ce que nous devrions/devons nous baser/fonder [là-]dessus [aussi]?”
    – Papa Poule
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 14:01
  • @PapaPoule le terme "nous fonder dessus" me semble étrange... Je sais pas si c'est le sujet (nous fonder) ou le futur (indirect)... j'ai l'impression qu'on ne peut pas utiliser "fonder" de cette façon... me trompe-je ?
    – Random
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 16:55
  • @Random You’re probably right. Just as I was all set to post the comment (with just “baser”) I saw Pierre-Louis’ answer re: “fonder” & I just quickly tried to add “fonder” to try to address that. Ignoring the acceptability or not of using “baser” abstractly in this context, do you have the same reservation with using “dessus” with “baser” when the “sur quoi” has already been discussed? The reflexive use of “nous baser/fonder” in my sentence was basically intended to mean “baser/fonder les notres [nos opinions]” to correspond with “l’opinon publique* (making it a D.O., I suppose).
    – Papa Poule
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 17:33
  • @PapaPoule in your sentence, "dessus" sounds natural :)
    – Random
    Commented Jun 16, 2016 at 8:30

3 Answers 3


I would personally say:

Sur quoi devrions-nous le baser?

The two phrasings you have suggested seem incorrect to me.

  • Oh yeah, I forgot about the "quoi" use. Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 7:19
  • You are right Nico.
    – Destal
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 7:35
  • Sur quoi devrions-nous nous baser ?
  • Sur quoi faudrait-il nous baser ?
  • Sur quoi faudrait-il se baser ?

Sur quoi devrions-nous [le] baser ? "le" sounds strange to me. All depends of the context where you want to use this sentence.


May I suggest to use "se fonder sur" as "se baser sur" is an Anglicism. The correct form would be

  • "sur quoi se fonder ?"

  • "sur quoi devrions-nous nous fonder ?"

  • "sur quoi devrions-nous fonder notre argumentaire ?"

  • J'ignorais cela, très intéressant. Effectivement, l'Académie condamne cette utilisation, encore aujourd'hui : academie-francaise.fr/base-sur
    – Destal
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 13:10
  • @SimonDéchamps mais hier encore... Larousse le dit courant et la BDL résume l'influence de Royer-Collard... J'ai par ailleurs cru voir Balzac et Maupassant au TLFi... Merci.
    – user3177
    Commented Jun 15, 2016 at 23:07
  • Oui, l'utilisation de "se fonder" est plus appropriée, je reprenais juste le verbe utilisé sans même y avoir songé.
    – tatactic
    Commented Jun 24, 2016 at 7:53

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