Aston Inaugural: A History of Business in 9 Archives

After many years as a Prof at Aston, I am having my inaugural this October. Please join me if you can, free drinks and nibbles after!

A history of business in nine archives

Professor Stephanie Decker

 

Date
Tuesday 30 October 2018

Time
18:30 to 20:00

Location
G11, Aston University

Remarkable stories and insights linger in archives like half-written novels. Many well-known companies maintain extensive collections of their international ventures that contain rich materials about business and society. In nine archives across three continents, we’ll discover the history of international firms investing in West Africa and elsewhere, from precursors of today’s microfinance to how firms make use of their history to inspire confidence after a crisis.

18:00 – Tea and coffee in G8, Main Building
18:30 – Lecture in G11, Main Building
19:30 – Drinks, nibbles and networking in G8

Please email events@aston.ac.uk with any questions or queries.

Book your free space here.

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Business Historians at the SMS 2018

Reblogged from the Past Speaks:

The Past Speaks

A number of business historians are presenting at the Strategic Management Society conference, which is being held this week in Paris. The presence of a number of business historians at SMS in encouraging to me, as it is a sign that business historians are now increasingly participating in debates in strategy. In a sense, these business historians are building on the success of those business historians who have made inroads into the field of organization studies. Earlier this month, I got to hear Juha-Antti Lamberg and Jari Ojala, both of the University of Jyvaskyla, present an important paper on the relationship between business history and strategy.

Even though my own co-authored paper was not accepted by the SMS organizers, I would like to extend warm congratulations to the business historians mentioned here.

Monsanto’s Black Box: Technology, Strategy, and Resource Ownership and Control

Shane Hamilton, University of York
Beatrice D’Ippolito, University…

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Brexit Bonanza

Brexit and History

University of York

Thu 11 October 2018, 11:00 – 17:30

DESCRIPTION

Brexit and History Conference to inform debates about the origins and impact of Brexit. Speakers will discuss; Supply-Side Policy in the Context of Brexit (Nick Crafts); UK Public Procurement before, during and after the British membership of the EU (David Clayton & David Higgins); Standardisation, Popular Politics and Euroscepticism in Britain (Aashish Velkar); Lessons from the Past for Brexit? Britain and Commercial Negotiations with Europe in the Nineteenth century (John Davis); Did we ever really understand how the EU works? (Piers Ludlow); British Political Tradition and the Crisis of Brexit (Martin Smith); The UK and the EU in the Past and Future of Global Economic Order (Tony Heron).

Tea and coffee will be provided but please bring your own lunch; alternatively food is available to purchase on campus.

This event is sponsored by The Economic History Society and supported by the Department of History, University of York.

If you are interested, you can sign up here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/brexit-and-history-tickets-50268560618

Hyper-prolific authors

From THE:

‘Hyperprolific’ academics ‘don’t meet author criteria’ – study

Analysis shows thousands of researchers publish the equivalent of one paper every five days, but their involvement is often limited

September 14, 2018

Narratives in family business

Reblogged from The Past Speaks:

The Strategic Use of Historical Narratives in Family Business

I’m sharing a link to a fascinating new paper on how family firms use historical narratives strategically. The paper is doubly interesting to me as it intersects with my own research interests and is consistent with my observations about how the entrepreneurs in my extended family have used historical narratives in their ventures. Congratulations to Rania Labaki Ludovic Cailluet and Fabian Bernhard on this paper.

Labaki R., Bernhard F., Cailluet L. (2019) The Strategic Use of Historical Narratives in the Family Business. In: Memili E., Dibrell C. (eds) The Palgrave Handbook of Heterogeneity among Family Firms. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

Post-Doc at Hagley

Post-Doctoral Fellowship Opportunity at the Hagley Library

The NEH-Hagley Fellowship on Business, Culture, and Society supports residencies in Hagley’s Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society by scholars who have received their doctoral degrees. Recent PhD recipients as well as advanced scholars are eligible to apply. In accordance with NEH requirements, these postdoctoral fellowships are restricted to United States citizens or to foreign nationals who have been living in the United States for at least three years. These fellowships are made possible by support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Hagley is the pre-eminent research library in the United States on business and its impact on the world. It holds more than seven miles of manuscript materials, more than 300,000 published sources, and visual items in excess of 3 million. Publications drawn from our collections provide foundational knowledge for the rise and influence of big business on politics and society as well as the cultural history of modern consumer society. Documentation of the extensive international operations of firms have provided entry for scholars exploring business and business influences in all areas of the world. While historical research is the principal purpose for most scholars, its active research grant program has funded projects from many fields in the social sciences and humanities.

Two postdoctoral fellowships are available, one of four months and one for eight months. The eight-month fellowship must be taken during the September through May academic year. The fellowships provide a monthly stipend of $4,200, amounting to $33,600 for the eight-month fellowship and $16,800 for the four-month fellowship. Fellows receive complimentary lodging in the scholar’s housing on Hagley’s property for the duration of their residency, as well as office space and the full privileges of visiting scholars, including special access to Hagley’s research collections. They are expected to be in regular and continuous residence and to participate in the Center’s scholarly programs. They must devote full time to their study and may not accept teaching assignments or undertake any other major activities during their residency. Fellows may hold other major fellowships or grants during fellowship tenure, in addition to sabbaticals and supplemental grants from their own institutions, but only those that do not interfere with their residency at Hagley. Other NEH-funded grants may be held serially, but not concurrently.

Applications are due December 1 and should be sent as a .pdf file and include, in the following order:

  • A current CV
  • A 3,000-word explanation of the project and its contributions to pertinent scholarship
  • A statement of no more than 500 words explaining how residency at Hagley would advance the project, particularly the relevance of our research collections.
  • A statement indicating a preference for the four or eight month fellowship.

Applicants also should arrange for two letters of recommendation to arrive separately by the application deadline. These should sent directly to Hagley.

All applications materials, including recommendations letters, should be sent to Carol Lockman, clockman@Hagley.org and must be received by that date for the application to be considered by the selection committee. The committee will make decisions by February 1, with residency beginning as early as July 1. Questions regarding this fellowship may be sent to Carol Lockman as well.

PDW report on Gender & History as an Analytical Lens

Gender and History as an Analytical Lens for Management and Entrepreneurship Research and Practice: Some thoughts from a PDW at the 2018 BAM conference

 

On the 4th September representatives from the Feminist Library (FL) in London, Gail Chester and Magda Oldziejewska, alongside Feminist Archive North’s (FAN) Jalna Hanmer, and academics from St Andrews, Aston, Birmingham and Stirling Universities, participated in a refreshingly non-strictly-academic workshop as part of the BAM 2018 conference at Bristol’s University of the West of England. The Library, along with FAN, introduced feminist libraries and archives (FLA) in the UK and talked about some of the unique practices of these organisations.

 

The FL, having been around since 1975, the height of the Women’s Liberation Movement, has since accumulated over 7,000 books, 1,500 periodical titles and countless items of archival material and ephemera, among them innumerable titles on women in education, feminist educational practices, women in management and business. FAN archive contains a wealth of contemporary material in local, regional, national and international collections donated by individuals and organisations, including conference papers, pamphlets, journals, newsletters, dissertations, oral history interviews, audio tapes, films, posters, badges, t-shirts and banners. However, far from these being like regular libraries and archives, the importance of understanding the FLA resources in the context of where they come from was highlighted, i.e. the feminist theories and practices key to the management and survival of these resources: collective working, intersectionality, diversity, and a focus on accessibility.

 

Alongside this compelling account of the construction and maintenance of the Feminist Library, including the contemporary challenges of archiving social media and of course the eternal funding challenges of this kind of work, workshop participants also addressed questions of how and why we conduct historical research with women and feminism at its centre. Organizer Hannah Dean (St Andrews) framed the workshop with an explanation of her British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship. Dr. Dean collected and archived women’s life history accounts of business ownership, creating an invaluable resource for her own research and for future scholars. Dr. Linda Perriton (Stirling) made clear why business historians need to ‘pick up the gauntlet’ that feminist historians have thrown down, and engage fully with the messy, marginal practices that are so fundamental to mainstream/malestream accounts of most business history.

 

Professor Stephanie Decker (Aston) followed this with a clear-sighted explanation of how archives can be approached as a site for fieldwork, as well as a source repository. Participants were encouraged again to take account of the nexus of power/knowledge that all history/History is embedded within. Finally, Dr. Scott Taylor (Birmingham) talked around the possibility of feminist methodologies for history, and what they mean for how we bear witness to the lives and activities of women in business history.

 

The stimulating resulting discussion focused on the importance of preserving/uncovering the lesser known/hidden voices of women, and at least one attendee was inspired to conduct her own research into this under-explored area, focusing on women’s work in Turkey in the middle ages.

 

All in all, it was heartening to be part of such an inspiring event that brought together historians, feminists, feminist allies, social scientists, archivists, and activists. Contemporary feminist activism and archivist practices have much to say to business and management research; historical analysis of women’s experiences and feminism even more so!

Business Historian Podcast Alert: Wharton’s Natalya Vinokurova On Whether the U.S. Headed for Another Mortgage Crisis?

Reblogged from The Past Speaks:

The Past Speaks

From the Knowledge@Wharton blog:

Ten years after the mortgage-fueled Great Recession, several of the market and structural components remain in place that could set the environment for the next crisis. In her latest research, Wharton management professor Natalya Vinokurova takes a historical look at the development of mortgage-backed securities and finds fascinating parallels to the present day. She spoke to Knowledge@Wharton about her papers, “Failure to Learn from Failure: The 2008 Mortgage Crisis as a Déjà vu of the Mortgage Meltdown of 1994” (Business History) and “How Mortgage-Backed Securities Became Bonds: The Emergence, Evolution, and Acceptance of Mortgage-Backed Securities in the United States, 1960–1987,” (Enterprise and Society) and why one should heed the warnings of history.

You can listen to the podcast here.

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