Friday, December 30, 2011

CFP: Italian Marketing History

The Journal of Historical Research in Marketing invites submissions for a special issue focused on “Italian Marketing History,” to be guest edited by Jonathan Morris. The call for papers states:
Several overarching themes are planned including historical studies of marketing within Italy and the ways in which Italy has been marketed beyond the country’s borders, the emergence of new distribution channels, the adaptation of marketing strategies imported from abroad, the ‘economic miracle’ of the late 1950s and subsequent affluence of the 1960s, the development of new consumer identities amongst women and youth, elite and mass tourism, and  the centuries-long marketing history of the Italian luxury industries such as fashion, furniture, and food.
Please see the full call for papers for additional details. The deadline for submissions is August 1, 2013.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Journal Content: Booms and Busts in the Gilded Age

The October 2011 issue of the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era devotes itself to booms and busts in the Gilded Age, particularly the Panic of 1873, which the editor characterizes as perhaps "the least understood major episode in the history of American political economy." For a brief period, all the articles are freely available from the journal's website. Contents include:

Scott Reynolds Nelson, "Introduction: Reflecting on History when Markets Tumble"
Nicolas Barreyre, "The Politics of Economic Crises: The Panic of 1873, the End of Reconstruction, and the Realignment of American Politics"
Scott Reynolds Nelson, "A Financial Crisis in Prints and Cartoons"
Jonathan Levy, "The Freaks of Fortune: Moral Responsibility for Booms and Busts in Nineteenth-Century America"
Scott Reynolds Nelson, "A Storm of Cheap Goods: New American Commodities and the Panic of 1873"
Andrew Zimmerman, "Cotton Booms, Cotton Busts, and the Civil War in West Africa"
Sarah Abrevaya Stein, "Boom and Bust: A Comment"
Full access will be available only until the end of December 2011.

Monday, December 26, 2011

CFP: Cliometric Society Meeting, 2012

The annual Cliometric Society conference in 2012 will be held on the weekend of Friday, May 18 through Sunday, May 20 at Westward Look, Tucson, Arizona, and hosted by the University of Arizona and the National Science Foundation.
   The conference is designed to provide extensive discussion of new and innovative research in economic history. The papers selected for presentation and discussion are sent out to all conference participants in advance. All participants are required to read all papers and to attend the entire conference. At least one author must be a member of the Cliometric Society. For membership information contact Michael Haupert.
   The deadline to submit a paper proposal or a request to attend the conference is January 18,  2012. Interdisciplinary proposals and participants are strongly encouraged. Those wishing to present a paper should provide an abstract and a 3-5 page summary of the proposed paper. In choosing papers and participants, the host committee will assign priority to those who have not attended recently or who have never attended. Please see the full call for papers on the Cliometric Society website for additional information.
   Applicants are strongly urged to submit their materials via the web at the following site: http://eh.net/clio/conferences/prop11.html. Proposals may also be e-mailed to clioconf@hawaii.edu or via snail mail to Cliometrics Conference Administrator, University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization, 2424 Maile Way, Rm 540, Honolulu, HI, 96822 USA (e-mail: shihling@hawaii.edu) or faxed in care of Shih-Ling Chang at 808-956-4347.

Friday, December 23, 2011

“Echoes” Blog Offers Business History Commentary

A few weeks ago, we mentioned the Echoes blog at Bloomberg.com, which Stephen Mihm of the University of Georgia has retooled to "unearth parallels between past and present, highlighting how the economic crises of our own era are perhaps not as unique as we think." Since its revamping, the blog has published numerous essays by members of the business history community, including:
Sean Vanatta, "How the Insurance Industry Tried to Ban Christmas"
Leslie Berlin, "When Steve Jobs Was a 'Joker' "
Louis Hyman, "How Did World War II End the Great Depression?"
Terri Lonier, "The Accident That Started the Breakfast Cereal Business"
Jeffrey Fear, "The Long Shadow of German Hyperinflation
Roger Horowitz, "Commemorating the Ford Edsel's Historically Bad Launch
Among many other contributors familiar to business historians are Regina Lee Blaszczyk, Peter Coclanis, Steve Fraser, Marc Levinson, and Robert E. Wright; Philip Scranton is writing a whole series on topics related to the Great Depression. The blog also provides a weekly list of links of interest from around the Web. Readers can subscribe to the Echoes blog via RSS feed.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

“Invention of Choice” Program Available

The Centre for Business History at Copenhagen Business School is hosting a workshop on January 12-13, 2012, on "The Invention of Choice: Historical and Theoretical Perspectives on Markets, Democracy, and Power." As organizer Stefan Schwarzkopf explains,
The aim of the workshop is to problematize the notion of “choice” from various historical and theoretical perspectives. Rather than asking whether or not more (or less) choice per se is either good or bad for citizens and consumers—a perspective that dominates much of the discussion in marketing, consumer psychology, behavioural economics etc.—we want to use this workshop to exchange ideas about the historical, cultural and political circumstances that led to the reification of choice as a social policy aim in its own right.
   The full program is available here.
   Registration is via email to Stefan Schwarzkopf; the deadline is January 6, 2012.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Hyman's Debtor Nation Is among Choice's Top Academic Books of 2011

Debtor Nation: The History of America in Red Ink (Princeton University Press, 2011), by Louis Hyman, has been listed as one of Choice's top 25 academic books of the year. Readers can find on-line reviews of the book here and here. Hyman discusses the book in the Chronicle of Higher Education Review and can be heard discussing it with Marshall Poe at "New Books in History." He also contributed a comment to the Page 99 Test. Hyman is currently an assistant professor in the Labor Relations, Law, and History department at the ILR school of Cornell University. In 2008, he won the Business History Conference's Herman Krooss Prize for the best dissertation presented at the BHC annual meeting; his thesis was entitled "Debtor Nation: How Consumer Credit Built Postwar America."

Friday, December 16, 2011

CFP: Joseph A. Schumpeter Society, 2012

The International Joseph A. Schumpeter Society will hold its next biennial conference at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, on July 2-5, 2012. The theme of the meeting will be "Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Competitive Processes in Complex Economic Systems." According to the call for papers:
Although the Conference is open to submissions in all areas of evolutionary economics, the Scientific Committee would like to encourage submissions in six priority areas:
  1. Evolutionary perspectives on the causes and consequences of high economic growth in Asian economies
  2. The role of energy and other natural resources in economic evolution
  3. Understanding and achieving environmental sustainability using evolutionary economic analysis
  4. The role of intellectual property in driving innovation in the new media
  5. Long waves, finance and global crises
  6. Productivity growth and structural change
All paper proposals and abstracts must be submitted on-line through the "speaker portal" on the ISS call for papers website. Please check there for the full call for papers and submission instructions. The deadline for submissions is February 17, 2012.
   For additional conference information, please see the ISS 2012 meeting website.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Digital Materials: The Vinson Transportation Collection

The Z. Taylor Vinson Collection at the Hagley Library is one of the largest public collections of automotive trade catalogs and ephemera in the world. The collection covers the history of transportation with a primary focus on the automobile industry from 1891 to the present. The physical collection numbers approximately 67,000 items (700 cubic feet). The collection is currently being processed and will not open for research until 2014. In the meantime, Hagley has created this digital collection to serve as a preview. Interested researchers can also learn about updates to the collection at the Hagley's blog related to the Vinson Collection, which features short articles and full-text examples of items so far digitized.

Monday, December 12, 2011

GHI Launches New Website: “Transatlantic Perspectives”

Marshall Plan poster, 1950
The German Historical Institute (GHI) in Washington, D.C., with funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, has launched a new website on the topic TransatlanticPerspectives: Europe in the Eyes of European Immigrants to the United States,1930-1980. The website is an outlet for
a four-year research project that explores the role of European migrants in transatlantic exchange processes during the mid-twentieth century. The project focuses on migrant professionals involved in business, consumer culture, urban development, and the social sciences. By adapting their European professional heritage to their work in the United States and by translating American innovations to the context of their European homelands, these migrants acted as conduits for social and intellectual transfer.
In addition to biographical information about individual migrants and their transatlantic careers, the site provides links to mass media articles that "illustrate the mutual perceptions of Europe and the United States" and documents, bibliographies, links to archival records, and tools for educators. New articles and resources will be added to the website for the duration of the research project.

Friday, December 9, 2011

New Gallery: The SEC and the Courts

The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) Historical Society has just posted a new on-line gallery, "Chasing the Devil around the Stump: The SEC and the Courts," curated by Kurt Hohenstein of Winona State University. As the exhibit introduction explains,
After the stock market crash of 1929, as the regulation of securities became more complex with the passage of the Securities Acts of the New Deal, the newly-established U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission began to interpret the laws, create and implement rules, and develop legal strategies to regulate the securities industry. . . . The story of the development of securities law necessarily involves the written decisions of the courts, but to focus on merely those decisions . . . ignores much of the story. The context of the case and the decision, the manner by which a case came to be heard by a court, the strategic decisions made by the SEC General Counsel’s Office and appellate legal counsel, the personality of the justices and the court hearing the case, and the legal and economic philosophies of the court all play a part in a court’s decision. Only by considering those factors can the development of securities law as an essential part of our economic history be fully understood and appreciated.
The exhibit features hundreds of letters, telegrams, memos, cartoons, and other items relating to judicial decisions involving the SEC, as well as an extensive explanatory text for each section.


Hat tip to the Legal History Blog.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Business Historians on the U.S. Postal Service

Over at Publick Occurrences, the Common-Place blog, Joseph M. Adelman has written the first two in what he promises will be a series of posts on the history and current problems of the U.S. Postal Service. The first comments on “The Decline and Fall of the U.S. Postal Service,” and the second considers “The Post Office as a State-Business Hybrid.”
   Adelman (Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 2010) is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Program in Early American Economy and Society at the Library Company of Philadelphia, where he is working on a book project tentatively titled “Revolutionary Networks: The Business of Printing and the Production of American Politics, 1763-1789,” a systematic study of the communications infrastructure that framed political debate during the American Revolution. From February to July 2012, he will be an NEH Fellow at the American Antiquarian Society.
  His article, “‘A Constitutional Conveyance of Intelligence, Public and Private’: The Post Office, the Business of Printing, and the American Revolution,” which appears in Enterprise & Society 11, no. 4 (2010), has been awarded the 2011 Rita Lloyd Moroney Junior Prize for Scholarship in Postal History from the U.S. Postal Service.
   In his initial post office-related blog post, Adelman provides a useful link to the text of a study that Richard R. John did  for the Postal Regulatory Commission in 2008, History of Universal Service and the Postal Monopoly.

Monday, December 5, 2011

WEHC 2012 Registration Now Open

Registration and accommodations booking are now open for the World Economic History Congress (WEHC), to be held in Stellenbosch, South Africa, on July 9-13, 2012. The main WEHC page has links to everything one might want to know, including travel, cultural and tourist information, and various deadlines and schedules. In addition, the list of accepted sessions has been posted, as well as links to calls for papers issued by session convenors.
   There is also still time for Ph.D. students and junior postdoctoral researchers who would like to participate in the poster session to submit their abstracts—the deadline is March 1, 2012. Full information about the submission procedures for poster presenters is available on the "Call for Posters" section of the WEHC site.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Program Available: International Congress of Maritime History

The International Maritime Economic History Association will hold its sixth conference in Ghent, Belgium, on July 2-6, 2012, at Het Pand, a historic dominican monastery. The emphasis will be on the international, transnational, and global character of maritime history, with special attention to the relation between maritime and global history. The preliminary program has now been posted. The keynote speaker will be Patrick Manning of the University of Pittsburgh. The program ranges widely over all aspects of maritime economic history, but business historians may find the following sessions of particular interest:
"Nordic Shipping after 1960" (4)
"French Shipping and Trade before the Revolution" (8)
"Nordic Shipping from a Long-Term Perspective" (12)
"Transnational Trade Networks around the Globe, 1600-1815" (15)
"Maritime (In)security: Manuals, Insurances and Shipwrecks" (32)
"Commercial and Political Dimensions of Shipping around the Globe" (37)
"The Rise of Cabin Passenger Transport: Business Meets Leisure on the High Seas" (42)
"Shipowners and the Management of Their Investments" (46)
"The Business of Passenger Transport" (51)
   Please see the conference website for further details, including information about registration and accommodation. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

“Before Madison Avenue”—A Second Conference

 Earlier this month, the American Antiquarian Society (AAS) held a conference with the title, "Before Madison Avenue: Advertising in Early America." Now the Library Company of Philadelphia, in conjunction with the LCP's Visual Culture Program and the AAS's Center for Historic Visual Culture (CHAViC), has announced a similar meeting, also called "Before Madison Avenue: Advertising in Early America," to be held March 15-16, 2012. The conference program is now available. As the organizers explain:
From newspaper agate print to trade cards to broadsides to posters, ads were everywhere in early America, helping to support the rise of entire sectors of the publishing industry and introducing Americans to the ever-expanding world of goods and services that the growing nation offered. But what were the aesthetics, conventions, norms, and business practices of advertising in early America? How did individuals and businesses make sense of the constantly changing media that were available to them, and how did early American consumers respond to printed, spoken, or illustrated inducements to buy? How did what is now both an established business practice and an omnipresent cultural form take shape? Speakers at this conference will present new research on advertising in North America before the rise of the modern advertising agency (late 1870s).
Those interested in attending should visit the conference website for additional information and an on-line registration form.

Monday, November 28, 2011

CFP: Capitalism by Gaslight

The Library Company of Philadelphia will host a conference on June 7-8, 2012, to investigate the topic “Capitalism by Gaslight: The Shadow Economies of Nineteenth-Century America.” As the call for papers explains:
    There were many ways in which Americans earned a living through economic transactions beyond the spheres of “legitimate” commerce. Entrepreneurs of this sort included everyone from prostitutes and card sharps to confidence men, mock auctioneers, pickpockets, fences of stolen goods, and many others. Although these shadow economies may have unfolded “off the books,” they were anything but marginal. Instead, they were crucially important parts of the mainstream economy, bound up in the development of commercial and industrial capitalism in nineteenth-century America. The shadow economy’s successful entrepreneurs—women, people of color, and children among them—had to be even more creative, flexible, and adaptive than “respectable” counterparts. The practices, networks, and goods that constituted shadow economies often paralleled and in some instances overlapped with those found in wholesale and retail businesses, calling into question the morality and legitimacy of legal economic transactions.
   The conveners seek paper proposals that explore how shadow economies operated in the nineteenth-century United States and examine the meanings Americans gave to them. To ensure consideration, please send a 2-3- page abstract and CV to both Wendy Woloson at wewo99@gmail.com and Brian Luskey at brian.luskey@mail.wvu.edu no later than January 15, 2012. A website for the conference is not yet available.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Columbia University Business History Forum This Tuesday

Readers in or near New York City will be interested in the Columbia University Business History Forum's November 29 meeting, which will be a symposium on Capitalism Takes Command: The Social Transformation of Nineteenth-Century America (Chicago, 2011 [but out in January 2012]), edited by Michael Zakim and Gary J. Kornblith.
   The symposium will meet from 6:30 to 8:00 pm, in Room 523, Butler Library, Columbia University, and will be followed by a reception. The meeting, which is open to the public, is sponsored by the Columbia Rare Book and Manuscript Library; the Herbert H. Lehman Center for American  History; and the History Department at the New School for Social Research and Eugene Lang College.
   Capitalism Takes Command presents original histories of the commercialization of farming, the creation of a national mortgage market, the collateralization of slaves, the invention of office systems, and more—an inventory of means by which capitalism became America's new revolutionary tradition. This collection of essays argues that capitalism's effects reached far beyond the purview of the economy. As business ceaselessly revised its own practices, a new demographic of private bankers, insurance brokers, investors in securities, and young clerks hoping to make partner, among many others, assumed center stage, displacing older elites and forms of property. Explaining how capital became an "ism" and how business became a social philosophy, Capitalism Takes Command brings the economy back into the mainstream of American history.
   In addition to essays by the speakers below, the book contains contributions from Amy Dru Stanley, Robert Wright, Tamara Plakins Thornton, Jeffrey Sklansky, and Sean Patrick Adams.
   The program consists of:
"Capitalism:  An American Revolutionary Tradition," Michael Zakim (Tel Aviv)

"Toxic Debt, Liar Loans, Collateralized and Securitized Human Beings, and the Panic of 1837," Edward Baptist (Cornell)

"Inheriting Property and Debt: From Family Security to Corporate Accumulation," Elizabeth Blackmar (Columbia)

"The Mortgage Worked the Hardest: The Fate of Landed Independence in Nineteenth-Century America," Jonathan Levy (Princeton)
For further information please email Eric Wakin etw2@columbia.edu; if you wish to attend please email
 cul-events@columbia.edu.

Friday, November 25, 2011

EHS 2012 Conference Program Now Available

The Economic History Society has posted the preliminary program for its 2012 meeting, which will be held at St. Catherine's College at the University of Oxford on March 30-April 1, 2012. In addition to two sessions (IV.F and V.B) specifically labelled "business history," the program contains many topics of interest to both business and economic historians. The 2012 Tawney Lecture will be delivered by Professor Sir Roderick Floud of Gresham College.
    Registration information and other details will be posted on the EHS conference site as they become available.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

CFP: Historicizing Routines Conference at Hagley

The Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society at the Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington, Delaware, and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania present will host a conference on “Historicizing Routines” on November 1-2, 2012. The organizers “invite empirical and historically focused papers that explore the development, devolution, destruction, and re-creation of routines in twentieth-century organizations and bounded communities.” Herewith the complete call for papers:
    Routines are central to much human behavior, both within organizations and more broadly, because they facilitate the navigation of complex social, economic, and ecological environments. Too often, however, they are simplistically equated with stasis and adaptation, and unfairly counter-posed to innovation or transformation. In reality, routines can be dynamic, as the organizations and individuals that follow them encounter and respond to new situations or conditions that disrupt established behaviors. Indeed, well-designed routines can anticipate novel complications and can help manage and channel change, thereby reinforcing or enhancing traditional and vernacular practices and relationships rather than undermining them. Historically, both those routines that fail in the face of challenge and environmental shifts, and those which reflexively embrace disruption and reordering are of especial interest. While the presence of routines is most obvious in business firms, governments, militaries, labor unions, and other bureaucracies, they also are embedded in emergency response structures, research protocols, religious organizations, and settled communities. Hence exploring routines, especially their development, devolution, and transformation, can generate new insights to our understanding of the past.
    Papers may be framed at any geographical scale (local, regional, national, transnational), but should detail what constitutes particular routines, how they came into being, how well adapted they may have been to environments and opportunities, how amenable they were to change, and what dynamics such changes actually provoked. We are especially interested in historical studies and ethnographies that explore how routines influence fluidity and stasis, how they organize and shape innovation, as well as how they interfere with or facilitate adaptation to new conditions. Failures often generate a search for new and more effective routines, another important process. Papers also may address the relationship between routines and “success”—for example, how routine practices by firms or bureaucracies impede or assist an organization achieve its objectives and/or do better than others.
    The deadline for receipt of paper proposals is March 31, 2012. Please send a 500-word description of your paper and the sources on which it is based along with a brief CV to Carol Lockman, clockman@Hagley.org. Travel funding will be available for presenters.

Monday, November 21, 2011

CFP: Joint EBHA-BHSJ Meeting, 2012

The European Business History Association will hold its next meeting jointly with the Business History Society of Japan on August 30-September 1, 2012, at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris. The theme of the meeting is "Business Enterprises and the Tensions between Local and Global."
Over several centuries companies have pursued their business strategies on several dimensions, from the local to the global. This can be seen in the recruitment of personnel, their procurement, their financing, their R & D, their production or services, and their relations with consumers, social forces, intellectuals, public authorities, education and research systems. However, the process of adapting to these multiple dimensions is not straightforward, even for large and experienced multinationals, and often results in tensions between global and local. . . . comparisons between regions and countries, branches of industry, single enterprises, and, of course, over time, are encouraged.
   Proposals for papers and or sessions related to the theme of the conference are welcome, although paper and/or session proposals not directly related to it will also be considered. For paper proposals, please submit a title and abstract of no more than 400 words (one A4 page) along with a one-page CV to ebha-bhsj.paris@ehess.fr. Session proposals should include a brief abstract of the session along with a one-page abstract and a one-page CV for each participant. The deadline for all proposals is January 15, 2012.
   Please see the full call for papers for additional information.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Lemelson Center Fellowship Applications Available

Deadlines are approaching for the Lemelson Center Fellowship Program and Travel to Collections Award Program, which support projects that present creative approaches to the study of invention and innovation in American society.
   The programs provide access to the expertise of the Institution's research staff and the vast invention and technology collections of the National Museum of American History (NMAH). The NMAH Archives Center documents both individuals and firms across a range of time periods and subject areas including railroads, musical instruments, television, radio, plastics, and sports equipment. Lemelson Center invites applications covering a broad spectrum of research topics that resonate with its mission to foster a greater understanding of invention and innovation, broadly defined. However, the Center especially encourages project proposals that will illuminate the role of women inventors; inventors with disabilities; inventors from diverse backgrounds; or any inventions and technologies associated with groups that are traditionally under-represented in the historical record.  For a comprehensive list of Archives Center collections, see the NMAH Archives website.   

   The Lemelson Center Fellowship Program annually awards 2 to 3 fellowships to pre-doctoral graduate students, post-doctoral scholars, and other professionals who have completed advanced training.  Fellows are expected to reside in the Washington, D.C. area, to participate in the Center's activities, and to make a presentation of their work to colleagues at the museum. Fellowship tenure is based upon the applicants’ stated needs (and available funding) up to a maximum of ten weeks. Stipends for 2012-2013 will be $575/week for pre-doctoral fellows and $870/week for post-doctoral and professional fellows. Applications are due January 15, 2012. For application procedures and additional information, please see the Lemelson Center Fellowship website. Researchers should consult with the fellowship coordinator prior to submitting a proposal; please contact historian Eric S. Hintz, Ph.D. at +1 202-633-3734 or hintze@si.edu.   

   The Lemelson Center Travel to Collections Award Program annually awards 4 to 5 short-term travel grants to encourage the use of its invention-related collections. Awards are $150 per day for a maximum of 10 business days and may be used to cover transportation, living, and reproduction expenses. Only applicants who reside or attend school beyond commuting distance of the NMAH are eligible for this program. Applications are due November 30, 2011. For application procedures and additional information, please see the Center's Travel Grant website. Researchers should consult with the travel award coordinator prior to submitting a proposal; please contact archivist Alison Oswald at +1 202-633-3726 or oswalda@si.edu.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

BHC Doctoral Colloquium Deadline Approaches

The Oxford Journals Doctoral Colloquium in Business History offers a small group of graduate students an opportunity to work intensively on their dissertations with distinguished Business History Conference-affiliated scholars, including at least two BHC officers.
    The 2012 Doctoral Colloquium will be held in conjunction with the Business History Conference annual meeting in Philadelphia. This prestigious workshop, sponsored by the BHC and generously funded by Oxford University Press, will take place Wednesday evening, March 28, 2012, and all day Thursday, March 29, 2012. The Colloquium is limited to ten students. Participants will discuss dissertation proposals, relevant literatures and research strategies, and employment opportunities in business history. The Colloquium is intended for doctoral candidates in early and mid-stages of their dissertation projects.

To be considered for the Colloquium, applicants must provide:
a statement of interest
a CV
a preliminary or final dissertation prospectus of 10-15 pages
a letter of support sent directly from the dissertation supervisor (or prospective supervisor)
Submit the above items to Roger Horowitz, Secretary-Treasurer, Business History Conference, P. O. Box 3630, Wilmington, DE 19807, USA. Phone: (302) 658-2400; fax: (302) 655-3188; or via email at BHC2012@Hagley.org by December 1, 2011.

    All participants receive a stipend that will partially cover the costs of their attendance at the annual meeting. The Colloquium committee will notify applicants of its decisions by January 10, 2012. Questions about the Doctoral Colloquium may be directed to:
Pamela W. Laird, Ph.D.
BHC Doctoral Colloquium Director
Professor, History Department
University of Colorado Denver
Denver, CO  80217-3364  USA
Phone (303) 556-4497 Email: pamela.laird@ucdenver.edu
   For more information about the 2012 Business History Conference annual meeting, please visit the meeting homepage.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

SEC Historical Society Examines Feature Films and Perceptions of Financial Regulation

The Securities and Exchange Commission Historical Society has posted a videocast of its recent program, "Silver Screen: How Films Shape Public Perception of Financial Regulation." Moderated by David Lipton of the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University of America, the program features a discussion of the topic by J. Bradley Bennett of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and John Reed Stark of Stroz Friedberg LLC (and formerly chief of the SEC's Office of Internet Enforcement). Particularly useful is the accompanying paper by Loren E. Miller, a Ph.D. candidate in history at American University; after a short introduction, she provides a 35-page listing of relevant movies from "The Good-for-Nothing" in 1914 to "Too Big to Fail" in 2011, with "Image of the Markets, Nature of the Misdeeds, and Role of Regulation in Film" for each entry.

Monday, November 14, 2011

December Enterprise & Society Now Available

The December 2011 issue of Enterprise & Society is now available on the Oxford University Press website. Full text access requires a subscription (included in BHC membership), but the abstracts or extracts are accessible by all.
  Contents include papers from the Krooss Dissertation Session at the 2011 BHC meeting as well as the following articles:
Sean Patrick Adams, "How Choice Fueled Panic: Philadelphians, Consumption, and the Panic of 1837"
Christopher Jones, "The Carbon-Consuming Home: Residential Markets and Energy Transitions"
Neveen Abdelrehim, Josephine Maltby, and Steven Toms, "Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Control: The Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, 1933–1951"
Stuart W. Leslie, "The Strategy of Structure: Architectural and Managerial Style at Alcoa and Owens-Corning"
The 2011 Presidential Address, normally included in this issue, will appear in the March 2012 number.

Friday, November 11, 2011

CFP: “Globalization of African American Business and Consumer Culture”

The German Historical Institute (GHI) in Washington, D.C., has issued a call for papers for a workshop to be held on February 24-25, 2012, on the topic “Globalization of African American Business and Consumer Culture.” Potential topics include, but are not limited to
The marketing and selling of African-American culture (e.g. music, film, literature) around the globe
African-American consumers and the global economy (e.g. import products)
African-American businesses and businesspeople around the world
Non-American cultural products (e.g. music, film, literature) and African-American consumers
African-American international tourists and international tourists visiting African-American sites
African-American consumers and immigrant businesses
The international trade in the black freedom struggle's legacy (e.g. The Black Power Mixtape)
   Please see the full call for papers for a complete description.
   Proposals should include a paper title, a one-page abstract, and a CV, and should be sent via email to Joshua Clark Davis no later than December 2, 2011. Expenses for travel (economy class) and accommodations will be covered, although participants are encouraged to defray travel costs with funds from their home institution when possible.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Business History Blog at Bloomberg View

Stephen Mihm of the University of Georgia has revamped the Echoes blog at Bloomberg.com to focus on historical parallels to modern events in business and economics. As he explains:
History doesn’t repeat itself. Sometimes, though, it rhymes. That idea animates our revamped "Echoes" blog, dedicated to the history of economics, business, finance and, above all, capitalism. Our contributors will aim to unearth parallels between past and present, highlighting how the economic crises of our own era are perhaps not as unique as we think. . . . Many of history's best economic stories can’t be reduced to numbers and charts. They're dramatic tales of hubris, innovation, brilliance and luck—of people caught in the grips of forces that they don't fully comprehend. We'll be trying to tell those stories here.
   Commentary will be offered by business and economic historians, including co-contributors Philip Scranton of Rutgers University and John B. Taylor of Stanford. The first post under the revamped blog considers "How Populist Outrage Gave Birth to the Federal Reserve."

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

NYC Market Cultures Group Upcoming Meetings

The Market Cultures Group of New York City [no website] invites you to attend "Pioneering Economic Forecasters and Their Legacies," a presentation by Walter Friedman (research fellow, Harvard Business School, and editor, Business History Review), in conversation with Anders Maxwell (managing director, Peter J. Solomon Company). The event will take place on Thursday, November 10, 6:00-7:30 p.m., at 80 Fifth Avenue, Room 529, The New School (New York City). For a copy of the paper, please contact Walter Friedman.
   Next month the Market Cultures Group will host "The Legacy and Lessons of the Air Controllers' Strike," by Joseph McCartin (associate professor of history and director of the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University and the author of the upcoming Collision Course: Ronald Reagan, The Air Traffic Controllers, and the Strike that Changed America), in conversation with Ruth Milkman (professor of sociology, CUNY Graduate Center and academic director, Murphy Labor Institute, CUNY). The talk will take place on Thursday, December 1, at 6:00 pm, Room 1009, 16 E. 16th Street, The New School.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Conference Program: History of Consumer Culture

The History of Consumer Culture research group in Japan will be holding its next conference at Gakushuin University, Tokyo, on March 26-28, 2012. The meeting's theme is "Genealogies of Curiosity and Material Desire: How Has Consumer Taste Been Constructed?" The program, which includes links to abstracts of the papers, has now been posted. In addition to regular sessions, keynote addresses will be given by Toshio Kusamitsu, Professor in Humanities and Culture, Open University of Japan; John Styles, Research Professor in History, University of Hertfordshire; Avner Ofner, Chichele Professor of Economics History, All Souls College, Oxford; and John Brewer, Eli and Edye Broad Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
    Additional conference details, including lodging and registration information, are available on the conference website.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Program and Publications: Latin American Business History

The Grupo Cuatrinacional de Estudios Empresariales e Historia Económica and the Coloquio de Historia de Empresas will hold a joint business history symposium on November 10-11, 2011, at the Universidad de San Andrés in Buenos Aires. The program has now been posted. Sessions are organized around three themes: "Economic Fluctuations and Business Strategies in the Twentieth Century," "The Internationalization of Business," and "Agroindustries and Business." More information and registration materials are available on the conference website. Questions may be addressed to Andrea Lluch.
     As part of the "Internationalization of Business" topic, there will be a presentation of the book El impacto histórico de la globalización en Argentina y Chile: empresas y empresarios, edited by Geoffrey Jones and Andrea Lluch (Buenos Aires, Temas, 2011). The book represents an early product of the "Latin American Business Initiative" of the Harvard Business School, which aims to "facilitat[e] research on Latin American business history, especially the Southern Cone countries."
    The Grupo Cuatrinacional de Estudios Empresariales e Historia Económica was founded in 2006 by researchers in Mexico, Spain, Argentina, and Colombia, in order to produce new and comparative knowledge in entrepreneurial studies and economic history. The Coloquio de Historia de Empresas at the Universidad de San Andrés has been meeting since 2002 to promote the comparative study of business history.
    Readers may also be interested in the History, Business, and Entrepreneurship Newsletter, published twice annually by the Historia y Empresariado group at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotà, Colombia. The March and September 2011 newsletters are available (in both English and Spanish). The second contains, among other items, an essay by Marcelo Bucheli and Daniel Wadhwani on "Toward a Reintegration of History in Organization Studies," and summaries of the contents of the special issue of Entreprises et Histoire on Latin America (April 2009).

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Digital Project: Railroads and the Making of Modern America

"Railroads and the Making of Modern America" is a digital history site at the University of Nebraska Lincoln, led by William G. Thomas III of Nebraska and Richard Healey, a geographer at the University of Portsmouth, UK, who focuses on historical GIS. The site's introduction explains:
This project seeks to document and represent the rapid and far-reaching social effects of railroads and to explore the transformation of the United States to modern ideas, institutions, and practices in the nineteenth century. The railroad was the first and most complex national system in American history. The records of this system's colossal growth are as diverse as they are voluminous, ranging from massive and detailed corporate records to editorials, cartoons, poetry, songs, and even abandoned track lines in today's landscape. While many histories have addressed the railroad's importance, we need a new approach that takes account of how the railroad triggered unexpected outcomes in American society and how the system became wedded into the fabric of modern America. Railroads and the Making of Modern America seeks to use the digital medium to investigate, represent, and analyze this social change and document episodes of the railroad's social consequence.
The project includes a number of topics and ways of looking at railroad history. Among the several topics examined so far are "Slavery and Southern Railroads," "The 1877 Railroad Strike," and "Tourism and Mobility." Another section is "Views," which "contains information pulled from documents, databases, and historical sources and each seeks to demonstrate the social effects of the development of the railroad network over time." Topics here include "Technology and the Expansion of the U.S. South," "Land Sales in Nebraska," and "Travel Time: How Railroads Shaped Time and Space." The site also contains student projects, datasets, and links to other on-line railroad history sources.
    Thomas, former director of the Virginia Center for Digital History, previously worked on The Valley of the Shadow project and on The Countryside Transformed: The Railroad and the Eastern Shore of Virginia, 1870-1935.

Monday, October 31, 2011

CFP: Markets, Law, and Ethics, 1400-1850

A call for papers has been issued for a conference on "Markets, Law, and Ethics, 1400-1850," which will be held at the University of Sheffield on June 22-24, 2012. In the words of the organizers,
This call seeks papers concerned with the culture of the market in the late medieval and early modern periods, conceived broadly as the norms, laws, customs and practices of exchange, including (but not limited to) buying and selling and lending and borrowing in 1400-1850. . . . This conference offers an opportunity for scholars from diverse historiographical backgrounds to come together and compare and contrast findings and thoughts across conventional chronologies and geographies, to reflect on the implications of supra-imperial and global approaches, and ponder possible future interpretations of late medieval/early modern market culture.
    Paper proposals should include a title and 300-word abstracts, and should be emailed to Simon Middleton and J. E. Shaw by December 15, 2011. Invited speakers include Christopher Tomlins, Martha Howell, and Pierre Gervais. Please see the full call for papers for a complete list and additional details.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Historians' Take on Occupy Wall Street

Bonus Army, Washington, D.C, July 1932
(Library of Congress)
A number of scholars, including some business and labor historians, have been commenting on historical points of comparison for the current "Occupy Wall Street" movement. A brief rundown:
Alan Brinkley, Columbia University, on Politico, "Bonus March and Occupy Wall Street"
Steve Fraser, New York University, in The Nation, "OWS and the All-American Tradition of Resistance"
Beverly Gage, Yale University, on NPR's "All Things Considered" (transcript and audio)
Gary Gerstle, Vanderbilt University, in Salon.com and on YouTube
Michael Kazin, Georgetown University, New York Times, "Whatever Happened to the American Left?"
Kim Phillips-Fein, New York University, New York Times op-ed, "In Bleak '70s, Salvo of Protest"
Judith Stein, City University of New York, at Dissent, "OWS: A Sign of Our Times"
The History News Network is keeping a list of historians' commentary on its Hot Topics page, and Tomiko Brown-Nagin has offered a rundown with commentary over at the Legal History Blog.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Program: “Resources: Endowment or Curse, Better or Worse?”

The Yale Program in Economic History and Yale Environmental History will co-sponsor a conference on the theme “Resources: Endowment or Curse, Better or Worse,” which will take place on February 24-25, 2012. The program has now been posted on the Program in Economic History website. Among the questions the conference will consider are: “How do the characteristics and availability of natural resources shape political institutions? How have states mobilized resources to bolster their legitimacy and extend their influence? How have economic and environmental historians, political scientists, and others approached the concept of resources in the past and what are some directions for future work?” The keynote address will be given by Richard White of Stanford University, who will speak on “Incommensurate Measures: Nature, History, and Economics.”
    Further information and updates about the conference will be posted on the Yale Program in Economic History website as they become available.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

CFP: Economic History Association, 2012

The Economic History Association (EHA) will hold its next annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, on September 21-23, 2012. The theme for the meeting is "Revisiting the Transportation Revolution." The program committee (Robert Margo, Boston University [chair]; Ran Abramitzky, Stanford University; Leah Boustan, UCLA; and Eugene White, Rutgers University) welcomes submissions on all subjects in economic history, though some preference will be given to papers that specifically fit the year's theme. All papers should be submitted individually; authors may suggest that three particular papers would fit well together in a session but such suggestions are not binding on the committee.
    Papers and session proposals should be submitted online at www.eh.net/eha/meetings/submissions. Paper proposals should include a 3-5 page précis and a 150-word abstract suitable for publication in the Journal of Economic History. The submission deadline is January 27, 2012.
    A poster session welcomes work from dissertations in progress. Applications for the poster session should be submitted online and are due no later than May 18, 2012. The dissertation session convened by Naomi Lamoreaux (Yale University) and Joachim Voth (Pompeu Fabra University) will honor six dissertations completed during the 2011-2012 academic year. The submission deadline is May 15, 2012. Information on how to submit will be posted at http://eh.net/eha/meetings/2012-meeting.
    More details are available on the EHA 2012 meeting page, and additional information will be posted there as it becomes available. Questions may be directed to EHA Meetings Coordinator Jari Eloranta.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Exhibit: Money and Beauty


Detail from Marinus van Reymerswaele,
"The Usurers," c. 1540
Readers may be interested in an exhibit that opened in September at the Palazzo Strozzi in Florence,"Money and Beauty: Bankers, Botticelli, and the Bonfire of the Vanities." The exhibit "recounts the birth of our modern banking system and of the economic boom that it triggered, providing a reconstruction of European life and the continent's economy from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance." For those fortunate enough to be in Florence soon, the exhibit runs through January 22, 2012; others can read more about the exhibit and see examples of the artwork on a number of sites, in addition to the "exhibition walkthrough" material on the Palazzo Strozzi exhibition pages:
The Economist, "The Benefits of Early Money-Laundering"
The Wall Street Journal, "For the Love of Money: The Birth of Modern Banking and the Art That Made It Possible"
Medievalists.net
CNN, "Tracing Renaissance Art to the Birth of Modern Banking"
France 24, "Money and Beauty in Renaissance Florence"
Coins Weekly, "Money and Beauty"

Monday, October 24, 2011

CFP: M6 Business History Workshop

The M6 Business History Group, an informal network of business historians who live and work near the M6 motorway in England, will hold its next workshop on January 26, 2012, at Coventry University. As detailed in the call for papers, the topic is "Firms' Responses to Globalisation in Different Periods of History." Although the workshop will focus on how firms have responded to globalisation, the submission of papers outside of the theme is also encouraged. Presenters from all disciplines are welcome to attend, as are those who work in archives. Those interested in presenting should submit a 200-word abstract to Andrew Smith before December 1, 2011. Those interested in attending should complete and return the booking form, by January 19, 2012. The full call for papers is available here.

Friday, October 21, 2011

OSU eHistory Site Features William Childs on U.S. Energy Policy

Origins is an on-line site for multimedia occasional papers published by the Department of History at Ohio State University. The current featured article, “Energy Policy and the Long Transition in America,” written by OSU professor William R. Childs, will be of interest to business and economic historians. The abstract states:
Energy has been in the news lately: The natural gas industry appears to be developing a world market; the U.S. Army is experimenting with “alternative” and “renewable” energy sources; “green” and “conservation” are being marketed as sound corporate management strategies. A half century ago the emphasis on natural gas, alternative and renewable fuels, and conservation were not in the energy policy mix in the United States. The convergence of historical trends in the 1970s, however, ushered in a “long transition” in American energy policy-making that is on-going. This month historian William R. Childs untangles a few of the many complex strands that make up the history of energy policy in America.
In addition to the text, the article is accompanied by images, maps and charts, and a bibliography, including links to on-line sources; it is also available as a podcast.
   Childs is the author of The Texas Railroad Commission: Understanding Regulation in America to the Mid-Twentieth Century (TAMU Press, 2005), as well as many articles and essays on American and business history. Among other projects, he is currently working on a book on U.S. energy policy.
   Origins is just one project in the group of digital initiatives that make up the OSU eHistory site. Others include multimedia projects, book reviews, primary sources, and a maps and images collection.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

GIS: Viewing U.S. Expansion through Newspapers

Recently we mentioned a GIS site that visualized the growth of the United States through the establishment of post offices. Stanford University's Rural West Initiative provides a similar visualization through the founding of newspapers in its "Journalism's Voyage West." In addition to the primary map, which provides a visual representation of the number and locations of newspapers from 1690 to 2011, the site also includes historical background, an industry analysis, and other data visualizations, including the growth of daily and weekly newspapers, and German- and Spanish-language publications.

Monday, October 17, 2011

CFP: ABH 2012 Meeting

The Association of Business Historians has issued a call for papers for its 2012 meeting, which will be held at the Aston Business School, Birmingham, U.K., on July 6-7, 2012. The theme of the meeting is "Decision-Makers and Decision-Making." As the call for papers states,
Business history has frequently focused on the role of strategy and decision-makers, and its long-term impact on the organisation and its wider environment, both nationally or internationally. Conversely, the potential to make decisions is often limited, and constrained by economic, political and social factors, while recent shocks to the economy have been seen as politicians and business leaders taking the wrong strategic decisions when trying to manage risks.
This gives rise to a number of possible topics, which are detailed in the full call for papers. The ABH will also welcome papers on any topic related to business history, even those that do not focus on the conference theme, and on any time period or country. Proposals are welcome for either individual papers or entire sessions (normally of one-and-a-half hours). Each paper proposal should include a short (one-page) abstract, a list of 3 to 5 keywords, and a brief CV. Proposals for sessions should also include a cover letter containing a session title and a brief description of or rationale for the proposed sessions. The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2012. Proposals should be sent electronically to abhconference@aston.ac.uk or by mail to:
Dr. Stephanie Decker
Aston Business School
Aston Triangle
Birmingham B4 7ET
United Kingdom
Questions should be directed to Stephanie Decker, who is serving as the local organizer.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

CFP: Automotive History Conference

The Society of Automotive Historians is seeking proposals for papers to be presented at its Ninth Biennial Automotive History Conference, to be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 12-14, 2012. The conference theme is “A World of Cars: Manufacturers, Drivers, and the Impact of Globalization.” It will focus on the international growth of the industry, initially by North American, later by European, and more recently by Asian manufacturers, leading to the dominance of integrated multinational corporations. Please see the full call for papers (scroll down the SAH page) for recommended topics. Proposals should include the title of the submission, names and affiliations of presenters, chairs, and other participants, together with addresses, phone/fax numbers, email addresses of contact personnel, the proposed format (paper, panel, workshop, etc.), and a one-page abstract describing the content of the presentation. Proposals must be received by October 31, 2011. Proposals should be submitted by email to Arthur Jones, conference chair. The meeting will conclude with a dinner and an address by the distinguished economic and business historian Mira Wilkins.

In light of Professor Wilkins' participation, readers may also be interested to learn that Cambridge University Press recently released a new edition (with a new introduction) of her 1964 book (with Frank Ernest Hill), American Business Abroad: Ford on Six Continents (June 2011), in both hardcover and paperback.

Friday, October 14, 2011

CFP: Religious Traditions and Business Behavior

The Center for Financial Policy at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business has issued a call for papers for a "Henry Kaufman Forum on Religious Traditions and Business Behavior," to be held in spring 2013. The forum will explore "two central questions in the relationship between the world’s major religious traditions and the business behavior of adherents to those traditions: First, what do the world’s major organized religious traditions . . . proscribe about business and financial ethics and behavior? Second, how and why have business and financial actors seriously compromised the leading religious traditions of their cultures?"
   The submission deadline for completed papers  is February 1, 2012. Please submit proposed papers as e-mail attachments to BusinessandReligion@rhsmith.umd.edu. Those sending papers should also include a title page with an abstract, names of authors/affiliations, and contact information for the submitting author. Scholars will be invited to participate in two discussion sessions in College Park, Md., prior to the conference. Further instructions will be communicated to the scholars at the time of proposal selection.
   More information, including the complete call for papers, can be found on the Center's website.
   The University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business received a $1 million endowment from the Henry & Elaine Kaufman Foundation to support a fellowship in business history, in affiliation with the school’s Center for Financial Policy. Long-time BHC member David Sicilia was appointed the first Henry Kaufman Fellow in Business History, effective July 1, 2010, through 2015.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Steve Jobs and Stanford University Library's Silicon Valley Archives

The Stanford Silicon Valley Archives, under the direction of Henry Lowood, curator for history of science and technology collections in the Stanford University Libraries, and project historian Leslie Berlin, comprises an enormous and growing repository of materials related to the history of Silicon Valley. With the recent passing of Steve Jobs, the Apple collection has become a particular focus of interest, and Lowood and Berlin have produced a YouTube video outlining the Archives related holdings; as they describe it, the Apple content "provides a unique window into the early years of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' career. The collection comprises approximately 600 linear feet of documents, photos, videos, hardware and software, making it the largest assortment of Apple-related materials in the world."


   Other Archives holdings include materials on, for example, Robert Noyce, Fairchild Semiconductor, and Frederick Terman.Those interested in undertaking research in the Archives materials should contact Leslie Berlin.


Hat tip: AHA Today

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

New Books of Interest: Early Fall Edition

A selection of new and forthcoming books in business and economic history:
Caroline Frank, Objectifying China, Imagining America: Chinese Commodities in Early America (University of Chicago Press, December 2011)

Paul Garner, British Lions and Mexican Eagles: Business, Politics, and Empire in the Career of Weetman Pearson in Mexico, 1889-1919 (Stanford University Press, September 2011)

Robert Gudmestad, Steamboats and the Rise of the Cotton Kingdom (Louisiana State University Press, October 2011)

Barbara Hahn, Making Tobacco Bright: Creating an American Commodity, 1617-1937 (Johns Hopkins University Press, September 2011)

William M. McClenahan, Jr., and William H. Becker, Eisenhower and the Cold War Economy (Johns Hopkins University Press, November 2011)

Matthew Parker, The Sugar Barons: Family, Corruption, Empire, and War in the West Indies (Walker Books, August 2011)

Brian Schoen, The Fragile Fabric of Union: Cotton, Federal Politics, and the Global Origins of the Civil War (Johns Hopkins University Press, September 2011)

James Simpson, Creating Wine: The Emergence of a World Industry, 1840-1914 (Princeton University Press, October 2011)

William G. Thomas, The Iron Way: Railroads, the Civil War, and the Making of Modern America (Yale University Press, September 2011)

Carl Wennerlind, Casualties of Credit: The English Financial Revolution, 1620-1720 (Harvard University Press, November 2011)

Olivier Zunz, Philanthropy in America: A History (Princeton University Press, November 2011)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Program Available for Mathew Carey Conference

"Ireland, America, and the Worlds of Mathew Carey" will take place in Philadelphia, Pa., on October 27-29, 2011, hosted by the McNeil Center for Early American Studies, the Library Company of Philadelphia, the Program in Early American Economy and Society, and the University of Pennsylvania Libraries. As the organizers explain, "This is the first part of a trans-Atlantic conference on Mathew Carey (1760-1839) that will take place on two occasions. . . . The second part of this trans-Atlantic conference will be held at Trinity College Dublin, on November 17-19, 2011. It will be hosted by the Centre for Irish-Scottish and Comparative Studies and Trinity College Dublin."
   Carey is of interest to business and economic historians because, again in the words of the organizers,
By the mid-1790s, Mathew Carey had transformed himself from printer to publisher, from artisan to manufacturer, becoming the most important American book publisher of the early national period. Carey's identity as an Irish-American and a Catholic, and his contributions to economics and politics are inseparable from the trans-Atlantic print culture of the early national era.
The program for the October meeting has now been posted, including links to the full text of papers.
   The conference is free, but registration is required. Details are available on the conference website.
   The preliminary program for the second part of the conference in Dublin is available on Sarah Crider Arndt's Print on the Periphery blog.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Chinese Business History: New Literature Review

Morris L. Bian of Auburn University has recently published a review of the literature on modern Chinese business history, 1978-2008, entitled "Interpreting Enterprise, State, and Society." The article appears in the September 2011 issue of Frontiers of History in China (full viewing requires a subscription or access through a subscribing institution). According to the abstract:
This article offers a critical review of literature in the area of modern Chinese business history from 1978 to 2008.  It focuses on four interconnected topics: (1) the evolution of industrial capitalism, (2) the adoption of corporate hierarchies and/or social networks, (3) the change of financial institutions and monetary system, and (4) the development of state-owned industries and the formation of the (central) state enterprise system.  The review reveals not only significant growth of the field of modern Chinese business history over the last three decades but also the existence of major gaps. The article concludes by considering the implications of its findings for understanding the political economy of business enterprises and enterprise systems in different national and historical contexts.

   Bian is the author of The Making of the State Enterprise System in Modern China (Harvard University Press, 2005), and he is the recipient of the BHC's Newcomen Article Award (now the Oxford Journals Article Prize) for his essay, "The Sino-Japanese War and the Formation of the State Enterprise System in China: A Case Study of the Dadakou Iron and Steel Works, 1938-1945," published in the 2002 issue of Enterprise & Society