Economic Theory

Authority and Control in Modern Industry: Theoretical and by Paul L. Robertson

By Paul L. Robertson

This booklet takes various theoretical and empirical ways to the problem of association and authority within the glossy company. together with contributions from students within the US, Germany and Japan, it considers such kin, and the potential merits of relatives possession. The ebook combines old and modern case stories from a number assorted industries.

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Extra resources for Authority and Control in Modern Industry: Theoretical and Empirical Perspectives (Routledge Studies in Business Organization and Networks, 10.)

Example text

In spite of its complexity, the essential features of factory development have long been familiar to most economic historians. Certainly those who argue for the technological origins of the factory system are well aware of the wide variety of circumstances in which factories were adopted and that, in a number of instances, technological considerations were unimportant. Why, then, have so many economic historians, including Mantoux, Heaton, Usher, Ashton, Landes, Mathias and others, chosen to place so much emphasis on the role of technology?

Mantoux and Landes, as we have seen, carefully spell out what they mean by ‘factory system’. Indeed, they employ a definition which excludes a ‘system’ consisting of hand factories. Marglin is less specific, for, after initially referring to the ‘factory system’, he then refers to the success of ‘the factory’. The confusion is compounded by his choice of examples that neither Mantoux nor Landes would consider as part of the ‘factory system’. Consequently it is never entirely clear whether he is discussing the rationale for hand factories or for a factory system based on power.

By 1795 some Arkwright-type factories had come into existence (Chapman 1972:30). Substantial changes also took place in the woollen and worsted industries from around 1770 onwards. Power was applied to the preparatory processes of carding, slubbing and spinning, and to finishing with the mechanisation of milling and shearing. The result was a proliferation of mills to house the new technology, with old fulling mills being converted and extended and new water and steam mills being erected. There were some 243 mills in operation in the West Riding of Yorkshire by the beginning of the nineteenth century, as well as a number elsewhere (Jenkins 1975:17).

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