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Dr Johannah Duffy

Graduate Research Assistant - Rowntree Business Lectures

I currently work as a Research Assistant- Rowntree Business Lectures and the Inter-war British Management Movement at the University of Exeter. This project examines a growing core of British Management thought and a large number of firms employing management consultants. In this context. Quaker employers led by Cadbury and Rowntree led the way with three significant innovations:

i. Conferences of Quaker employers (Cadbury conferences),

ii. A series of lectures (Rowntree lectures) to enable employers and employees to explore the management challenges facing industry

iii. The establishment of Management Research Group movement by Rowntree.

The initiatives led by Rowntree have received rather limited attention with mainly a focus on their structure rather than content. Our project aims to examine these innovations in greater depth thereby contributing to a clearer understanding of the evolution of British management theory and practice in the inter-war period. It will do so within the context of ideas of knowledge transfer and the importance of communities of practice as represented by the creation of the Management Research Groups. In addition it will create a valuable resource for other researchers in the form of a digitised version of the material.