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The Post-War Productivity Failure: Insights from Oxford (Cowley)

Foreman-Peck, James S. ORCID:, Bowden, S. and Richardson, T. 2001. The Post-War Productivity Failure: Insights from Oxford (Cowley). Business History 43 (3) , pp. 54-78. 10.1080/713999230

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In the story of Britain's post-war economic 'slippage', the British motor industry plays a special role. The downfall was so complete and expensive that commentators have vied with each other in condemning every aspect of management responsible for the industry. Rather than reiterating the fact of failure, the present paper adds structure with evidence to the explanation of management shortcomings. It details the 'how' and 'why', in labour and capital markets. New primary source material is presented in a coherent theoretical framework that explains precisely what was wrong with the piece-rate payment system and how it could have been remedied. The paper goes on to explain the inadequacies of the corporate governance mechanism that allowed this fundamental deficiency to persist, using material from the shareholders' register and interviews.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
ISSN: 0007-6791
Last Modified: 17 Oct 2022 09:14

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