Business and Economic Performance since 1945: Britain in International Context
This information is for the 2019/20 session.
Dr Peter Cirenza
This course is available on the BSc in Accounting and Finance, BSc in Economic History, BSc in Economic History and Geography, BSc in Economic History with Economics, BSc in Economics, BSc in Economics and Economic History, BSc in Economics with Economic History, BSc in Management and Diploma in Accounting and Finance. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit and to General Course students.
The course examines the successes and failures of British business and industry, with an emphasis on the post-World War II period. It examines many of the hypotheses on why the UK economy grew more slowly than other OECD nations during this period. Explanations of relative economic decline are examined in the context of comparisons with other European nations and with the US and Japan. The course is organised to combine economy- wide factors, such as education, management organisation, labour relations, and membership in the EU, with case studies of industries as diverse as cotton, cars, banking and steel. By interacting themes and case studies, students get a sense of how national policies interact with business opportunities, and how governments can both aid and harm business. They also get a sense of why much – but not all – of British business history in the post-war period has been characterised as one of relative decline. The main attention is on the post-war period, including current changes in performance, but the historical roots of Britain's recent performance are also considered.
10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the MT. 10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT. 1 hour of lectures and 1 hour of classes in the ST.
There will be a reading week in Week 6 of MT and LT.
During the course students are expected to write three essays or equivalent pieces of written work.
The main work used in the course is G. Owen, From Empire to Europe: The Decline and Revival of British Industry since the Second World War (2000). The following are also useful: S. Broadberry, The productivity race: British manufacturing in international perspective 1850-1990 (1997), R Floud & P Johnson (Eds), The Cambridge economic history of modern Britain: structural change and growth, 1939-2000 (2004), B Elbaum & W Lazonick (Eds), The Decline of the British Economy (1986), M. Blackford, The rise of modern business: Great Britain, the United States, Germany, Japan, and China (2008).
Exam (70%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.
Research project (30%) in the LT.
Department: Economic History
Total students 2018/19: 77
Average class size 2018/19: 11
Capped 2018/19: No
Value: One Unit
Personal development skills
- Team working
- Problem solving
- Application of information skills
- Application of numeracy skills
- Specialist skills