We pay lip service to ‘communication’, a concept which came to us from the United States and became fashionable among industrial advisers and a few managers in the…
We pay lip service to ‘communication’, a concept which came to us from the United States and became fashionable among industrial advisers and a few managers in the 1950s—to the extent that some companies appointed managers of communication. This job appears to have had a variety of specifications, but the incumbents might be summed up generally as a combination of information officer with an internal public relations function. The term ‘public relations’ is no longer of use in describing an organization's relations with the outside world, because PR has assumed overtones suggestive of defensive and selective propaganda, a one‐way flow of ‘image building’ information, rather than the two‐way flow recommended by the communication experts (of course, there is an inward flow, but it amounts to little more than monitoring the media to pick up clues as to the effectiveness of the outward flow).
The SAPPHO Project (Scientific Activity Predictor from Patterns with Heuristic Origins) was launched in 1968, with a grant from the Science Research Council, as a study of success and failure in industrial innovation. Two facts are worth emphasizing in introducing the project briefly. The first is that it had been noted by a number of researchers that, in introducing new products and processes to the market, there is a high failure rate. It varies from 60 to 90 per cent, depending on the sector of industry and the nature of the market. The second fact is allied to this. Innovations appear to happen in clusters, very seldom in isolation. Thus, when the world market for a particular chemical expands and forces up its price, several firms in the industry will encourage research into cost reducing or quantity increasing processes. Of this group of innovating firms, one or two will succeed commercially with a process, others will succeed technologically but not commercially, and some will fail on both counts.
In the last four years, since Volume I of this Bibliography first appeared, there has been an explosion of literature in all the main functional areas of business. This…
In the last four years, since Volume I of this Bibliography first appeared, there has been an explosion of literature in all the main functional areas of business. This wealth of material poses problems for the researcher in management studies — and, of course, for the librarian: uncovering what has been written in any one area is not an easy task. This volume aims to help the librarian and the researcher overcome some of the immediate problems of identification of material. It is an annotated bibliography of management, drawing on the wide variety of literature produced by MCB University Press. Over the last four years, MCB University Press has produced an extensive range of books and serial publications covering most of the established and many of the developing areas of management. This volume, in conjunction with Volume I, provides a guide to all the material published so far.
This short paper owes its origin to a transcript of five tape‐recordings made by a group of scientists and engineers on behalf of Aslib Research Department. The…
This short paper owes its origin to a transcript of five tape‐recordings made by a group of scientists and engineers on behalf of Aslib Research Department. The transcript, made some years ago, has never been published because of its confidential nature. However, a reading and simple analysis do not breach any confidences, and it is hoped that the notes which follow will be of contemporary interest and perhaps of assistance in the further understanding of how to meet the information needs of research workers.
A quarter of a century ago, the second world war ended and Britain's first tottering steps to economic recovery began. Two events of significance to bowler‐hatted servicemen, and of continuing influence on the management scene today, took place.
The idea of optical character recognition (OCR), in other words the “reading” of documents by other than human means, arose as a practical proposition during the Second…
The idea of optical character recognition (OCR), in other words the “reading” of documents by other than human means, arose as a practical proposition during the Second World War. Wartime experience of using computers in the United States had revealed the contrasts in speeds between the transcription of documents to be processed (at that time the punching of cards or tape by operatives working from original documents) and the central processing within the computer itself. Visual output was also slower than central processing but was much speeded up by the introduction of line printers and later of xerography. This “paired” case study, part of a project sponsored by the Science Research Council to examine patterns of success and failure in industrial innovation, is confined to two attempts to innovate in the field of OCR. There were others, one or two of which were contemporary, most of which have followed, have a much more recent history and may be thought to have overtaken, in terms of market penetration, the innovation here designated a commercial success. The point of this study when it was undertaken was to extract data about the two innovations that would be suitable for general analysis by a computer programme designed to search out significant groups of explanatory factors so that the characteristics associated with innovative success might be recognised as typical within an industry, or perhaps generally. This study belongs to one of two groups, the instrument industry, the other group investigated being chemical manufacturing.