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Event Announcement: Kurgan-van Hentenryk Chair in Business History International Workshop:The Entrepreneurial State and the Innovative Enterprise

Monday 8 May 2017

Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)


The Kurgan-van Hentenryk Chair in Business History of the Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management (Université Libre de Bruxelles), which has been launched in 2015, aims at advancing and diffusing research in the field of business history, with a special emphasis on the history of the knowledge economy.

It is widely accepted that the power of entrepreneurship and innovation lies in the private sector and that the state has to be cut back from the process in order to permit a burst of innovation and growth. Conversely, the reduction in the size of the state could translate into weak and non-ambitious economic policy that can damage the sources for innovation, greatly reducing the potential growth. However, another stream of research has recently challenged this dominant view by arguing that states could be leading drivers of innovation, especially when it comes to fund the most uncertain phases of R&D that the private sector may be too risk-averse to engage.

The Kurgan-van Hentenryk Chair in Business History tackles this debate in its First International Workshop focusing on the connections that already exist between present and past business developments, on the one hand, and innovation studies, on the other hand. Concepts such as ‘innovation system’ or ‘learning region’ are closely related to historical studies and analyse long- or medium term processes which have a historical dimension.

The workshop aims at bringing together outstanding scholars with economic policy advisers and business leaders in order to create a stimulating and intellectually challenging environment that explore the ongoing interactions of the “entrepreneurial state” and the “innovative enterprise”. The morning session will be devoted to keynote lectures given by Prof. William Lazonick (University of Massachusetts-Lowell) and Prof. David Edgerton (King’s College London). The afternoon session will program a roundtable mixing scholars, EU Commission experts, investors, and business leaders. The focus will be on current debates in entrepreneurship and innovation.

Workshop attendance is free of charge but registration is kindly requested by email at:



Workshop Programme


Salle Dupréel, Campus Solbosch, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium

44 avenue Jeanne – 1050 Brussels


Monday 8 May 2017


9:00                 Registration

9:30                 Welcome address by Pierre Gurdjian, Chairman of the Board, Université Libre de Bruxelles

9:40                 Workshop Introduction: Bruno van Pottelsberghe, Dean of the Solvay Brussels School of Economics                        and Management (ULB)

9:50                 Kurgan-van Hentenryk Chair Presentation: Kenneth Bertrams (ULB)

10:00               Keynote (I): William Lazonick (University of Massachusetts-Lowell): “Innovative Enterprise or                                    Sweatshop Economics? In Search of Foundations of Economic Analysis”

10:45               Q&A

11:00               Coffee break

11:15               Keynote (II): David Edgerton (King’s College London): “The British entrepreneurial state 1945 - 1979:                          too much of a good thing?”

12:00               Q&A

12:15               Lunch break

14:00               Roundtable: The entrepreneurial state and the innovative enterprise

Introduction: Mathias Dewatripont (Executive Director National Bank of Belgium, Professor of Economics at ULB)

Participants: Claire Bury (Deputy-Director General of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology [DG Connect]); John Taysom (Board Director Privitar, Visiting Professor UCL, Policy Fellow U. Cambridge); Frédéric Destin (General Partner Accel Ventures); William Lazonick (University of Massachusetts-Lowell)

16:30               Concluding remarks

16:45               Cocktail

Event Announcement: Managing Communist Enterprise, Rutgers-Camden, 21 April 2017

Managing Communist Enterprise: Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia, 1945-1970


A Symposium


Rutgers University, Camden

April 21st 2017

12pm – 2pm, Faculty Lounge (second floor of Armitage Hall, 311 North Fifth Street, Camden, NJ)


Philip Scranton (Rutgers, Camden)


Pal Germuska (EUI – Florence)

Natalya Vinokurova (Wharton)

Lee Vinsel (Stevens Institute of Technology)


The business history of communist eastern and central Europe has not yet received the attention that it deserves. This symposium is organized around a significant new paper by Phil Scranton, entitled “Managing Communist Enterprise: Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia, 1945-1970,” that itself emerges from a major project being undertaken by Professor Scranton and Professor Patrick Fridenson to examine the evolution of global business practices in the second half of the twentieth-century.  Based in extensive research in previously unused archives and sources, the paper uncovers the fascinating and often surprising story of management in three key European economies, essentially opening up a hitherto neglected field of study in business history.


Professor Scranton will briefly present the paper before we hear three invited commentaries, from Pal Germuska (EUI), Natalya Vinokurova (Wharton), and Lee Vinsel (Stevens Institute of Technology). Following a response from Professor Scranton, the final hour of event will be reserved for audience discussion. The lead paper and all three commentaries will subsequently be published in Enterprise and Society: The International Journal of Business History. 

Everyone intending to attend is strongly encouraged to download and read the lead paper in advance. Please note that in order to access the PDF of this unpublished paper, you will first need to log in with your BHC website credentials.


All are welcome. The event is free and registration is not required, though it would be appreciated if notices of intent to attend could be sent to Andrew Popp at All enquiries should be addressed to the same address.


We gratefully acknowledge the support of Rutgers University, Camden and of the Business History Conference.

Job Announcement: Tenure-Track History of Capitalism Position, U. Delaware

History of Capitalism in North America. The Department of History at the University of Delaware invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track assistant professor in the history of capitalism in North America in the “Long Nineteenth Century.” We seek a scholar of exceptional promise prepared to teach both graduate and undergraduate courses. Possible areas of specialization include race and ethnicity, business, political economy, and consumer culture. Preferred candidates will have research and teaching interests that complement one or more of the following graduate and undergraduate initiatives at the University of Delaware: (a) the Hagley Program in Capitalism, Technology, and Culture, (b) environmental humanities, (c) African American history and public humanities, and (d) material culture studies. Applicants whose work involves a transnational perspective are especially welcome. This position is also part of a commitment by the department and the College of Arts and Sciences to strengthening ties to the Hagley Museum and Library and to UD’s Lerner College of Business and Economics. The start date for this position is September 1, 2017. Candidates are expected to have the Ph.D. in hand by August 1, 2017.

The History Department at the University of Delaware consists of twenty-six faculty members plus faculty with shared appointments in Black American Studies, English, Art History, and Jewish Studies. The successful candidate will join an intellectual community of nationally and internationally recognized scholars. Because of the history department’s long association with the Hagley Museum and Library, the successful candidate will have opportunities to work in Hagley’s research collections and participate in its academic programs.

The University
Founded in 1743, the University of Delaware ( combines tradition and innovation, offering students a rich heritage along with the latest in instructional and research technology. Located in Newark, Delaware, within 2 hours of New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C., the University is one of the oldest land-grant institutions in the nation, one of 19 sea-grant institutions, and one of only 13 space-grant institutions. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching classifies UD as a research university with very high research activity. The University of Delaware has received the Community Engagement classification from the Carnegie Foundation. With external funding exceeding $200 million, the University ranks among the top 100 universities in federal R&D support for science and engineering and has nationally recognized research. With 23 academic departments, 27 interdisciplinary programs and centers, and more than 10,000 students, the College of Arts and Sciences is the largest college on campus ( The University of Delaware is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages applications from minority group members and women.

Candidates are expected to have the Ph.D. in hand by August 1, 2017.

Applicants should submit a letter of application, a current curriculum vitae, and three letters of recommendation. Additional application materials may be requested by the committee at a later point. For full consideration, please submit application by December 15, 2016. Inquiries may be sent to Professor David Suisman, Search Committee Chair, Application materials will not be accepted through personal correspondence with the Chair or other committee members; they will only be accepted through Interfolio®.

This institution is using Interfolio's ByCommittee to conduct this search. Applicants to this position receive a free Dossier account and can send all application materials, including confidential letters of recommendation, free of charge, through

For help signing up, accessing your account, or submitting your application please check out our help and support section or get in touch via email at or phone at (877) 997-8807.

The University of Delaware is an Equal Opportunity Employer which encourages applications from Minority Group Members, Women, Individuals with Disabilities and Veterans. The University's Notice of Non-Discrimination can be found at

Call For Papers: Techniques of the Corporation


“Techniques of the Corporation”


4-6 May 2017, University of Toronto

Technoscience Research Unit


Conference organization

Justin Douglas 

Bretton Fosbrook 

Kira Lussier 
Michelle Murphy 


How do corporations know themselves and their world? Over the last 150 years, corporations, like universities and laboratories, have generated an abundance of knowledge-making techniques in the form of psychological tests, efficiency technologies, scenario planning, and logistical systems. As dominant forms of the last century, corporations are assembled with instruments, infrastructures, and interventions that arrange and rearrange the dynamics of capitalism. These techniques of the corporation have filtered into our daily lives, influencing everyday understandings of self, inequality, environment, and society.

Techniques of the Corporation will assemble an interdisciplinary network of established and emerging scholars whose work contributes to the critical study of the techniques, epistemologies, and imaginaries of the 20th-century corporation. This conference aims to foster a timely conversation between Science and Technology Studies (STS) approaches and the recent histories of capitalism. We treat the corporation in the same way that historians of science and STS scholars have approached science, colonialism, and militarism as generative sites for knowledge production, value-making, and technopolitics. The conference takes as its starting place North American corporations with the understanding that corporations are multinational forms with complex transnational histories. Building from the recent history of capitalism, we attend to the entangled genealogies of corporations with slavery, exploitation, environmental destruction, colonialism, and inequality.

Hosted by the Technoscience Research Unit at the University of Toronto, this event will be an intimate multi-day conversation between established and emerging scholars in the fields of STS, history of science, and the history of capitalism. Techniques of the Corporation will be headlined by keynote speaker Joseph Dumit, and features invited talks by Dan Bouk, Elspeth Brown, Deborah Cowen, Orit Halpern, Louis Hyman, Michelle Murphy, Martha Poon, and Elise Thorburn. The conference will be an immersive experience in the Greater Toronto Area with meals and cocktails provided.  

We invite emerging and established scholars in diverse fields (including business history; labour history; anthropology; geography; economic sociology; media studies; critical race studies; architecture studies; feminist and sexuality studies; environmental studies; and cultural studies) to explore the techniques, epistemologies, and imaginaries of corporations. Our overall goal is to crystallize a new field, culminating in a field-defining publication. We welcome work on corporate practices that exceed calculative logics, such as work on social relations, affective and psychological states, and speculative futurities.  In addition to traditional papers, the conference encourages creative methods to query corporate forms, including art installations, videos, interactive multimedia projects, and role-playing games. Applications for travel assistance will be arranged after acceptance.


Corporate practices, include, but are not limited to: 



sharing economy 

data management 


risk management 

corporate culture 


corporate responsibility 




research and development 


corporate design 

intellectual property 



affective labor 

racial surveillance 


transnational capital


Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words and a CV to the conference organizers at by 13 January 2017.