Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr

Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr

British scientist
Date of Birth: 15.09.1918
Country: Great Britain

  1. Biography of Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr.
  2. The Visible Hand and Further Contributions
  3. Legacy and Contributions

Biography of Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr.

Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr. was a British scholar and professor of business history at the Harvard Business School. He was known for his extensive research on the scale and structure of modern corporations. Chandler graduated from Harvard in 1940 and served in the navy during World War II. He later returned to Harvard and earned a PhD in history. He taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Johns Hopkins University before finally joining the Harvard Business School in 1970.

In 1977, Chandler's book "The Visible Hand: The Managerial Revolution in American Business" was published and won the Pulitzer Prize. In his research, Chandler extensively used the works of Henry Varnum Poor, a leading analyst in the railroad industry and the founder of "Standard & Poor's". Chandler's doctoral dissertation was based on Poor's works.

The Visible Hand and Further Contributions

In the early 1960s, Chandler began studying large organizations. In 1962, he published "Strategy and Structure: Chapters in the History of the Industrial Enterprise", which analyzed the organizational activities of companies such as E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, Standard Oil, General Motors, and Sears, Roebuck and Co. This work demonstrated that the emergence of managerial organizations was a logical development in corporate strategy.

Chandler continued to develop these themes in the 1990s with his book "Scale and Scope: The Dynamics of Industrial Capitalism". He later edited an anthology on these topics with Franco Amatori and Takashi Hikino. However, Chandler's main masterpiece remains "The Visible Hand". He emphasized the importance of proper organizational structure in companies, especially in the 19th century when new technologies fueled industrial growth. Capital mobilization required a larger workforce and management personnel, leading to the rise of administrative structures and managerial activities.

Legacy and Contributions

Alfred DuPont Chandler Jr. is considered one of the most talented contemporary business historians, along with Oliver Williamson, Louis Galambos, Robert H. Wiebe, and Thomas C. Cochran. While some prominent historians choose to ignore Chandler's works, his theories have been incredibly useful in the fields of business, sociology, and economics. Chandler was able to demonstrate that there is a fundamental difference between governmental, corporate, and non-profit organizations, challenging the prevailing belief among sociologists.