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Title: The business and technology of the Sheffield Armaments industry, 1900-1930
Author: Corker, Christopher John
ISNI:       0000 0004 6351 3129
Awarding Body: Sheffield Hallam University
Current Institution: Sheffield Hallam University
Date of Award: 2016
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This exploration of the Sheffield armaments industry focuses on four in-depth case studies of John Brown, Cammell-Laird, Thomas Firth and Hadfields to examine the business and technology of the industry. It builds on the work of Tweedale and Trebilcock on Sheffield and armaments, and advances the argument that during the period of study from 1900 to 1930, the city was one of the most important centres for armaments research and production anywhere in the world. The business of the armaments industry is explored through an examination of the evolving links the industry had with the Government against the backdrop of an uncertain trading environment, and the managerial connections established between the state and private industry. Also explored are the collaborative, collusive and independent defensive measures enacted by the industry to counter uncertainty in the industry, through collaborative business arrangements and various approaches to entering international markets for armaments. An examination of the business of the armaments industry also highlights the value of the technological investment made by the industry. At the centre of exploring the technology of the armaments industry, a reconstruction of its technological history is undertaken using patent and archival records, highlighting the nuances and research dead-ends of development in the industry. Of central importance is the notion of spin-off and the interactions between armaments and metallurgical developments in the creation of a pool of knowledge to be utilised for future research into alloy steels, and the notion of path-dependent technological research. Also advanced is the concept of an innovation system centred on Sheffield, and an exploration of the important national and international links advanced by the industry.
Supervisor: Lewis, Merv ; Lloyd-Jones, Roger Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available