Too many UK companies fail to see the point of history

ESRC logoUS companies take their corporate history far more seriously than most of their UK counterparts, according to a new study funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). American companies are more likely to draw attention to official published histories on their websites, more likely to invest in historically orientated visitor attractions or museums, such as The World of Coca Cola in Atlanta, and more likely to publish official histories.

The research was carried out at Queen Mary, University of London and is based on a survey of 36 British companies in the 2004 Fortune Global 500 ranked by revenue, 46 US companies from the Global 500, plus the joint British and Dutch companies Unilever and Royal Dutch/Shell Group and companies including Microsoft (US), Bertelsmann (Germany) and News Corp. (Aus). Researchers analysed websites, annual reports, entries in directories and, for a smaller sample of companies, published company histories.

Find out more about this piece of research from the ESRC website and explore similar Internet resources via the Intute: Social Sciences sections on Economic History, Business History and the Intute: Arts and Humanities section on Economic History.