The Accounting Historians Journal Vol. 13, No. 1 Spring 1986
Barbara Merino, Editor NORTH TEXAS STATE UNIVERSITY
Robert R. Locke, The End of the Practical Man: Entrepreneurship and Higher Education in Germany, France and Great Britain, 1880-1940. (Greenwich, Conn.: JAI Press, 363 pp., $22.50, individuals, $45.00, institutions).
Review by O. Finley Graves The University of Mississippi
Locke's investigation into the relationship of higher education and entrepreneurial performance in Germany, France, and Great Britain during the second industrial revolution (1880-1940) chron-icles the accomplishments of German academicians in the area of business economics in the early decades of this century, accomp-lishments that not only resulted in a new business science but had a decided impact on German industry. Locke demonstrates that as early as the 1910s academic training and research met with a receptiveness among German entrepreneurs that remained un-characteristic of their British and French counterparts until as late as the 1950s. In Britain and France, rather, the entrepreneur con-tinued to esteem the practical man, the man who had received his training on the job or who had pioneered the first industrial revolu-tion, and to view with contempt the idea of any academic orientation in business. As a result, Locke argues, Germany enjoyed a con-siderable degree of growth in the new high technology industries before and after the First World War that Great Britain and France did not. It was the legacy of the business economics movement in German higher education, moreover, Locke suggests, that enabled Germany to bridge the economic chasm of the post-World War II years and reclaim its leadership position in industry as readily as it did. Accounting historians will find Locke's account of the evolution