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The Big End of Town
Big Business and Corporate Leadership in Twentieth-Century Australia


  • Date Published: May 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521689908


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About the Authors
  • Never before had a book been published which provides such a comprehensive study of Australian corporate leadership over the past 100 years. Written by a team of economic historians The Big End of Town, first published in 2004, is a proper business history of twentieth-century Australia. This book traces the evolution of large business enterprises in Australia, from the giants of the nineteenth century - such as Dalgety's, CSR and BHP - to the contemporary leaders in Newscorp and Qantas. It delves into why the market leaders became the major players, examines what was crucial to their success, and their roles in leading the Australian economy. By investigating their evolution this book provides a useful evaluation of the factors that have led to their competitive success and provides an essential guide for all businesses in Australia and beyond.

    • The only comprehensive study of Australian corporations over the last 150 years
    • Covers a wide range of industries including the telecommunications, pastoral and steel industries
    • Provides an examination of the major firms in Australia, their growth and reasons for their success
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… a very readable account of the development of big business in Australia … the subject is engaging and topical. … The writing is clear with an acceptable mix of theory to set the scene combined with case examples to show the success or otherwise of its application. … The book provides interesting case study material for business students, but it may also be useful background for public scholars or strategists … useful and scholarly …'. Public Administration Today

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521689908
    • length: 320 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. The development of large scale enterprise
    3. Identifying the corporate leaders
    4. Directions of corporate expansion
    5. Methods of corporate expansion
    6. Financing corporate strategies
    7. Corporate governance and organizational design
    8. Big business and corporate leadership in the Australian economy.

  • Authors

    Grant Fleming, Australian National University, Canberra
    Simon Ville is Professor and Head of the School of Economics and Information Systems at the University of Wollongong. He is editor of the Australian Economic History Review and author of several publications on business in Australia, including The Rural Entrepreneurs.

    David Merrett, University of Melbourne
    David Merrett is an Associate Professor in the Department of Management at the University of Melbourne. He is a consultant to the ANZ Banking Group and has written extensively on business in Australia.

    Simon Ville, University of Wollongong, New South Wales
    Grant Fleming is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Finance and Applied Statistics at the Australian National University.

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