The Precision Makers: A History of the Instruments Industry in Britain and France, 1870-1939
Using a comparative approach, Mari Williams identifies the main characteristics of the precision instruments industry. She looks at the influence of rapid innovation, increasing state intervention, the growth of research and development and the provision of technical innovation, tying her discussion firmly in with the contemporary political and economic context. Particular focuses are the growing role of military requirements in shaping the industry. the legacy of the First World War and the influence of the arms race sparked off by the rise of Germany in the late nineteenth century. Unusually in studies of this kind, the development of the small and medium-sized firm is also examined in connection with the industry. as well as the development of organised research and the crucial interactions between the industry and academic research.
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