The group focuses on the following main approaches to business and labour history:
Simon Mowatt is co-author in the Oxford University Press monograph examining the impact of the technological change on strategies and employment in the industry.
British Vogue Editor Alexandra Shulman recently wrote supporting Yahoo's Marissa Mayer that working from home is not an adequate alternative to being in the office. Associate Professor Simon Mowatt, of the Business and Labour History Group, reminds us that the publisher of British Vogue Conde Nast was itself at the forefront of adopting technologies that revolutionised magazine publishing by changing work practices in the industry, and that the possibilities of remote contributors in fact led to a golden age for magazine publishing. In 1986 Conde Nast led the British magazine market by installing a centralised computer network, and developments in computing soon changed the rules of the industry and working patterns inside it. Future publishing, founded by Chris Anderson in 1985, for example exploited the use of new personal-computer based DTP systems ability to include external contributions cost effectively to grow into an international leader in a range of markets. By 1998 IPC, the UK's largest publisher, was able to publish Mountain Bike Rider mainly through external contributions managed by editor Brant Richards working from home, with many magazines being made up from 60% external copy. Remote working greatly changed the scope of contributions – rather than journalists many contributors were now part of the magazine's markets – mountain bikers themselves for example. This led to an enormous growth both in the amount of magazines and in the quality of specialist magazines through the 1990s. Whilst some magazines may still benefit from a central office location and working methods, the industry, its employees, and us – the readers – benefited enormously by the changes made possible by teleworking.
Associate Professor Simon Mowatt's book on the history of the UK Magazine Publisher history with Professor Howard Cox will be published later this year with Oxford University Press.
The market for organic foods has developed at different rates across developed nations, and affords an opportunity to examine how location specific barriers to entrepreneurship develop. Despite its ‘clean green’ image the organic market in New Zealand has been late developing, and has not reached a comparable relative size with other market economies. Read more.