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Science and Corporate Strategy
Du Pont R and D, 1902–1980


Part of Studies in Economic History and Policy: USA in the Twentieth Century

  • Date Published: November 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521028523

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About the Authors
  • Based on voluminous corporate records and extensive interviews with key employees, Science and Corporate Strategy: Du Pont R and D, 1902–1980 provides a comprehensive, critical study of research and development in a large US corporation. Du Pont was among a handful of US corporations that established formal research and development laboratories at the turn of the century to improve competitive positions in their respective industries. Initially, Du Pont's executives viewed R&D as an important though not central part of the corporations strategy. However the gains made by the company's laboratories soon demonstrated that R&D would be a critical ingredient in the firm's success. The industrial research and development laboratory became a major part of corporate structure; science became a central part of corporate strategy.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2006
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521028523
    • length: 780 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 155 x 41 mm
    • weight: 1.127kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    List of tables
    Editors' preface
    Authors' preface
    Part I. The Experimental Era:
    1. Organizing for research and development, 1902–1911
    2. Reorganizing and diversification
    3. World War I and the venture into dyestuffs
    4. Decentralization
    Part II. Creating a Chemical Empire:
    5. Rebuilding a central research organization
    6. Research to the rescue: Du Pont finishes
    7. Research efficiency: the organic chemicals department
    8. New fibers and films for a new era: the rayon department
    9. From nitrates to nylon: the ammonia department
    10. Du Pont R&D in the international sphere
    11. Development power: the case of titanium dioxide pigments
    Part III. 'Better Things for Better Living through Chemistry':
    12. The 'radical departure': Charles Stine's fundamental research program
    13. The 'D' of R&D: the development of neoprene and nylon
    14. Developing a discipline: chemical engineering research at Du Pont
    15. The conduct of research
    Part IV. Chemistry Enshrined:
    16. The war years and postwar expansion of research
    17. The persuit of science at Du Pont
    18. Making a revolution: Du Pont and synthetic fibers
    19. New directions in fibers R&D
    20. Biological chemicals
    21. Keeping ahead of the competition: Du Pont plastics
    Part V. Challenge and Response:
    22. The new venture era
    23. Successful diversification: the photo products department
    24. Toxicological and environmental research
    25. Redirecting R&D: the 1970s
    Reprise: science and corporate strategy at Du Pont
    Essay on sources

  • Authors

    David A. Hounshell

    John Kenly Smith

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