Job Ad: Lecturer/Senior Lecturer in International Business Management Grade 8/9

31 08 2015

AS: Come be my colleague. The University of Liverpool recently advertised this job.

You should have relevant research experience and be seeking to develop your research and teaching career in the broad area of strategy. For the lecturer position you should have some publications or revise and resubmit, or submitted to journals at least at 3* level. For the senior lecturer post you should have a good record of publication at least at 3* level with the potential to publish in leading business and management journals at 4*, and of obtaining research funding and engaging with the School’s impact agenda. Teaching excellence is also important at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. You should have have (or be about to obtain) a PhD in a relevant discipline and a Masters degree. ULMS has an interdisciplinary ethos that combines international business/management, strategy, institutional theory, entrepreneurship, HRM, OB, services marketing and crisis/risk management. This interdisciplinary approach to research is reflected in our commitment to knowledge platforms (KPs) which cross traditional disciplinary boundaries.

Job Ref: A-589300/JAC

Closing Date: 29 September 2015





Thoughts on the Case of the Queen v. Comeau

27 08 2015

For the last few days, I’ve been testifying as an expert witness in a Canadian constitutional court case that has captured the imagination of the country and which has serious implications for a number of key economic sectors. The court case is about the section of the Canadian constitution that declares that there should be free trade among Canada’s ten provinces. It’s rare for a business historian to be called as an expert witness in a court case. However, since my PhD thesis was on the role of business in the creation of the Canadian constitution, I’m qualified to speak to what the framers of the Canadian constitution intended when they inserted this section (s.121) into the 1867 constitution. My view is that since the creators of the Canadian constitution wanted to create a comprehensive economic union of the various British colonies in North America, the various laws that restrict “imports” of goods from one Canadian province to another should be considered unconstitutional. (This particular “test case” centres on the conviction in 2012 of a man who purchased some beer in Quebec, a Canadian province, and then drove this beer into New Brunswick, another Canadian province, where he was arrested by the RCMP).

I’ve been astonished by the extent to which the Canadian media is discussing this case (see here, here, and here). Last evening, Canada’s 24 hour news channels were abuzz with discussion of the case. For part of yesterday, our case was the most discussed issue in Canadian social media, ahead of the ongoing federal general election. Moreover, the topic has gone viral in ordinary conversations. As I write this I am sitting in a roadhouse in between the location of the trial, the tiny border town of Campbellton, and the nearest international airport, which is in Moncton. The other diners, who don’t know that I am involved in the case, are energetically debating its merit. One of the people I just overheard has speculated that if free trade in beer among Canadian provinces is established, the brewing companies will no longer be required to operate small breweries in each province. This individual, who appears to be of university-student age, is predicting consolidation and rationalization in the industry should the defence win in this trial. (The defence wants the court to declare inter—provincial trade barriers to be unconstitutional). His friend is talking about the implication for dairy products and the other goods that are currently fettered by internal trade barriers. The implication is that if inter-provincial free trade and a Canadian common market is established, a wide range of industries will have to be restructured. I expect that regardless of the decision by the judge, the case will ultimately make its way to the Supreme Court of Canada.

I’ve listened to a number of radio stations, French-language and English-language, during my drive today. Interspersed among the music and weather reports is discussion of the ongoing trial.  The DJs are also reference discussion of the trial on Facebook and other social media. A DJ at a radio station said “For anyone who is at the trial today, here is this song”. He proceeded to play a catchy pop song by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars called “Uptown Funk.” I don’t know how much meaning should be read into the DJ’s decision to play this song in honour of the ongoing trial.  It would probably be a mistake to ascribe any political significance into the verbal machine-gun fire that is commercial radio DJ blather.  However, I do know that the people in the local community I spoke to are uniformly in favour of being able to purchase beer in Quebec dépanneur.

As I prepare to fly back to Europe, I reflect that I am honoured that my academic research has been used in this way in a court case that has important implications for many companies, and individuals, in an important G-20 economy. My guess is that future economic historians may regard this case as the Canadian analogue of the Cassis de Dijon case in EU law. (That court case helped to create the European Common Market).

If you would like to read the Expert Witness Report that was submitted to the court,it will soon be available online.

P.S. I would like to thank the staff of the trial hotel, Campbellton’s Quality Inn, and Brasserie 1026, the adjacent restaurant, for all of their help during my stay in their community.





Britain’s Forgotten Slave-Owners

29 07 2015

The BBC recently broadcast a two-part documentary called Britain’s forgotten slave-owners, which is based on a research project at UCL that involved making a statistical portrait of the slaveholders who received compensation when slavery was abolished in 1834. The shows producers have  taken the admirable decision to put the entire documentary online, which means that people outside of the UK, including people in the countries most affected by the Atlantic slave trade, can watch it

The terminology used in the documentary is very much a product of our times. For instance, the compensation payments given to slaveowners are frequently referred to as “bailouts” and many of the scenes are shot in London’s financial district.  The documentary stresses the linkages between slavery and modern capitalism. This aspect of the documentary has generated considerable debate in the media was denounced by sociologist Frank Furedi.

It is interesting to see how the social memory of slavery is being used by various ideological movements for present-day purposes. History, as always, is being used.





My Panel at the 5e Congrès Asie et Pacifique, Paris 9-11 September 2015

28 07 2015

D5 – Engaging with Legacies of the Past: Creating Path Dependent Futures in Asian Business (Salle 14)

14:00 – 14:05 › Description de l’atelier / Panel description –
14:05 – 15:45 › Dating the End of Colonialism in British MNEs in China and India: Competing Systems of Periodisation – Andrew Smith, University of Liverpool
14:05 – 15:45 › Le marché des crédits aux consommateurs au Japon / Political economy of Consumer Credit market in Japan – Adrienne Sala, Japan Research Center (CRJ)
14:05 – 15:45 › Reassessing internationalisation: the case of Japanese cosmetics – Maki Umemura, Cardiff University
14:05 – 15:45 › RSE et connaissance du contexte local : un cas indonésien / CSR and knowledge of the local context: an Indonesian case – Anda Djoehana Wiradikarta – Université du Havre




My Talk in Banff

28 07 2015
"Banff, Alberta, Canada (230089894)" by Tony Webster from Portland, Oregon, United States - Banff, Alberta, Canada. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

“Banff, Alberta, Canada (230089894)” by Tony Webster from Portland, Oregon, United States – Banff, Alberta, Canada. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Are you interested in state formation, constitutional change, and sovereignty in North America in the 1860s? If so, check out the programme of the Rethinking North American Sovereignty Conference in Banff Alberta.

Masonic Lodge, Banff, Alberta

I will be speaking at the Masons Hall, 103 Caribou Street, in Banff, Alberta on Thursday, 30 July at 6:30pm. The event is free and open to the public.

Andrew Smith, University of Liverpool, “Confederation as a Hemispheric Anomaly: Why Canada Choose to Remain a Colony -draft July 2015

Steven Hahn, University of Pennsylvania, “The United States from the Inside Out and the Southside North”

Comment: Thomas Bender, New York University

This conference is sponsored by the George and Ann Richards Civil War Era Center at Penn State University and supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Virginia Center for Civil War Studies at Virginia Tech University and the following academic units at the University of Calgary: the Department of History; the Centre for Military, Security, and Strategic Studies; the Faculty of Arts; the Latin America Research Centre; and the Office of the Vice President for Research.





The Colonial Origins of the Greek Bailout

27 07 2015

andrewdsmith:

This fascinating piece discusses the colonial origins of the Greek bailout.

Originally posted on Imperial & Global Forum:

not merkel's colony

Jamie Martin
Harvard University
Follow on Twitter @jamiemartin2

When news broke two weeks ago of the harsh terms of a new bailout for Greece, many questioned whether the country still qualified as a sovereign state. “Debt colony,” a term long used by Syriza and its supporters, was suddenly everywhere in the press. Even the Financial Times used the language of empire: “a bailout on the terms set out in Brussels,” as a 13 July editorial put it, “risks turning the relationship with Greece into one akin to that between a colonial overlord and its vassal.”

Suggestions like these have invited historical comparison. One parallel that’s been mentioned is that of Egypt during the late nineteenth century. In 1876, as a heavily indebted Egypt approached bankruptcy, the Khedive Ismail Pasha agreed to the creation of an international commission, staffed by Europeans, with oversight of the Egyptian budget and control over certain…

View original 1,479 more words





Job Ad: Professor and Head of the Department of History University of Liverpool – School of Histories, Languages and Cultures

26 07 2015

I was asked to share this job advert for our university’s history department.

The School of Histories, Languages and Cultures wishes to appoint a Head of Department and Chair in History. The role of Head of Department will be fixed term until 31 July 2021 initially and will be offered in combination with a permanent post at Professorial level. You will be a leading researcher with an outstanding track-record of internationally excellent publications and ambitious research plans for the future. Experience of winning major research council funding and/or a proven record of securing other sources of research income and experience in organisational leadership is essential. You will demonstrate a track-record of innovation in (research-led) teaching and you may be specialised in any field of History. We particularly encourage applications from scholars with a specialisation in Public History or Medieval History, as these are two areas the Department is looking to strengthen.

More details here.








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