What Knowledge is Useful? > History
Video Clip — Alfred Chandler on RCEH
At Harvard, when I was doing my graduate work, I had the very good fortune to become a member of what was called The Research Center in Entrepreneurial History. And Joseph Schumpeter, a very great economist, and a very -- a chap in the Economics Department who was the head of Baker Library, Arthur Cole, started this center. And we’d had a lot of discussions and writing about innovation, and that’s -- I was attuned to that. And a whole range of young people were there. Doug North, who just got a Nobel Prize, and Henry Rosovsky, David Landis, a whole range of people, we had this wonderful experience.
And I had my most interesting course, or field -- you have four fields -- was sociology, where I worked with Talcott Parsons. And had that kind of -- which is sort of the base of my structure (functionally), and reading Max Weber, Marx, and all that, which I wouldn’t have gotten in history. So it was good to have that kind of sociological -- more emphasis, which historians don’t have, on trying to synthesize and explain.