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Processing the Future: Venture Project Evaluation at American Research and Development Corporation (1946-1973)

Abstract : This chapter is an analysis of the project appraisal procedures in place at American Research and Development Corporation (ARD) between 1946 and 1973, under the management of Georges F. Doriot. It shows the importance of knowledge technologies and administrative procedures in the way the venture capital company dealt with uncertain futures. The origins of these knowledge practices are traced back to Georges F. Doriot’s own views on business and more generally to the pragmatist movement in business administration of which he was a member. The conduct of project appraisal at ARD is then observed directly, and this reveals its reliance on a rich set of knowledge and diagnostic techniques as well as administrative procedures. These observations allow for a specification of the nature and role of imagination in the entrepreneurship and venture capital practices examined here—in particular, its close relationship with organized knowledge.
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Submitted on : Thursday, May 16, 2019 - 10:54:44 AM
Last modification on : Friday, October 15, 2021 - 5:20:03 PM

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Martin Giraudeau. Processing the Future: Venture Project Evaluation at American Research and Development Corporation (1946-1973). Richard Bronk; Jens Beckert. Uncertain Futures: Imaginaries Narratives and Calculation in the Economy, Oxford University Press, pp.259 - 277, 2018, 9780198820802. ⟨hal-02130928⟩

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