Chapter 2 – The Industrial Revolution and the Role of Science and Technology in the Development of Technical Education.


The Industrial Revolution and the Role of Science and Technology in the Development of Technical Education.

“The greatest invention of the nineteenth century was invention of the method of invention” A.N. Whitehead.  Lowell Lectures. 1925.

This chapter will attempt to continue to set the context and background of this history of technical education by providing more detail about the influences and driving forces associated with the Industrial Revolution and the impact arising from the growth of science and the advances in technology on the development of technical education. After all it was the Industrial Revolution that highlighted the essential need to develop a national system for elementary/secondary education and equally important a technical education system. The Industrial Revolution inevitably acted as a catalyst/trigger for the development of a national technical education system although as this history will show the development was both faltering and haphazard throughout the 19th and early 20th century. One of the interesting issues during this development period was the heated debates about the relationship between science and technology especially in regard to how these subjects were taught and  their relative importance and place in a national education system.

Background to the Industrial Revolution.

The term Industrial Revolution was first used by Louis – Auguste Blanqui in 1837 and it was then widely adopted following a series of lectures entitled ‘Industrial Revolution of the 18th Century in England’ by Arnold Toynbee delivered in 1882. The First Industrial Revolution as it is more commonly called spanned the period between the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Many historians cite the period between 1780 and 1830 as the time when Britain witnessed the most rapid industrialisation activity although other historians define other periods. In addition a number of historians have argued that industrialisation occurred much earlier than 1780 and strictly was not a revolution but rather an example of gradual evolution. A number of studies using econometric techniques showed that the slow production rates coupled with low national incomes would indicate that industrial evolution rather than industrial revolution was a more appropriate term to describe the process. Other writers identified that there was a piecemeal development in processes associated with industrial innovation and in organisational structures. Clear evidence now exists that industrialisation was not the exclusive domain/province of Britain but included developments both in Asia and Europe.

There was a great deal of migration of European artisans and professional people into Britain during the 15th/16th/17th centuries bringing their superior skills and technological methods.  There was evidence of exchange and transfer of ideas, skills and technologies between Britain and Europe for many centuries before the first industrial revolution. For example the Dutch made significant contributions to the technologies associated with the drainage system in the Fens in the mid 17th century and later made significant improvements to water mills. Dutch and Flemish refugees played a significant role in creating the foundations of the development of the cotton, silk and other textile trades in England. France also made major contributions to blast furnace technology as did the Germans in improving the smelting and refining of non-ferrous ores. The French were the leaders in science during the 18th century and again made many contributions to the new industries associated with chemicals e.g. dying and bleaching. The exchange was certainly not just one way e.g. Britain helped Belgium and France to modernise much of their industry but most of the transfer of technology and effort from Britain was aimed at the USA. It is interesting to note that a number of Parliamentary Acts during the 19th century prohibited the emigration of workers into mainland Europe as well as placing restrictions on the export of machinery, spare parts, design plans and expertise. These Acts most certainly limited and constrained the exchange of technology and technical knowhow between Britain and the Continent. This aspect again reflects and reinforces the secretive and protectionist nature and practices of British companies, a point that will be picked up and developed later in this chapter.

During the first industrial revolution Britain witnessed a massive set of transformations in such areas as agriculture, demographic trends, manufacturing and transportation.  These and other changes had a profound effect on the cultural, economic and social climate of the country. For example Figure 1 below shows the dramatic growth in population between 1760 and 1901.

Figure 1
Year Population England and Wales Population Scotland Total population Britain
1760 6,736,000 (estimated) 8,000,000 (estimated)
1801 8,892,000 (1st census) 1,608,420 10,500,000
1851 17,927,609 2,888,742 21,000,000
1901 32,527,843 4,472,103 37,000,000

Another important transition occurred from around 1760 when the basis of the labour economy changed from one based on manual/physical labour to one increasingly based on machines. In addition the tradesperson replaced the craftsperson and the applied scientist replaced the amateur inventor. One consequence of the industrial revolution was that for the operation of the new machines largely unskilled labour were used. Skilled workers found themselves lowered in status and in less demand and companies increasingly employed women and children to keep costs down.  Coal was king as its production rose from 2.5 million tons in 1700 to 10 million tons in 1800. Three important technologies can be identified that formed the foundations of the first industrial revolution namely: iron production, steam engine and textiles.

The steam engine had been discovered before the industrial revolution and was subsequently improved by Watt and others after 1778. The steam engine was initially adapted and used to provide power for a whole series of machines and as a result was in many ways the most important ‘enabling technology’ of the time and as a result made the major contribution to the first industrial revolution. Steam driven machines were gradually improved, adapted for wider uses such as in the production of textiles and the mining of iron and tin  and this evolution continued to  enable the operation of more complex machinery e.g. machine tools, lathes, farm machinery.  The development and refinement of machine tools by such individuals as Henry Maudslay and Joseph Whitworth played a key and crucial part in the later phase of the first Industrial Revolution as machine tool technology enabled standardised manufacturing machines to be fabricated. A portrait of Joseph Whitworth is shown below.

Joseph Whitworth 1803 - 1887

The movement of manufactured goods and services was also greatly assisted and facilitated by improvements to the national transport system that included better roads and the development of an extensive network of canals, (from about 1773), and railways (from 1825). To illustrate the rapid growth of inland navigation systems i.e. canals and rivers in 1750 there were around 1,000 miles of inland navigation and by 1850 this had increased to 4,250 miles excluding a significant mileage that existed in Ireland.

As the national economy increased and technological advances accelerated and gained momentum the first industrial revolution converged around 1850 into the second period of industrial revolution/evolution.  After 1850 the rapid development of steam driven transport systems e.g. shipping and railways opened up new markets both in Britain and across the world. Later in the 19th century the newer technologies associated with electrical generation, the internal combustion engine and the industrial processes related to chemicals etc further accelerated and spread the growth of industrial and international trade.

By 1850 Britain was the acknowledged workshop and the leading industrial power of the world producing over half the world’s coal, cotton and iron. Imported food and essential raw materials for the manufacturing processes were paid for by the export of manufactured products as well as the export of a developing service sector including financial, insurance and shipping services. The country possessed the world’s most powerful navy and mercantile fleet and this not only helped to maintain the empire but provided the means to export its manufactured commodities. Sadly the transportation of slaves to the new world until the trade was abolished in 1807 also contributed to Britain’s wealth particularly to the city ports of Bristol and Liverpool.

Structure and the organisation of industry in the late 18th and 19th centuries It is appropriate to consider other factors, that have been raised by some writers, which they,  argued undermined this country’s manufacturing performance and ultimately contributed to Britain’s economic and industrial decline. Many of these factors again highlight the lack of an effective and comprehensive technical and commercial education system as well as the continuing negative attitude towards  competitiveness, entrepreneurialism, practical and technical activities. A list of some of these factors is given below:

  • The sizes of companies were relatively small and in the majority of cases family owned.
  • Management and organisational structures dogged by amateurism, complacency and indifference.
  • Employers often engaged in fierce and destructive competition with rival companies.
  • Incompetent and ineffective sales and marketing especially overseas. An unwillingness to develop marketing and sales strategies and tactics to match and satisfy customer needs.
  • The inability of company staff particularly the marketing team, if they existed, to learn and converse in foreign languages.
  • The widespread use of indirect selling and marketing overseas by agencies and agents.
  • The relatively late adoption, (after 1851), of a distinctive or ‘brand’ or product kite mark when compared with other competitors. Exceptions were in the china/pottery industries e.g. Spode and Wedgewood.
  • Reluctance to develop rigorous patenting techniques, when compared with USA, Belgium and Germany. This again highlights the tendency for English, (family run), businesses to be protectionist and secretative.
  • ‘The gentrification’, (Wiener’s expression), of the first and subsequent generations of successful business people who quickly adopted the mores of the upper classes.
  • The reluctance to adopt and invest in new manufacturing techniques and technologies and hence develop new products.
  • The reluctance to replace obsolete equipment and invest in new plant.
  • Basic hostility towards technical education especially outside the traditional apprenticeship schemes even though these were fast disappearing.
  • The relatively few scientists and technologists employed in industry. There were also shortages of qualified foremen, supervisors and technicians. This factor highlights two recurring issues and links with the inadequacy of technical education.
  • Low wages and status amongst workers as a result of no regulation or effective legislation that forced wages and conditions of work down. Employers were also hostile to the creation and membership  of unions.
Wedgewood Factory at Etruria

A view of the Wedgewood Pottery factory at Etruria is shown opposite.

Many manufacturing companies were family businesses and relatively small when compared with similar business enterprises overseas. In particular industries involved in the production of cotton, linen, silk were dominated by families. Small and larger manufacturing enterprises including engineering were also family owned and operated in such diverse industries as brewing, cutlery, pottery alongside thousands of workshops producing specialised products and artefacts particularly around Birmingham and Manchester. The culture of the family was apt to be very protective and secretive towards their manufacturing techniques and they were generally reluctant to cooperate and form associations with other similar based manufactures and this again was in stark contrast with companies in Europe. This secretive attitude was also evident in the way companies would avoid or be reluctant to register and patent their products for fear of plagiarism. This attitude impeded further development of a company’s products and restricted its product range and as a result this constrained the future growth of the company so maintaining the overall profile of small companies in Britain. Many businesses on the continent and the US took the opposite approach and many became very large with world wide brands and product differentiation which ultimately gave them a competitive edge over England towards the end of the 19th century. In fact this reluctance and propensity for secrecy about their industrial processes eventually became counterproductive as continental countries began to develop and manage technology in a more systematic way compared with England.

The relatively small size of the companies also had a negative impact on marketing and sales activities especially abroad. The home market was very buoyant and effective sales and marketing were relatively easy and this contributed to the culture of complacency and indifference but the overseas sales were very different and soon declining sales highlighted weaknesses in the sale techniques adopted by England companies. Because companies were relatively small they were inevitably reluctant to invest in dedicated sales teams based overseas instead preferring to use agents and agencies who also worked on behalf of other companies so no real loyalty and commitment existed with these agents and often there were issues of conflict of interests. As competition increased from continental countries and the USA the weaknesses inherent in the way sales and marketing of British products operated began very apparent. The USA and Germany developed networks of sales organisations dispensing with agencies and agents. The inability and resistance to learn and speak the languages of overseas customers, the reluctance to carry out market research to assess customer needs and the continued use of sales/marketing agents all contributed to the loss of market share from the mid 19th century.

Another factor that reflected weak management was the poor relationships that existed between workers and managers coupled with the opposition to unions and union membership that were strongly discouraged. Commercial, business and management education was virtually non-existent during most of the 19th century and was even less developed than technical education. I will consider the development of business and management education in later chapters.

Cottonopolis1                                                                   Glasgow. Industrial Revolution

Two typical views of an industrial site during the Industrial Revolution are shown above the one on the right is in Glasgow – note the high level of smoke pollution. One fascinating factor that reflects the basic hostility towards industry and technical education is explored by Wiener (1) and others namely the influence of class and social stratification. In Britain there had always been reluctance among the gentry and upper classes to send their sons into industry preferring them to enter banking or merchants’ offices. What is particularly interesting is the manner in which the first generation of successful industrialists behaved towards the education of their children. They invested their fortunes in massive country estates and did all possible to be recognised, accepted and assimilated into the upper echelons of English society. This most certainly included sending their sons to Eton or other public schools and Oxbridge and upon graduating they entered the family business ill – prepared to be part of the business lacking the necessary experiences, knowledge, skills and the techniques associated with the industrial processes, technological and scientific concepts and management of the business. Even more interesting is that many did not return to the business but went into the perceived more cultured and dignified environments of law, politics, religion and the other learned professions. The same negative view of technical/practical activities gradually permeated to the middle classes who readily adopted the mores of the upper classes and developed a distinct set of prejudices towards practical and technical pursuits, science, mathematics and technology. These negative attitudes still exists today. One only has to see the current problems with recruiting people in these subjects into colleges and universities. These deeply held attitudes and prejudices most certainly demonstrate the destructive effect of class attitudes and negative perceptions that persist even to day in some quarters of society.

Most company managers were reluctant to adapt and innovate and invested little in new plant and equipment. Having been the first industrial nation was ultimately a contributing factor in England’s decline, fuelled by degrees of complacency and arrogance. This created a culture of resistance to move with the times and overall industry failed to invest in new plant and equipment, develop new products and processes based on advancing scientific and technological ideas and reluctance to recruit scientifically and technologically qualified people. In the majority of cases companies refused to recruit highly qualified people  even though very few existed and many would often argue that a ‘practical’ person was preferred over a so-called ‘theoretical one’  Companies also invested little in research and development. This reluctance to embrace new industrial and managerial practices continued well into the 20th century. One classic case was the indifference indeed hostility towards the introduction of scientific management techniques. This approach was developed with great success in the USA but employers in this country resisted its introduction arguing strongly that workers were human beings and not machines and that there was no place for scientific routines or procedures in industrial and commercial businesses.

The role and interrelationship between Science and Technology and its impact on technical education.

Just as advances in technology significantly influenced the Industrial Revolution the development of scientific ideas in turn influenced technology and made major contributions to the first and second industrial revolutions. Indeed until the advent of the scientific era, technological advances were almost exclusively based on craft and trade skills and experience, personified by the apprentice model where the skills were handed on very much on a personal and individualistic level. The secrets of the craft or trade were jealously guarded and often shrouded in mystery. Chapter 3 will describe more fully the apprenticeship model before and after the Industrial Revolution.

However the most significant technical advances during the second industrial revolution (>1850s) were driven by science as well as by the demands made on technology itself.

One of the more intriguing aspects in writing this history is the identification of a number of perplexing and paradoxical issues, none more so than the interaction between science and technology and the role and teaching of these disciplines in the emerging education systems. This paradox has been highlighted by a number of influential writers e.g. Levine (2). The belief which sadly continues today is that science is seen as being a more superior body of knowledge than technology as well as the subsequent application of scientific knowledge and ideas. This perception of precedence comprised two directly related aspects, firstly that science always precedes technology because the application could only happen after the scientific discovery was made and secondly the view that science education was superior to technical education. Although the first assertion is valid in most cases it is not universally true. The application of existing technology can itself bring about the need for further and new scientific research and discovery. As existing technologies and machines are operated in different working situations the demands and limitations of the machinery and the underlying technologies often precipitate the need for more original scientific research. Therefore the belief that science is always ahead of technology and therefore is superior is a false one as it is clearly a two way iterative process i.e. science ≪=≫ technology. A classic example of how technology precedes and interacts with science can be seen in the development of the steam engine. As the use of the engine was diversified and applied in different situations fundamental design and operating limitations were identified that required further basic scientific research and this in turn challenged and questioned the existing scientific theories and hypothesises. In this case of the steam engine the discipline of thermodynamics was greatly enhanced and refined. A good example at present is the use of bio-fuels in cars that traditionally use petrol or diesel as the array of O rings and gaskets cannot operate in the new operating environment created by the bio-fuels. Therefore a whole new area of material science has had to be established in order to deal with the challenges of the existing technology. Other examples show that science and technology possess a synergistic relationship to one another and clearly feed off each other and that no one discipline is superior to the other.

However it was the aspect of this false belief that has been so damaging to the development of technical and applied education namely that scientific education should take precedence over technical education. This assertion most certainly had a negative and retarding impact on the image and development of technical education during the 19th century – one can also see these elements in play even today as the history will show later. The acceptance of this belief by politicians and decision makers meant that education policy at the time required the instruction of science to take precedence over the instruction of technical, applied and practical subjects. For example Alexander Williamson (3) an influential figure in education and a professor of chemistry at King’s College reflected this belief in his evidence to the Devonshire Commission when he objected to the creation of technical schools rather than scientific institutions saying “this does not give due priority to pure science”. This highly questionable belief and attitude was even held and articulated by some of the greatest advocates of technical education including Lyon Playfair and Thomas Huxley (4) who both voiced similar views as Williamson. The debate continues even today as evidenced in early 2009 when an enlightened government minister stressed the need to commit a greater proportion of the research funding for science to enhance the economic and technological base of the country. The vast majority of the scientific community, mostly university based, expressed their total disagreement with this suggestion arguing it subverted academic freedom and independence.

What cannot be denied is that the period from 1750 to 1850+ particularly during the Victorian period witnessed an exciting and productive time of intense research/innovation in practically every field of scientific exploration namely biological, chemical, mathematical, physical and technological. The Victorian period was particularly productive in adopting, expanding and transforming technologies in such areas as electricity,  industrial control engineering, lighting, photography, railways, steamships, telegraphy and telephony. Many of  these individuals behind these great achievemnets never received formal education by attending university or secondary schools instead they were self taught and/or possessed amazing creative abilities. This was the period of the first Industrial Revolution driven by steam. The second Indutrial Revolution from the mid-18th century was driven by the chemical, communications and electrical technologies which Britain did not fully capitalise on – Germany and America did!


The development of technical education during most of the 19th century had to overcome many prejudices and problems in order for it to gain recognition and credibility. Reading the literature shows conclusively that those resisting forces and movements came from all levels of society, the State and individuals. This resistance manifested itself as shown in this and the previous chapter through a whole host of factors and these were coupled with:

  • inadequate funding and support from the State up until possibly the 1860s
  • negative attitudes and behaviour from managers towards technical education fearing the loss of process and trade secrets if the workers understood the industrial technologies and techniques.

The next chapter will consider the importance of the Craft Guilds-Livery Companies, the Gilds and the apprenticeship schemes before the first industrial revolution and their gradual decline as the first industrial revolution evolved. Also the impact on traditional crafts and trades skills as the factory systems developed throughout the 19th century  contributing to the demise of the traditional apprenticeships will be explored. These transitions inevitably identified and highlighted the growing need to establish different educational structures to satisfy the demands of the emerging industries. One such development represents one of the most exciting and important educational movements in English educational history namely the Mechanics’ Institutions. Some of the key figures in the movement will be considered including John Anderson, George Birkbeck and Anthony Ure and other farsighted individuals who realised the importance of a well informed and trained workforce which led to the creation of the institutes. This will be seen as a period that promised much but sadly became a time of false dawns and missed opportunities arising from many of the factors identified in the first two chapters.

Picture of Anthony Ure shown opposite

Dr Ure

References for chapter 2

  1. Weiner. M. ‘English Culture and the Decline of the Industrial Spirit.’ CUP. 1981.
  2. Levine. A.L. ‘Industrial Retardation in Britain 1880 – 1914.’ Basic Books. 1967.
  3. Alexander. W. Evidence to the Devonshire Commission.
  4. Huxley. T. ‘Science and Education- Essays.’ Macmillan. 1905.

A comprehensive book list, chronology and glossary of terms is provided in separate posts on this site.





To add value to the histories I have included a number of appendices that will hopefully provide additional information and background about technical education and training and technical and commercial examinations. I hope the material proves helpful. I will continue to correct and add to these sections.

The biographies and pen portraits appear in a separate section under biographies and pen portraits. Additional material for this section will be updated and new material added.

The section containing articles comprises a series of pieces new and some previously published during the 1990s and early 2000s which have been updated on themes associated with technical education and training. I am grateful to the publishers for their kind permission to reproduce the original articles. In addition a series of views have been included.

Other sections have been created to add value to the site including data/statistics on examinations, colleges/providers. The latest addition to the site is ‘Counterpoint’ that will comprise a series of articles from other writers I am very grateful to them for their interesting and valuable contributions.

Updated and corrected August 2013

Chapter 1 – Introduction

I have undertaken to write a short history with a personal point of view of technical and vocational education, with a particular emphasis on work-based education and training. Bearing in mind the current debates about the importance and position of vocational education within the overall education system I feel an historical perspective could be useful for the following reasons:

  • In recent times very little attention has been paid to the historical context of our current quandaries/dilemmas over technical education and training.
  • It will hopefully provide a host of insights into this country’s current struggle to confront and tackle skills shortages and gaps and our ability to respond to and compete with the emerging global economies.
  • It will provide pointers to the lessons and strategies for technical education aimed at industrial growth that have been spelt out over the last 200+ years but which successive governments and educationalists have continued to neglect or discard.
  • It will illustrate the extent of industrial and economic decline both in relative and absolute terms in Britain over the past 150 years and what it would therefore be unwise to repeat in the future.

I hope that the history and analysis will be both interesting and illuminating to readers by providing additional information about this very important, fascinating and yet often neglected aspect of the education system.

This introduction will set the scene and provide a backdrop for the later chapters, which will cover the various historical stages beginning before the first Industrial Revolution up to the present time. One challenge when writing a history of technical education, say, when compared with the history of other sectors of education, is the difficulty of getting hold of the existing literature which is both relatively sparse and little referenced – thus again reflects the Cinderella image of the subject. Because of limitations of time and space I cannot hope to do full justice to this complex and fascinating topic so the major focus will be on England. Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland each merit their own histories reflecting as it were their own unique, fascinating and interesting past. The Republic of Ireland and graduates from Trinity College Dublin (see picture below) also made major contributions in astronomy, mathematics and the physical sciences. Trinity College, Dublin, was and is still a very highly regarded university and introduced examinations long before their counterparts in England. Also notable Irish individuals who made important contributions to public and technical examinations include James Booth (see biography).

Trinity College Dublin shown opposite.

Trinity college Dublin

England has never fully recognised the achievements and contributions that the other home countries have made to education including technical education, preferring to look beyond our shores, particularly to America and this approach still continues currently. This has been certainly true over the last few decades with the imitation of a number of work based models e.g. Training Enterprise Councils (TECs) which ultimately failed and again showed that the American system had little to offer. Interesting to note that Scotland and latterly Wales have for instance developed some very innovative programmes in vocational education and modular credit based systems which in many ways are more impressive than those in England.

In addition to the contributions to science and technology across the home countries I am also acutely aware of the contributions made from further a field both within Europe and beyond. One only has to read the remarkable and seminal works of Joseph Needham (1) on the history of Chinese science and technology to realise the significant contributions that this civilisation made to these important bodies of knowledge. China made an immense number of discoveries and inventions centuries before the European countries including gunpowder, the magnetic compass and printing. It is only recently following the pioneering work of Needham and his co-workers that the world has recognised these scientific and technological achievements. A remaining mystery is why China did not continue to build on these amazing achievements. Another outstanding example was the Khmer Empire, (now known as Cambodia), with its canal system and civil engineering feats at the Angkor Wat Temple. One must also remember the massive achievements to mathematics, science and technology made by the Middle Eastern countries and civilisations and the Greek and Roman empires. Also the Islamic civilisation (9th to 14th century) preserved, recorded and translated key works in chemistry, engineering, mathematics, robotics, science, technology. water engineering for future generations as well as adding further significantly to these and other subjects. The Islamic civilisation made massive contributions to architecture, astronomy, mathematics, navigation, science and water engineering creating a golden age of science. Their influence in Spain and Sicily laid the foundations for the Renaissance and the scientific revolutions in the Middle Ages. his period between the 9th and 14th centuries was a truly golden age for science and medicine  Charles Singer and this co-workers (2) in their seminal seven volume series on the History of Technology fully explored, recorded and acknowledged the major achievements and contributions made by these and other earlier civilisations. Singer and his co-writers in a sense paralleled and complemented the work of Needham by covering these earlier and other civilisations.

These perspectives always need bearing in mind when evaluating the directions and decisions of UK education policy.

Gradual economic and industrial decline and the inadequacy of technical education

One irrefutable truth that history highlights is this country’s gradual industrial and economic decline after the heady days of the first Industrial Revolution often taken to be the period between 1780 to 1850. There were a number of factors that contributed to the economic and industrial decline and these will be discussed in greater depth in chapter 2. One important factor contributing to this decline and one that is a major focus of this history was the long time it took to realise and develop a national strategy and system for technical education and training and the resultant failure to provide adequate resources to establish a network of technical education institutions. This failure was in terms of the number of technical/training institutions, their geographical spread, appropriate facilities and the low numbers of student numbers recruited. This failure meant that the growing demand from industry for these facilities and resources throughout most of the period covered by this history was not satisfied. One can identify this issue at all three levels of the education/training system namely:

  • at elementary school level
  • at university and latterly at the higher polytechnic level,
  • at the secondary and private/independent/public school level where with very few notable examples the teaching of science and technical subjects was non-existent
  • across the heterogeneous array of institutions offering technical education/instruction such as Mechanics’ Institutions, working men’s colleges and day and evening institutes.

Criticisms during this time also centred on weak institutional management as well as the quality of the provision and the ability of the teaching staff again at all three levels of the education system. Criticisms highlighted both qualitative and quantitative deficiencies. This state of affairs makes a poor comparison with other European countries even at the beginning of the nineteenth century. For example France, Germany and Prussia had already established technical universities in the early 1800s whilst little happened in England until the turn of the 20th century and then only to a limited extent.

Institutions regarded as the pinnacle of intellectual challenge and achievement such as Cambridge, Oxford and the private/independent/public schools continued to neglect science and technology providing instead a classical education. A few exceptions did exist in the public school sector e.g. Oundle, Shrewsbury introduced mathematics in 1836 and Rugby introduced physics in 1837 but overall they were few and far between.

The universities of Oxford and Cambridge were preoccupied with creating a national elite with an emphasis on liberal education. It was only after 1860/70 that industrial cities like Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester and Sheffield established institutions that introduced scientific and technical education at the higher levels and only through the efforts of such local business people as Josiah Mason and Joseph Chamberlain, William Wills, John Owen and Mark Firth. In fact universities contributed very little to creating qualified workers in technical disciplines until the final quarter of the 19th century.

However in spite of the lack of technical education at university and school level technical and scientific institutions were established early in the 19th century e.g. Mechanics’ Institutions, working men’s colleges’ that offered provision for artisans and workers. These were established by a few enthusiastic merchants, manufacturers and industrialists. The foundations of technical education and indeed the industrial revolution itself were based on the skills, experience, farsightedness and enthusiasm of practical individuals and the commitment and capital of a few successful business people. These will be described in later chapters and the short biographies of some of these farsighted individuals will be provided in a separate section on this website.

As already mentioned France, Germany, Prussia had rapidly established technical education institutions including universities in order to develop people in higher-level technical skills and knowledge thus creating a population of technocrats who would lead on their countries’ industrial developments and production. The English universities only very slowly and often reluctantly introduced vocational and technically related programmes into their provision. Many European countries had developed national systems for elementary/primary and secondary education long before England. However it must be stressed that Scotland within the British context was an outstanding exception – but more of that later. One of the few examples of Scottish influence on the English technical educational system was the adoption of the mechanics’ institutions movement into England inspired and developed from the Scottish model initiated by John Anderson and George Birkbeck (see biographies and pen portraits on this website). A portrait of John Anderson who established the first technical education in Britain is shown opposite and set the stage for George Birkbeck to continue the development of technical education in Scotland and England.

John Anderson


Some key historical issues.

This historical perspective identifies a number of recurring critical factors that have blighted and slowed down the development of an effective national English technical education system at all levels. Problematic factors identified include:

  • A philosophy of laissez-faire and the subsequent acquiescence into voluntarism across the field of technical education.
  • The reluctance of the State to get directly involved in the management of technical education guided by the principle that the State might subsidise but not direct provision.
  • Preoccupation with educational elitism which always valued the academic over the practical subjects. The education provision was structured on a hierarchical and differentiated system reflecting class divisions which basically meant different class’s experienced different provision. See the viewpoint on the Academic vs Vocational Debate on this website and the issues around parity of esteem.
  • The urge to push and subsume practical subjects into an academic subject culture i.e. academic drift.
  • An education system for most of the period covered by this history that did not create a culture of innovation and competition that are elements that are critical to economic success.
  • What some historians and commentators refer to as low social capability*, (see comments at end of this chapter), namely this country does not possess the ability or desire to more fully exploit existing scientific and technological knowledge. Social capability depends critically on the quality of education and training especially technical and vocational and its management. Social capability has an impact on economic growth of a nation.
  • Neglect of commercial/technical/vocational qualifications by successive governments and the majority of educationalists which reinforced basic hostility about the validity and credibility of the more technical and practical aspects of the curriculum. Over much of the period covered by this history no sustained or concerted effort was made to integrate technical and practical elements into the school curriculum. The crucial issue of how to achieve an effective balance between the teaching of general principles and the work- based specific skills remains unresolved even today.
  • During the critical period from 1870 to 1914 British employers many of whom were not educated in technical and pratical subjects were reluctant to recruit people with formal technical qualifications. They preferred to emply people were had ‘sat next to Nellie!’
  • The relatively late development of an effective national elementary* school system. Without this national system the subsequent stages were most certainly undermined, namely secondary, technical and higher education. A prevailing view that practical and technical skills were of limited value with little credibility and possessed little or no kudos.
  • Although the Victorian educational system may have created empire-builders, soldiers and administrators, it failed to produce great engineers. Because, in the minds of gentlemen, business professionalism was tainted with trade, the system produced amateurs on the model defined by Thomas Arnold in which high principles and gentlemanly conduct and a classical education was considered essential.
  • For most of the period under consideration no real attempt was made to define technical education – a classic example of this is to be found in the 1944 Education Act that did not provide precise guidance on the organisation of technical education nor any definition of technical education within the secondary school and further education sectors.
  • Arrogance, complacency, inertia and indifference among employers about international competition, particularly in the 19th century, which was largely engendered by the benefits of the empire and a false belief in the supremacy of their products. Matthew Arnold referred to the attitude of British industry as ‘blunder and plunder.’
  • The misguided belief that persisted after the demise of the British Empire about Britain’s greatness and the subsequent subservience to America.
  • The avoidance of warnings given by a succession of royal commissions, reports and influential individuals who had as early as 1851 highlighted future problems which in turn led to the failure to improve the situation.
  •  seems as if Intellectual Failure was and continues to be a permanent characteristic of successive British governments and many politicians. It seems if they never learn the lessons from history – expressed another way – do the same thing the same way and expect  a different result!

*Now referred to as primary education but in the 17th and 18th centuries would be seen as the beginning of the very basic elements of learning then available for the majority of the population. I will attempt to identify and systematically cover all these critical factors in the later chapters of this history.

These factors largely explain why such issues as the so-called academic/vocational divide and the value of parity of esteem between technical, work-based and other qualifications still plague and dominate political and educational debates even today. The divide between technical and vocational education/training continues to be ill defined and confused. No concerted effort was made to integrate/assimilate aspects of technical education into secondary education – the first real attempt was in the late 1970s and 1980s, namely the Technical Vocational Education Initiative (TVEI).

No one can refute that the education system is central to any society and that its effectiveness is reflected in a country’s strengths and weaknesses both domestically and abroad. Education and training is a fundamental element of society and key to its ultimate success in competing economically in the world. The quality of the education and training system both conditions and is conditioned by a wide range of interrelated elements including economics, advances in scientific, technological and industrial knowledge and practices, politics, social and even the religious cultures. This history highlights how these interacting elements influenced developments and attitudes to technical education at various times during the period before, during and after the first Industrial Revolution and up today.

Accepting that the relationship between education and industrial growth is a complex matter mainly because of the multitude of variables that are involved, should not deter us from trying to make the correlation or causation between these two key parameters. Cause-and-effect explanations can inevitably oversimplify the analysis and as a result can only hope to provide a partial explanation of the situation. A great deal of evidence shows that the rapid industrialisation in Britain in the early 19th century was not matched by any significant development let alone improvement in the existing education system. The Industrial Revolution, in many instances, highlighted the inadequacies of the education system in Britain especially in England. This mismatch is both paradoxical and perplexing as Britain did become the first industrial nation and at one time was acknowledged as the workshop of the world. Paradoxically the country’s success in leading the world into the industrial age was achieved in spite of the lack of a national education system and most certainly no effective technical education or training system.

It must be remembered that Britain developed a national school system late and before 1833, elementary education had been left very much to the church or private agencies. Grants for elementary education only started in 1834 with £20,000 a year being allocated by the government and by 1846 this had risen to £ 58,000 but this was totally inadequate for creating and extending educational opportunities for the working classes. It took even longer to develop a national system for secondary education to be established. The State took the first faltering steps to intervene in elementary and technical education in 1833 and 1853 respectively and only in 1902 did it create a national system for secondary education. Little wonder technical education suffered in the early stages of its development and that movements like the Mechanics’ Institutions struggled to survive with inadequate feeds from elementary and secondary schools.

When Victoria came to the throne in 1837 25% of children did not receive any instruction and as the House of Commons reported 49% of boys and 57% of girls between the ages of 13 and 14 could not read whilst 67% of boys and 88% of girls could not write. Only following the Forster Act of 1870 was compulsory education introduced and even then after a delay of eleven years was the Act finally enacted in 1881 did the situation gradually improve. The Act created a national system of elementary schools divided into school districts and the schools were run by school boards. Fees were levied for pupils and attendance was required by pupils aged between 5 and 13. Eventually in 1891 elementary education became basically free following the 1891 Education Act. Sadly the late development of elementary education coupled with the high levels of illiteracy and innumeracy and the lack of basic science knowledge undermined many of the early attempts to develop technical education e.g. Mechanics’ Institutions – this will be considered later. Obviously there needs to be an effective system of elementary/primary education in order to develop and sustain effective and efficient secondary and post-secondary sectors but the evidence shows that during most of the 19th century that this was not the case.

Although many historians have written about the negative effect of the inadequate education system as a contributory factor to the industrial and economic decline at the time of the Industrial Revolution other historians have presented a different view. West (3) for example provides a fascinating analysis of the relationship between education and the process of industrialisation during the 19th century. One aspect West explores is the reliability and quality of statistical data during the 19th century and equally importantly how it was managed and used by the governments of the day and as a result highlights the dangers of drawing conclusions or making judgements from the historical data. West carries out a brilliant analysis of the relationship between education and industrial progress but stresses the difficulties in gaining reliable statistical evidence in order to come to firm conclusions. He makes the distinction between demonstrated correlation and proven causation especially when analysing the statistical evidence and other information and how the government departments recorded and published it – so what is new! The difficulty of statistical analysis was even more problematic when attempting to make international comparisons in the 19th century because of the different methods used in different countries.

He argues strongly that a vigorous education system did develop in England during the 19th century but the inadequacy of statistics and often misinformation provided especially by the Education Department which was often partial and selective complicates any analysis. He concludes that the two revolutions namely the Industrial and Educational were interrelated and significantly benefited each other. Hobsbawm (4) also warns about the dangers of accepting ‘simple sociological explanations’ that many other historians have offered when attempting to provide explanations of Britain’s historical performance in the past.

Other perspectives and views have been presented by others writers referenced at end of this chapter who considered in detail the relationship between technical and scientific education and industrial growth and the influence of the English culture. Barnett (5) highlights the impact of successive British governments on their continued anachronistic commitment to a military-political role as a (supposed) world power. This aspect is demonstrated very effectively by Barnett (5) who presented very detailed data and subsequent analysis that showed how budgets were skewed and ring fenced towards military research and development that most certainly diverted essential funding from education, particularly technical education and training during the 20th century.

Another interesting example of how governments have exercised preferential funding has been identified by Wilkie (6). Wilkie considers the rise and fall of science in relation to government policy since 1945. The government’s commitment to invest heavily in so-called big science and engineering e.g. Concorde, channel tunnel, nuclear power etc with the resultant neglect to fund blue sky research and development.

Weiner (7) in his seminal book analyses and explores the area of the British class system and the prevailing culture and beliefs that demonstrated an antipathetical view of manufacturing, science, technology and most certainly towards entrepreneurial and competitive activity. The education system in Victorian times was instrumental in creating a national elite with its emphasis on liberal education primarily based on the classics and humanities. His analysis continues beyond the Victorian age up to 1980 and shows the same attitudes persist in terms of the negative view of manufacturing. Levine (8) makes the same criticisms about the negative views of industry pointing out the stark contrasts with the performance of other European nations. One major reason which will be picked throughout the history is the class ridden nation and the resulting snobbery towards manufacturing and manual work – academic subjects are perceived as better than technical subjects. Similar views have been expressed by Landes (9) who pointed to the ‘library of lament and protest about the failure of British educational institutions to turn out applied scientists in numbers and of a quality comparable to those produced in Germany.’

Bernal (10) brilliantly explores the subtle relationship between science, technology and industry during the 19th century. I will refer to all of these critiques in greater detail in later chapters.

English culture

A number of historians have provided a fascinating insight into how English cultural elements influenced industrial and economic life arising from the class structure, which has determined so much of English history. These writers have highlighted in particular the reaction, largely one of suspicion, of the upper classes to the consequences of the industrial revolution and the rise of the ‘industrialist class’. Interesting to note also that much has been written about the destructiveness of the trade unions toward industrial progress but the so-called English elites have proved far more obstructive particularly during the critical and formative period of the first industrial revolution and beyond. Weiner (7) brilliantly examines the economic and industrial decline in England and its inter-relationship and complex interactions with the social, political and psychological elements.

Britain’s industrial decline was first identified following the Great Exhibitions of 1851 (London) and 1867 (Paris) when it became evident that the country was beginning to lag behind France, Germany and the USA. Britain’s primary energy strength, namely coal, as the symbol of her industrial might was not sufficient to keep her in the lead as a manufacturing nation. Our competitors had more quickly realised that investment in people as well as plant and machinery was equally important and this was apparent when comparing products at both of these great exhibitions. The quality and range of products from our competitors was superior to our own and reflected the beginning of our decline. In addition it must be noted yet again that England was one of the few major competing countries that did not have an organised system of technical education. The decline accelerated during the latter part of the 19th century and throughout the 20th century as we lost the highly questionable benefits arising from the empire/commonwealth namely access to plentiful and cheap resources both human and materials and the protected and given markets for our own domestic manufactured products e.g. cars, fork lift trucks, machine tools, motor cycles etc. Even with the clear advantages afforded by that fact we created the first industrial revolution – it was evident by the end of the 19th century that our productivity was declining and we were losing our international market share in a wide range of products and services. Equally concerning was our failure to develop and exploit the newer technologies associated with chemical and electrical engineering. In addition the traditional industries like shipbuilding were failing to invest in research and development and replace machinery that had become dated and inefficient. One major disadvantage of being the first industrial country was that other nations could more quickly develop and introduce the newer industrial techniques and were able to invest in new plant and equipment.

One depressing and perplexing fact emerging from historical analysis is that even when the problems were identified no real action was taken to redeem the situation. Two typical quotes reflect the growing concerns about the quality and relevance of technical education:

“The excellence of the foreign goods is due, not to the workmen, but in great part to the superior training and attention to the general knowledge of their subject, observable among the managers and sub-officers of industry. No candid person can deny that they are far better educated, as a general rule, than those who hold similar posts in Britain.”
(Lyon Playfair 1867 after visiting the Paris Exhibition).

“…evidence appears to show that our industrial classes have not even that basis of sound general education on which alone technical education can rest… our deficiency is not merely a deficiency in technical education but in general intelligence and unless we remedy this want we shall gradually but surely find our undeniable superiority in wealth…and vigour will not save us from decline.”
(Schools Enquiry Royal Commission 1868).

A portrait of Lyon Playfair is shown below (See biography on this website).


Both of these quotations sadly reveal truths that are as valid today as when they were first stated. These quotations were made at a time when there was still no national framework for technical education. In spite of some worthy attempts to develop technical education and instruction e.g. through the Mechanics’ Institutions movement progress was painfully slow and no real vision was created by the governments of the day and more depressingly most governments since.


This introduction has begun to identify some of the key issues that will be explored more fully in later chapters. Already one is confronted with differing views about whether or not the quality of the education system, where it existed, particularly in the 19th century contributed to Britain’s economic and industrial decline. Although I am not an historian, after reviewing the evidence and having had direct experience of studying and working in technical education I have come to the view that it is the prevailing culture and class structure in this country over many centuries that has created a negative attitude towards technical and vocational education/training and this persists even today. I will attempt in the following chapters to justify this view. As mentioned above many notable social and economic historians share this view but this is my version based on my own research and direct experience of technical education from 1959 to 2001.

The next chapter will consider the impact of the Industrial Revolution and the influence of the advances of scientific and technological knowledge prior to and during the first industrial revolution. The impact of the industrial revolution will then be explored with the transformations that it brought about as people moved into the rapidly developing industrial cities and the growing interest and motivation of the workers to understand the science and technology that underpinned the industrial processes. The chapter will also explore the fascinating relationship between science and technology and the resultant attitudes and perception of the relative importance of scientific and technical education.

References for chapter 1

A more comprehensive book list is provided in a separate book lists.

  1. Needham. J. ‘Science and Civilisation in China’ CUP. 1954+.
  2. Singer.C. Holmyard. E.J. Hall. A.R and Williams. T. I. ‘ History of Technology’ 5 volumes. OUP. 1954+
  3. West. E.G. ‘Education and the Industrial Revolution.’ Batsford. 1975.
  4. Hobsbawn. E.J. ‘Industry and Empire. From 1750 to the Present.’ Penquin 1990.
  5. Barnett. C. ‘The Audit of War.’ ISBN 0-333-43458-7. Papermac.1987.
  6. Wilkie. T. ‘British Science and the Politics since 1945.’ ISBN 0-631-16849-4. Blackwell. 1991.
  7. Weiner.M. ‘English Culture and the Decline of the Industrial Spirit.’  CUP.1981.
  8. Levine.A.L. ‘Industrial Retardation in Britain 1880-1914.’ Basic Books. 1967.
  9. Landes. D.S. ‘The Unbound Prometheus.’ CUP. 1969. 
  10. Bernal. J.D. ‘Science and Industry in the 19th Century.’ RKP. 1953.

Other references that might be helpful:

Hill. D ‘A History of Engineering in Classical and Medieval Times’. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-15291-7. 1996.

Landels. J. G. ‘Engineering in the Ancient World’. Constable. ISBN 0 09 477280 0. 1978.

Masood, E. ‘Science and Islam’. Icon Books. ISBN 978-184831-081-0. 2009.

Williams.T. I. ‘A Short History of 20th Century Technology’ OUP. ISBN 0-19-858159-9. 1982.

Derry. T. K. and Williams. T. I. ‘A Short History of Technology’. OUP. 1960.

* Additional note.

Abramovitz .M. ‘Thinking about Growth.’ CUP. 1998. Abramovitz explores the interesting distinctions and relationships between growth and social capability.

Biographies & Pen Portraits

Biographies and Pen Portraits.

This series of biographies expands on references made in the History of Technical Education and the History of Technical and Commercial Examinations to the contributions of some of the key people who have influenced the developments of technical and commercial education.

Similarly, where key organisations were set up during the development of technical education, this appendix provides pen portraits describing their existence with further insight into their roles.

I have also included additional pieces on particular issues and periods that impacted on the development of the history of technical and commercial education and training e.g the Cockerton Judgement. Again I hope these add value to the site.

A Short History of Technical Education –Book References/Other Publications

The following set of book references and other useful references has been useful whilst writing the history of technical and vocational education and compiling the chronology and glossary. Many are out of print but most can be obtained via inter-library loan, via internet book companies or from second hand bookshops. In addition I have started adding seminal and important articles from various journals and other publications.  I have added ISBN/ASIN numbers when known some of these relate to later editions of the books. I hope the list proves of value to the readers. A key to the abbreviations used is given at the end of the list.

Corrected and expanded  May 2017.


Abbot. A.  ‘Education for Industry and Commerce in England.’ OUP.  1933.

Abbot. A and Dalton. J. E. ‘Trade Schools on the Continent.’ Pamphlet no. 97. BoE.

Abbott. I. Education Policy. ISBN 10:0857025775. Sage Publishing. 2012.

Abramson. M, Bird. and Stennett. A. ‘Further and Higher Education Partnerships’. ISBN 0-335-19597-0. SRHE/OU. 1996.

Acland. A. H. D. and Jones. B. ‘Working-men Co-operators.’ Longmans. 1919.

Acland. T. D. ‘Some Account of the Origin and Objects of the New Oxford Examinations for the Title of Associate in Arts and Certificates for the Year 1858.’ Ridgeway, London. 1858.Acland. A. H. D. ‘The Working of the Intermediate Act in Wales.’ Percival and Co. 1892.
Adamson. J.W. ‘A Short History of Education.’ CUP. 1919.
Adamson. J. W. ‘ English Education, 1789 – 1902.’  CUP. 1930.

Addy. J and Power. E.G. ‘The Industrial Revolution’. London. Longman. 1976.

Aldcroft. D. H. ‘Education, Training and Economic Performance.’ MUP. 1992.

Aldcroft. D. H. (Ed). ‘The Development of British Industries. Foreign Competition 1874-1914’. Allen Unwin. 1958.
Aldrich. R. (ed).  ‘A Century of Education.’ ISBN 0-415-24323-8. Routledge. Falmer Press. 2002.

Aldrich. R. ‘The Institute of Education 1902-2002: A Centenary History’. IoE. London. 2002.

Aldrich. R. ‘Pioneers of Female Education in Victoria Britain.’ History of Education Society. Vol. 54. pages 56-61. 1994.
Alexander. W.P. ‘Education in England – The National System-How It Works.’  ASIN B007ZIS1HE. Newnes Educational Publisjhing Co. 1956.
Allaway. A. J, ‘Adult Education in England’. University of Leicester. 1957.

Allbutt. T.C. ‘On Professional Education.’ Macmillan and Co. 1906.
Allen. G. C. ‘British Industries and their Organization.’  ISBN 10:0582480019. Longmans. 1966.

Allen. R. C. The British Industrial Revolution in Global Perspective. ISBN 978-0-521-86827-3. CUP. 2009. 9th printing 2015.

Allen. G. C. ‘The British Disease.’ Institute of Economic Affairs. 1976.
Ainley. P and Corney. M.  ‘Training for the Future. The Rise and  Fall of the MSC.’  ISBN 10:0304318612. Cassell. 1990.
Ainley. P. ‘Vocational Education and Training.’ Cassell. 1990.
Ainley. P. ‘Learning Policy Towards the Certified Society.’  ISBN 0 333-75034-9 Macmillan 1999.
Ainley. P. and Rainbird. H. (eds).  ‘Apprenticeship: Towards a New Paradigm of Vocational Education and Training.’  ISBN 10:0749427280. Kogan Page. 1999.

Ainley. P. ‘From School to YTS: Education and Training in England and Wales 1944-1987.’  ISBN 10:0335158471. OUP. 1988.

Aldrich. R ‘Education and Employment: The DfEE and its place in history.’ UoL. Institute of Education 2000.

Anderson. R.D. ‘Universities and Elites in Britain since 1800.’ Macmillan. Basingstoke. 1992.

Anderson. R. D. ‘The Scottish University Tradition: Past and Future’. In J. J. Carter and Withrington. D. J. (eds) ‘Scottish Universities: Distinctiveness and Diversity’. Edinburgh. John Donald. pages 67-78. 1992.

Anderson. R. D. ‘The History of Scottish Education, pre 1980.’ in Bryce. T. G. K. and Humes. W. M. (eds). ‘Scottish Education.’ Edinburgh University Press. 1999. pages 215-224. (See also in same book Bain. M. ‘Technology Education.’ pages 562-567).

Anderson. R. D. ‘Education and Opportunity in Victorian Scotland.’ Oxford. 1983.

Anderson. R. D. ‘Universities and Elites since 1800.’ ISBN 0333524349/ASIN B0141DEJKO. Macmillan Press. 1992.

Andrews. S. ‘Methodism and Society.’ Longmans. 1970.

Annals of Science. ‘The Lunar Society and the Improvement of Scientific Instruction.’ Vol. X111. 1957. Pages 1+.
Archer. R.L. ‘Secondary Education in the Nineteenth Century.’ CUP. 1921.
Argles. M. ‘ South Kensington to Robbins.’ An Account of English Technical and Scientific Education Since 1851. ISBN 10:0582323835, Longmans. 1964.

Argles. M. ‘The Royal Commission on Technical Instruction, 1881-1884, its Inception and Composition.’ Vocational Aspects of Secondary and FE.’ 11 (23). 1959.
Armfelt. R. ‘The Structure of English Education.’  ASIN B0000CJ6BT. Cohen and West. 1966.

Armstrong. H. E. ‘Pre-Kensington History of Royal College of Science.’ London. 1921.
Armytage. W.H. G. ‘Four Hundred Years of English Education.’ ASIN B012TYHUY. CUP. 1965.
Armytage. W.H.G. ‘Civic Universities.’  ASIN B0000CJ50R. Ernest Benn. 1955.
Armytage. W.H.G. ‘The Rise of the Technocrats.’ ISBN 10:0415853826. RKP.  1965.
Armytage. W.H.G. ‘Social History of Engineering.’ ISBN 571 04648 7  Faber and Faber 1961.
Armytage. W.H.G.  ‘J. F. Donnelly: Pioneer in Vocational Education.’  The Vocational Aspect of Secondary and Further Education. Volume 2.May 1950.

Armytage. W. H. G. ‘The German Influence on English Education.’  ASIN B012TR5MTA. RKP. 1969. (Armytage also wrote about the influences on English education from America (1967), France (1968) and Russia (1969).

Armytage. W. H. G. ‘Some Sources for the History of Technical Education in England.’ British Journal of Educational Studies. vol: v no. 2 May 1957 and vol: vi no. 1 Nov. 1957.

Armytage. W. H. G. ‘The Centenary of “South Ken”.’ British Journal of Educational Studies. Vol. v. no.1. Nov. 1956.

Artizans’ Institute. ‘Technical Education – An address to the Trustees of the Artizans’ Institute by Henry Solly.’ 1878.

Artizans’ Institute. ‘Trades Technical Education.’ Paper to the Artizans’ Technical Association by C. T. Millis. 1884.

Ashley Smith. J. W. ‘The Birth of Modern Education: The Contribution of the Dissenting Academies 1660-1800.’ London. Independent Press. 1952.
Ashby. E. ‘ Technology and the Academics’.  ASIN B000W41BRI. Macmillan/St Martins Press. 1966..

Ashby. E. ‘Education for an Age of Technology.’ Chapter in History of Technology by C. Singer. OUP. Vol V.1958. Pages 785+.

Ashford. D. E. ‘Death of a Great Survivor. The Manpower Services Commission in the UK.’ Goverance. Volume 2. Issue 4. 1989. pages 365-383.
Ashton. T. S. ‘ The Industrial Revolution 1760-1830′. ASIN B004BBPKD6. OUP. 1948 later edition 1970.

Ashton. T.S. ‘Some Statistics of the Industrial Revolution.’ Transactions of the Manchester Statistical Society (TMSS). 1947/48.

Ashton. T. S. ‘Economic Fluctuations in England 1700 – 1800’. Oxford. 1959.

Ashton. T. S. ‘Iron and Steel in The Industrial Revolution.’ Manchester. 1982.

Ashton. W. ‘An Economic History of England 1870 – 1939’. London. 1960.

Aspin. C. and Chapman. S. D. ‘James Hargreaves and the Spinning Jenny.’ Preston, Helmshore Local History Society. 1966.

ATTI. ‘The Extended College Year.’ Policy Statement. ATTI.

ATTI Developing Day Release. Evidence to Henniker-Heaton. 1963.

ATTI. ‘The Future of HE within the FE System.’ Policy Statement. ATTI. 1965.

ATTI. ‘Future of HE, Evidence to Robbins’. 1962.

ATTI/APTI/ATI issues a joint publication ‘Policy for Technical Education in 1932 and re-issued it again in 1937 and 1945 – strongly advocating more support and resources for technical education.

Aspin. C and Chapman. S. D. ‘James Hargreaves and the Spinning Jenny.’ Preston, Helmshore Local History Society. 1964.

Association of Principals in Technical Institutions (APTI). ‘Regional Coordination of FE.’ APTI. 1933.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Relation between Secondary and Technical Education.’ G. J. R. Potter. ATI Loughborough. 1933.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Relation of Technical Colleges to Local Universities.’ W. A. Richardson. ATI. Loughborough. 1929.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Day Continuation Schools.’ J. W. Gledsdale. 1920.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Junior Technical Schools , their Status and Position.’ C.T. Millis. ATI. 1921.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Place of the Local Colleges in Adult Education.’ R. Peers. ATI. Loughborough. 1926

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Craft Training and Certification.’ H. C. Haslegrave. ATI. 1948. Page 13+.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Technical Education and City Companies.’ C. C. Hawkins. 1923 (Annual Conference).

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Function and Work of the ULCI.’ M. Tomlinson and G. T. Walmsley.. ATI. Loughborough. 1935.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘A Descriptive Account of Technical Education in London.’ C. H. Gater. ATI. Loughborough. 1931.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Apprenticeships and the Irish Apprenticeships.’ ATI. R. R. Butler. 1934.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Education for Distribution.’ F. J. Stratton. ATI. 1938.

Association of Technical Institutions.   ‘Technical Secondary Schools.’ A. M. Gibson. ATI. Loughborough. 1936.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘Industry and Technical Colleges.’ F. H. Perkins. ATI. June 1954.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Trend of Technical Education.’ Doherty, 1948.

Association of Technical Institutions. National Colleges in Concept and Realisation.’ Symposium paper.  Gibson. T.J. et al. ATI 1951.

Association of Technical Institutions. ‘The Structure of Higher Technological Education.’ Jones. J. C. 1954.
Avis. J, Bloomer.M, Elsland. G and Hodkinson. P. (eds). ‘ Knowledge and Nationhood.’  SASIN B00NPMSN22. Cassells. 1996.


Babbage. C. ‘Reflections on the Decline of Science.’ B Fellowes. 1820.

BACIE. ‘Economic Growth and Manpower.’ BACIE. 1963.

Bagley. J. J. and Bagley. A. J. ‘The State of Education in Engalnd and Wales 1833-1968.’ ISBN 10: 0333000617/ASIN B 008040A3K. Macmillan. 1969.

Bailey. B. ‘Technical Education and Secondary Schooling’ 1905 to 1945.’ Manchester University Press. 1990.

Bailey. J. ‘The Co-operative Movement.’ The Party. 1952.

Balfour. G. ‘The Educational Systems of GB and Ireland.’ OUP/Clarendon Press. 1903.
Balfour. G. ‘Educational Administration.’ OUP. 1921

Ball. C. ‘Learning Pays’. RSA.

Banks. O. ‘Parity and Prestige in English Secondary Education.’ ISBN 0-415-17768-5. Routledge Kegan Paul. London. 1955. Later editions published.

Bantock. G. H. ‘ Education in an Industrial Society.’  ISBN 10:0571047912. Faber and Faber. 1963.

Barker. T. C. ‘Pilkington Brothers and the Glass Industry.’ Allen and Unwin. 1960.
Barnard. H. C. ‘A Short History of English Education from 1760.’  ASIN BOOOXZZUKA. 1947/1961.

Barnes. C. L. ‘The Manchester Lit and Phil Society.’ The Society. 1938.
Barnett. C. ‘The Audit of War.’ ISBN 0333-43458-7. Papermac/Macmillan. 1986.
Barnett. C. ‘Technology, Education and Industrial and Economic Strength.’ Journal of RSA. 1979.

Barnett. C. ‘The Collapse of British Power.’ ISBN 0-86299-074-2 . Alan Sutton. 1972.

Barnett. C. ‘Long Term Industrial Performance in the UK; the Role of Education and Research 1850-1939’. In ‘The Economic System in the UK’, D. J. Morris (ed) 1985.

Baron. G. ‘A bibliographical guide to the English education system.’ 2nd edition. Athlone Press. 1960.

Bartlett. C. J. ‘Britain Pre-eminent’. Macmillan Press. 1969.
Beales. H.L. ‘ The Industrial Revolution 1750-1850.’ Frank Cass and Co. 1958.

Bees and Swords. ‘National Vocational Qualifications.’ Kogan Page. 1990.

Beecham. B. L. ‘The Universities and Technical Education in England and Wales.’ Journal of F and H Education.’ 6 (1). 1982.

Belcher. V. ‘The City Parochial Foundation 1891-1991: a Trust for the Poor of London.’ ISBN 10:0859678792. Scolar Press. Aldershot. 1991.

Bell. V. A. ‘Junior Instruction Centres and their Future.’ (Carnegie UK Trust) Edinburgh. 1934.
Bell. R. Fowler. G and Little. K. (eds). ‘Education in Great Britain and Ireland.’ See M. Sutherland article. ‘Education in Northern Ireland.’ pages 19-25. ‘RKP/OU. 1973.

Bell. Q. ‘The Schools of Design.’ Routledge. ASIN B0037ZU58M. 1963.

Bell. D. and Napier D. ‘David Napier. Engineer.’ J Maclehose and Sons. 1912.

Bellot. H. H. ‘A History of University College, London 1826-1926.’ University of London Press. 1929.

Benavot. A. ‘The Rise and Decline of Vocational Education’. Sociology of Education. Vol 56. No 2. April 1983. Pages 63-109.

Benge. R. C. ‘Technical and Vocational Education in the UK: a Bibliographical Survey.’ UNESCO.

Benn. C. and Fairley. J. ‘Challenging the MSC on Jobs, Education and Training.’ London. Pluto Press. 1986.
Bennett. C. A. ‘History of Manual and Industrial Education Up To 1870.’ The Manual Arts Press. 1926.

Bennett. Y. and Carter. D. ‘Day Release for Girls’. EOC page 76+. 1983.

Bennett. R. ‘Training and Enterprise TECs and VET’. ISBN 0 853281122. LSE. 1989.

Berg. M. (Editor).  ‘Technology and Toil in 19th Century Britain’. ISBN 0-90633 6031. Humanities Press Inc. 1979.
Berg. M. ‘ The Age of Manufactures.’ ISBN 0-00-686019-2. Fontana Press. 1985.
Bernal. J. D. ‘ Science and Industry in the 19th Century.’  ASIN BOOABM3AVS. RKP. 1953. A number of volumes
Bernal. J. D. ‘The Social Function of Science.’ ISBN 10:0262520060. George Routledge and Sons. 1939.

Bernal. J. D. ‘Science in History.’ ASIN BOOOPKIFC. Watts. 1957.

Bernbaum. G. (ed). ‘Schooling in Decline.’ See D. Reeder article. ‘A recurring debate: education and industry.’ London. Macmillan. 1979.

Berry. H. F. ‘History of the Royal Society of Dublin.’ 1915.

Best. G. ‘Mid-Victorian Britain 1851-1875.’ Fontana Press. 1979.

Betts. R. ‘The Samuelson Commission of !881-1884 and English Technical Education.’ History of Education Society Bulletin. 34. 1984. pages 40-52.

Beveridge. A. ‘Apprentice now: notes on the training of young entrants to industry.’ Chapman and Hall. 1963.

Bibby. C. ‘T. H. Huxley, Scientist, Humanist and Educator.’  ASIN B0010H81HY. Watts London. 1959.

Binnie. G. M. ‘ Early Victorian Water Engineers.’ Thomas Telford. 1967.

Binns. H. B. ‘A Century of Education 1809 – 1909.’ London. J. M. Dent and Co. 1908.

Bird. A. ‘Roads and Vehicles.’ Longmans. 1969.
Bishop. A. S. ‘The Rise of a Central Authority for English Education.’ ISBN 0 521 08023 1. CUP. 1971.

Black. A. ‘The Owenites and the Halls of Science.’ Co-operative Review. Volume XXIX. Number 2. February 1955. Pages 42-44.
Blyth. J.A. ‘English University Adult Education 1908-1958.’ Manchester Univ Press . ISBN 0-7190-0903-0. 1983.

Board of Education. ‘The New Prospect in Education.’ BoE. 1928.

Board of Education. ‘Trade and Domestic Schools for Girls.’ BoE HMSO. 1929.

Board of Education (BoE). ‘A Review of JTSs in England’. BoE Educational Pamphlets. Number 111. 1937.

Board of Education. ‘Education for Salesmanship.’ BoE Education Pamphlet. 1931.

Board of Education. ‘Trade Schools on the Continent.’ Education pamphlet Number 91. London. 1932.

Board of Education. ‘Evening Schools’ Lloyds. S. Li. Educational Pamphlet No 2.

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Kitchen. P. I. ‘From Learning to Earning, Birth and Growth of a Young People’s College.’ Faber and Faber. 1944.

Kitson Clarke. G. ‘The Making of Victoria England’. ISBN 0 416 25180 3. Methuen and Co. 1970.

Klemm. F. ‘A History of Western Technology’. Scientific Book Guild/George Allen and Unwin Ltd. 1959.

Knellor. G.F. ‘Higher Learning in Britain.’ University of California. 1955.

Knowles. L. C. A. ‘The Industrial and Commercial Revolutions in GB during the 19th Century.’ Routledge and Kegan Paul. London. 1966. Later edition Sagwan Press ISBN 10:1298971527.
Kogan. M. and Packwood.T. ‘Advisory Councils and Committees in Education.’ ISBN 0 7100 79591. RKP. 1974.



LaLachlan. H. ‘English Education under the Test acts being the history of Non-Conformist academies.’ Manchester University Press. 1931.

Landes. D.S. ‘The Unbound Prometheus.’ ISBN 0 521 09418 6. CUP. 1969.

Landels. J. G. ‘Engineering in the Ancient World’. ISBN 0 09 477280. Constable. 1997.

Lane. J. ‘Apprenticeship in England 1600-1914.’ ISBN 10:1857282493. UCL. London. 1996.
Lang. J. ‘City and Guilds of London Institute Centenary 1878 – 1978.’  ASIN B007LL7B7Q. CGLI. 1978.
Langford. P and Harvie. C. ‘The Oxford History of Britain.’ Volume IV. OUP. 1992.

Latham. H. ‘On the Action of Examinations Considered as a Means of Selection.’ Deighton Bell and Sons.Cambrodge. 1877.
Lawrence. B. ‘The Administration of Education in Britain.’ ISBN 0 7134 0963 0. B T Batsford Ltd. 1972.

Lawrence. I. ‘Power and Politics at the Department of Education and Science’. ISBN 10:0304326070. Continuum Publications. 1992.
Lawson. J. and Silver. H. ‘A Social History of Education in England.’ ISBN 416 08680 3/ASIn B0032Q8PSS. Methuen and C0. 1973. Later edition  ISBN 10:0415761727. Routledge. 2014.
Layton. D. ‘Science for the People.’ ISBN 004 507001 6. George Allen and Unwin Ltd. 1973.

LCC. ‘The Literary Institutes of London. A Phase in Adult Education.’ LCC publication.

Leese. J. ‘Examinations in FE.’ Technical Education and Industrial Training. vol7. no. 5. May 1965. Pages 206-207,
Lester Smith.W.O. ‘Education – an introductory survey.’ Penguin.1971.
Lester Smith.W.O. ‘Education in GB.’ OUP. 1967.
Lester Smith.W.O. ‘Government and Education.’ Penguin Books. 1971.
Levine. A.L. ‘Industrial Retardation in Britain 1880-1914.’  67-21085. Basic Books.1967.

Lewis. R. and Maude. A. ‘Professional People’. Phoenix House Ltd. 1952.
Lewis.J. L. (Ed). ‘125 Years. The Physical Society. The Institute of Physics’ . ISBN 0 7503 0609 2. The Institute of Physics Publishing. 1999.

Liepmann. K. ‘Apprenticeship – An Essay into its Adequacy under Modern Conditions.’ ASIN B000CKHIF. Routledge and Kegan Paul. 1960.

Lewis. R and Maude. A. ‘Professional People.’ ISBN 10:1163813400. Phoenix House. 1952.

Lindsay. K. ‘Social Progress and Educational Wastage.’ Routledge. 1926.

Lindsay. J. ‘A History of the North Wales Slate Industry.’ David and Charles. 1974.

Lines. C. ‘Companion to the Industrial Revolution.’ ISBN 0-8160-2156-0. Facts On File. 1990.
Lipson. E. ‘The Growth of English Society.’ Adam and Charles Black. 1959.

Liepmann. K. ‘Apprenticeship: An Enquiry into its Adequacy under Modern Conditions.’ London. RKP. 1960.

Little. B. (ed). ‘Vocational HE: Does it meet employers’ needs?’ London. Learning and Skills Development Agency. 2003.

Little. A. J. ‘Deceleration of the 18th Century British Economy.’ London. 1976.

Livery Companies. ‘Report on Technical Education.’ W. Trounce. London. 1878.

Livery Companies. ‘Technical Education – Report to the General Committee of Certain of the Livery Companies of London.’ January 1879.

Livingstone. R. W. ‘The Future of Education.’ CUP. 1940.

Llewellyn Davies. J. ‘The Working Men’s College 1854-1904.’ Macmillan and Co. Ltd. 1904.

Llewellyn Smith. H. ‘Report to the Special Committee on Technical Education.’ London County Council. 1892.
Lockyer. N and Haldane. R.B. ‘Education and National Progress: Essays and Addresses 1870-1905.’ Macmillan and Co. 1906. (Interesting chapter on technical education).

London County Council. ‘Trade and Technical Education in Germany and France’. London. 1914.

London Institution. ‘Historical Account of the London Institution.’ London. 1835.

Longmate. N. ‘The Workhouse.’ Temple and Smith. 1974.

Longworth. N and Davies. W. K. ‘Lifelong Learning’. ISBN 0 7494 19725 Kogan Page. 1996.
Lowndes. G. A. N. ‘The English Education System.’ ISBN 10-0090224507. Hutchinson University Library. 1960.
Lowndes. G. A. N. ‘The Silent Social Revolution 1895-1965.’  B00161JBE. OUP. 1969.

Ludlow. J. M. and Jones. Ll. ‘Progress of the Working Class 1832-1867.’ London. Strahan. 1867.

Lyon. H. ‘The Royal Society 1660-1940’. CUP. 1944.



Macaulay. J. M. (ed). ‘John Anderson, Pioneer of Technical Education and the College is Founded.’ Glasgow. 1950.

Macfarlane. E. ‘Education 16-19; in transition’. Routledge. 1993.

MacLeod. C. ‘Heroes of Invention. Technology, Liberalism and British Identity’. ISBN 10:0521873703. CUP. 2007.

MacLeod. R. ‘Days of Judgement –Science, Examinations and the Organisation of Knowledge in Late Victorian England.’ ISBN 090 5484 150. Nafferton Books/Driffield. 1982.
Macgregor. D.H. ‘ Evolution of Industry.’ William and Norgate. No date.

Macleod. C. ‘ Inventing the Industrial Revolution. The English Patents System 1660-1800’. CUP. 1988.

MacLennan. A. ‘Technical Teaching and Instruction’. Oldbourne London. 1963.

McCloskey. D. N. ‘Did Britain Fail?’ Economic History Review. 2nd edition. 1970.

McCloskey. D. N. (Ed). ‘Essays on a Mature Economy Britain after 1840’. Methuen. 1971.
Maclure. J. S. ‘Educational Documents – 1816 to 1967.’  Various editions.  SBN 412 07960 7. Chapman and Hall Ltd. 1968.

Maclure. S. ‘Missing Links; the challenge to further education’.  ISBN 10-085374110. London Policy Studies Institute. 1991.
Maclure. S. et al.  ‘Studies in the Government and Control of Education Since 1860.’SBN 416 15380 1. Methuen and Co. 1970.

Mackinnon. D and Statham. J. ‘Education in the UK. Facts and Figures.’  ISBN 10-0340730293. Hodder and Stoughton/OU. London. 1999.

Mackintosh. H. ‘Education in Scotland Yesterday and Today.’ ASIN B007119FZA. Glasgow Gibson. 1962.

Macmillian. N. D. and Nudds. J.R. ‘Science in Ireland 1800-1930’. ISBN 0 9513586 1 8.Trinity College Dublin.

McNeill. I. ‘Joseph Bramah.’ David and Charles. 1968.

McKie. D. ‘The Origins of the Royal Society of London.’ Notes and Records of the Royal Society of London. Vol.15 Tercentenary July 1960.

MacRaild. D. M. and Martin. D. E. ‘Labour in British Society 1830-1914.’ ISBN 0-333-73159-X. Macmillan Press. 2000.

McCulloch. G. ‘The Secondary Technical School.  A Useable Past?’ Falmer Press.1989.

McCulloch. G. ‘School Science and Technology in the 19th and 20th Century: A Guide to Published Sources.’ Studies in Science Education. 14. 1987. Pages 1-32.
Magnus. P. ‘Education and Aims and Effects 1880-1910.’ Longmans Green and Co. 1910.
Magnus. P. ‘Industrial Education.’ Kegan Paul, Trench and Co. 1888.
Magnus. P. ‘ Technical Education; Its Progress and Prospects.’ JSoA. 1893.
Mansfield. A. ‘The Adventure in Working – Class Education.’ Longman Green and Co. 1920.

Martin. T. ‘The Royal Institution.’ Longman. Green. 1942.
Mathias. P. ‘The First Industrial Nation 1700-1914’. Methuen.  ISBN 0 416 02910 8/0415 – 02756-X. 1969.

Mathias. P. ‘Who Unbound Prometheus? Science and Technical Change , 1600-1800.’ in A.E. Musson (ed). Science, Technology and Economic Growth in the 18th Century.’ London. 1972. pages 69-96.

Mathias. P. ‘The First Industrial Nation. The Economic History of Britain 1700-1914’ 2nd Edition (Much enlarged) ISBN 0-415-02756 X .Routledge 1993.

Mathias. P. ‘Science and Society 1600-1900.’  In particular an excellent account of resources of science in Victorian times by R MacLeod (ed). ISBN 10:0521077273. CUP 1972.

Matt. R. A. ‘Abraham Darby (I and II) and the Coal-Iron Industry.’ Transactions of the Newcomen Society. Vol. 31. p 49-93. 1957/59.

Mansbridge. A. ‘An Adventure in Working-Class Education’. Longmans. 1920.

Mantoux. P. ‘The Industrial Revolution in the 18th Century.’ Johnathan Cape. 1927.

McCloskey. D. N. ‘Enterprise and Trade in Victorian Britain’. ISBN 0-04-942171-9. George Allen and Unwin. 1981.

McCulloch. G, Jenkins. E and Layton. D. ‘Technological Revolution? The Politics of School Science and Technology in England and Wales since 1945.’ Falmer Press. Lewes. 1985.

McCulloch. G. ‘The Secondary Technical School. A Usable Past.’ Falmer Press. London. 1989.
McCulloch. G. (ed). ‘History of Education.’ ISBN 0 415 34570. Routledge. 2005.

McCulloch. G. ‘Educational Reconstruction 1944 Education Act and the 21st Century. ISBN 10:071304019 X. Routledge.

McCulloch. G. Jenkins E. and Layton. D. ‘Technological Revolution? The Politics of school science and technology in England. ISBN 10 185000042.  Routledge/Falmer Press. 1985.

Macfarlane. E. ‘Education 16-19 in Transition.’ London. Routledge. 1993.

Mclachlan. P. ‘English Education Under the Test Acts.’ Manchester University Press. 1931.

MacLeod. R. M. ‘The X-Club. A Social Network of Scientists in Late Victorian England’ Notes and Records of the Royal Society. XXIV. April 1970. page 181.

McNally. F. ‘Women for Hire’. Macmillan Press Ltd. 1978.

Mander. F. ‘Post-primary Schools in Relation to Industry.’ NUT 1927.

Martin. T. ‘The Riyal Institution’. Longmans. Green. 1942.

Marwick. W. H. ‘Early Adult Education in Edinburgh.’ Journal of Adult Education. Vol. V. no. 4. April 1932.

Masood.E. ‘Science and Islam’. ISBN 978-184831-081-0. Icon Books Ltd. 2000.

Mathematical Association. ‘The Teaching of Mathematics in Technical Schools and Colleges.’ M.A. Benn. 1949.

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Maurice. F. ‘The Life of Fredrick Denison Maurice.’ Macmillan and Co. 1884.

McCord. N. ‘British History 1815 – 1906’. ISBN 0 19 822858 9. OUP. 1991.

McNeill I. ‘Joseph Braham.’ David and Charles. 1968.

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Meadows. J. ‘The Victorian Scientist. The Growth of a Profession’. ISBN 0 7123 08946. British Library.  2004.

Meenan. J. and Clarke. D. ‘The Royal Dublin Society 1731-1781.’ Dublin. 1981.

Melville. H.  ‘The Department of Scientific and Industrial Research.’ ASIN B0007K0A40. Allen and Unwin. 1962.

Meredith. H. O. ‘Outline of the Economic History of England.’ Isaac Pitman and Sons. London. Date unknown.

Merson. M. ‘The four ages of TVEI: a review of policy.’ British Journal of Education and Work. 5(2). 1992. pages 5-18.

Meteyard. E. ‘Life of Josiah Wedgewood.’ 2 volumes. London. 1865/1866.

Metraux. G and Crouzet. F. ‘The Evolution of Science.’  63-18009. Mentor Book for UNESCO. 1963.

Metraux.G and Crouzet. F. ‘The 19th Century World; readings in the History of Mankind.’ Mentor book for UNESCO.
Meyer. A.E. ‘An Educational History of the Western World.’ 79-178930. McGraw-Hill. 1972.

Milward. A. S. and Saul. S. B. ‘ The Economic Development of Continental Europe -1780-1870’. ISBN 0-04-330299 -8. George Allen and Unwin. 1973.
Midwinter. E. ‘19th Century Education.’ SBN 582 31391-0. Longman. 1970.
Millerson. G. ‘The Qualifying Associations.’ Routledge and Kegan Paul. 1964.
Millis. C.T. ‘ Technical Education. Its Development and Aims.’ Edward Arnold and Co. 1925.
Millis. S. T. ‘Education for Trade and Industries.’ Edward Arnold. 1932.
Mills. J. ‘What is Industrial and Technical Education.’ London. 1871.

Milward. A. S. and Saul. S. B. ‘The Economic Development of Continental Europe 1780-1870. ISBN 0-04-330299-8. George Allen and Unwin. 1979.

Mitchell. B. R. and Deane. P. ‘Abstract of British Historical Statistics.’ ISBN 10:0521057388. CUP. 1962.

MoE. ‘Further Education.’ MoE Pamphlet No. 8. 1947.

MoE. ‘Liberal Education in Technical Colleges’. May 1957.

MoL. ‘Report of an Inquiry into Apprenticeship and Training. History of Apprenticeship. Pre-War Apprenticeship 1814-1914.’ London. HMSO. 1928.

MoL. ‘Report of an Inquiry into Apprenticeship and Training for Skilled Occupations in GB and NI.’ London. HMSO. 1928.

Moore. T. S. and Phillip J. C. ‘The Chemical Society 1841-1941.’ London. 1947.

More. C. ‘Skill and the English Working Class’ London. Croom Helm.1980.

More Smith, G. C. ‘The Story of the Peoples College Sheffield.’ Sheffield. 1912.

Monroe. P. ‘A Text-Book in the History of Education’ Macmillan Co. 1906.

Montague. F. C. ‘Technical Education: A Summary of the Report of the Royal Commission Appointed to Inquire into State of Technical Education.’  Cassell and Company. London. 1887.

Montgomery. R. J. ‘ Examinations.’ Longmans. ISBN 10:0582324130. 1965.

Moore Smith. G.C. ‘The Story of the People’s College Sheffield 1842-1878.’ Sheffield. 1912. Pages 24+.

More. C. ‘Skills and the English Working Class 1870-1914.’ London. Croom Helm. 1980.

More. C. ‘Understanding the Industrial Revolution.’ London. Routledge. 2000.

Morgan. A. ‘Rise and Progress of Scottish Education.’ Oliver and Boyd. 1927.
Morgan. K.O. ‘The Oxford History of Britain.’ ISBN 0-19-285266-3. OUP. 1988.
Morris. N. ‘State paternalism and laissez-faire in the 1860s, Studies in the Government and Control of Education since 1860.’ Methuen. 1970.
Morrish. I. ‘ Education Since 1800.’ Routledge/Allen and Unwin.  ISBN 13 978-0415432672/10: 041576174. 1970. Various editions.

Morrison. P and Morrison. E. ‘Charles Babbage and his Calculating Machines’. Dover Publications Ltd. 1961.

Mott. R. A. ‘Henry Cort: The Great Finer Creator f Puddled Iron.’ Metals Society. 1983.

Muller. D and Furnell. P. ; Delivering Quality in Vocational Education.’ London. Kogan Page, 1991.

Mumford. D. E. ‘The image of technical education.’ Vocational Aspects of Education. Volume XV No 31. 1963.

Murphy. B. ‘A History of the British Economy 1740-1970.’ ISBN 0 582 35034 4. Longman. 1973.

Murphy. J. ‘Education Act 1870 text and commentary.’ Newton Abbot. David and Charles. 1972.

Musgrave. P. W. ‘The Definition of Technical Education.’ Vocational Aspects of Secondary and FE. Summer edition 1964.

Musgrave. P. W. ‘Constant factors in the demand for technical education 1860-1960’ Brit J Educ Studies 14 pages 173-187 1966. Also in ‘Sociology, History and Education.’ London. Methuen. 1970.
Musgrave. P. W. ‘Society and Education in England since 1800.’ ISBN 416 10790 7/ASIN B0010WB9HA. Methuen and Co. 1968.

Musgrave. P. W. ‘Sociology, History and Education.’ Methuen and Co Ltd. 1970. (Interesting material on technical education).
Musson. A. E. and Robinson.E. ‘ Science and Technology and in the Industrial Revolution.’ SBN 7190 0370 9. Manchester University Press.1969.

Musson. A. E. ‘James Nasmyth and the Early Growth of Mechanical Engineering.’ Economic History Review. 2nd series. 10. 1957.

Musson. A. E. ‘James Watt and the Steam Revolution.’ Adam and Dart. 1969.



NAPTE. ‘Industrial Value of Technical Education: Opinion of Practical Men.’ The Contemporary Review. May 1889.

National Association for the Promotion of Promotion of Secondary and Technology Education (NAPTSE). ‘Technical Education in England and Wales, 1st and 2nd Annual Reports.’ Cooperative Society. London. 1889.

National Association of Teachers in Technical Institutions. ‘Technical Education in Scotland.,’ A. C. West. 1959.

NAPTSE. ‘Guide to Evening Classes in London.’ Cassell and Co. London.1890.

NAPTSE. ‘The Development of Technical and Secondary Education in England.’ Henry Roscoe. 1901.

NATFHE. ‘College Administration.’ Edited by I. Waitt. Natfhe. ISBN 0 901390 305. 1980.

NATFHE. ‘The Education, Training and Employment of Women and Girls.’ Natfhe. 1980.

NATFHE. ‘The Young Worker.’ 1977.

NATHFE. ‘The Education, Training and Employment of the 16-19 Age Group.’ 1977.

NATHFE. ‘Higher Education.’ 1978.

NATHFE. ‘Education for Adults.’ 1979.

NATHFE.’ General Studies.’ 1980.

National Insitute of Adult Education. ‘Liberal Education in a Technical Age.’ Max Parris. NIAE. 1955.

National Institute of Adult Education. ‘The Evening Institute’. H. J. Edwards, NIAE. 1961.

National Union of Teachers. F. Mander. ‘Post-Primary Schools in Relation to Industry.’ NUT 1927.

National Assembly of Wales. ‘The Learning Country’. NAW. 2001.

Naylor. F. ‘Technical Schools: A Tale of Four Countries’. Centre for Policy Studies CPS). 1985.

NCVQ. ‘The Common Accord.’ London. NCVQ. August 1993.

Neale. R. S. ‘Class in English History 1680-1850.’ Basil Blackwell Oxford. ISBN 0-631-13048-9. 1981.

Needham. J. ‘Clerks and Craftsmen in China and the West’. CUP. 521 07235 2. 1970.

Needham. J.’ Science and Civilisation in China. 54-4723′.  CUP. 1971. 25 volumes so far. A truly amazing set of texts.

Neff. W. ‘Victorian Working Women.’ Cass. 1966.

New. C. W. ‘The Life of Henry Brougham to 1830.’ OUP. 1961.

Newell. Abm. ‘A Hillside View of Industrial History.’ ISBN 0-678-00695-4. Augustus M Kelly Publishers. 1971.

Newman. M. ‘The Poor Cousin, a study of Adult Education.’ George Allan and Unwin. 1979.

NFER. M. J. Wray, Moor. C and Hill. S. ‘UVP: An Evaluation of the Pilot Programme.’ NFER. 1980.

Nightingale. E. ‘The Teaching of Science in Britain.’ School Science Review. Association for Science Education (ASE). XLIII 150. 1962.

Norrie. C. M. ‘Bridging the Years, A Short History of British Civil Engineering.’ London. Arnold. 1956.

Nudds. J etal. ‘Science in Ireland 1800-1930 Tradition and Reform’. ISBN 0-9513586 18. Trinity College. 1988.



O’Brien. P. ‘Warrington Academy 1757-86.’ ISBN 0 9514333 0 X. Owl Books. 1989.

O’Brien. P and Quinault. R. (eds). ‘ The Industrial Revolution and British Society.’ ISBN 0 521 43744 X. CUP. 2001.

O’Brian. R. ‘The Rise and Fall of the MSC.’ Policy Studies Vol. 9. Issue 2. 1988.

Orange. A. D. ‘Joseph Priestley.’ Shire Publications. 1974.

OHear. P and White. J. A. ‘ National Curriculum for All’. ISBN 1 87245231 0. IPPR. 1991.

Orange. A. D. Joseph Priestley. Shire Publications. 1974.

Osborn. F. M. ‘The Story of the Mushets.’ London. Nelson. 1952.

Osborne. R. ‘Iron, Steam and Money: The Making of the Industrial Revolution’. Pimlico. 2014.


Page. W. ‘Commerce and Industry. Statistical Tables.’ London. 1919.

Parish. C.  ‘The History of the Lit and Phil. Vol 2.’ ISBN 0 9514922 0 9. Lit and Phil Society of Newcastle upon Tyne.  1990.
Parker. I. ‘Dissenting Academies in England: their rise and progress and their place in the education systems of the country.’ CUP. 1914/2009.

Parker. S. R. ‘Industry and Education.’ George Allen and Unwin. 1975.

Paterson. L. Scottish Education in the 20th Century. ISBN 10:0748615903.Edinburgh University Press.
Pavitt. K. and Worboys. M. ‘Science, Technology and Society.’ ISBN 10:0408712996.  Butterworths. 1975.
Pawson. E. ‘The Early Industrial Revolution- Britain in the Eighteenth Century.’ ISBN 0 7134 1626 2. Batsford Academic. 1978.
Payne. P. L. ‘British Entrepreneurship in the 19th. Century.’ ISBN 333 11646 1. Macmillan. 1974.
Payne. G.L. ‘Britain’s Scientific and Technological Manpower.’ ASIN B0000CKMIX.  Stanford U P. 1960.

Payne. J. ‘Women, Training and the Skills Shortage: A Case for Public Investment.’ Policy Studies Institute (PSI) London. 1991.

Peck. J. ‘Spontaneous Disorder? A Very Short History of British Vocational Education and  Training 1563-1973’. Policy Futures in Education. Vol 2. No 1. 2004.
Pedley. F.H. ‘The Educational System in England and Wales.’  ISBN 10:0855221208/ 64-18203. Pergamon/Macmillan Press. 1964.

Peers. R. ‘British Adult Education.’ ISBN 10-15554233817. RKP. 1966.

Pelling. H. ‘A History of British Trade Unionism’ SBN 333 14301 9 Macmillan/St Martin’s Press. 1963.

Pendred. L. ‘British engineering societies.’ Longmans for the British Council. 1947.

PEP. ‘The Entrance in Industry.’ 16, Queen Anne’s Gate. 1935.
Percy. E. ‘Education at the Crossroads.’ Evans Brothers Ltd. No date.

Percy. E. ‘Report on Education for Industry and Commerce.’ HMSO. 1928.
Perkin. H. ‘The Rise of Professional Society. Since 1880.’ ISBN 0 415 04975 X. Routledge, 1996.
Perkin. H. ‘Orgins of Modern English Society.’ ISBN 0-7448-0026-9. Ark Paperbacks. 1985.

Perkins. F. H. ‘Training in Industry’. Journal of the RSA. August 1951.
Petch. J. A. ‘Fifty Years of Examinations.’ Harrop. 1953.
Peters. A. J. ‘ British Further Education.’ ISBN 10:0 080118933/60-29959. Pergamon Press. 1967.

Peters. A. J. ‘The Changing Ideas of Technical Education.’ British Journal of Educational Studies. Volume 11 No. 2 (May) 1963. pages 97-216.
Peterson. A. D. C. ‘A Hundred Years of Education.’ ISBN 0 7156 0581 X. Gerald Duckworth and Co Ltd. 1971.

Pike. E. R. ‘Human Documents of the Industrial Revolution.’ Allen and Unwin. London. 1966.

Pike. E Royston . ‘Human Documents of the Industrial Revolution’. London. Allen and Unwin. 1966.
Philips. M. ‘The Young Industrial Worker. A Study of his Educational Needs.’ OUP. 1922.

Pile. W. ‘The DES.’ George A;llen and Unwin. 1979.

Pinchbeck. I. ‘Women Workers and the Industrial Revolution 1750 – 1850.’ ISBN 0 86068 170 X. Virago. 1981.

Pier. R.B. ‘The Institute of Chemistry of GB and Ireland’. London. 1914.

Pilcher. R. B. ‘History of Institute of Chemistry 1877-1914.’ London. Institute of Chemistry. 1914.
Pinion. F. B. ‘Educational Values in an Age of Technology.’ ASIN B0017DGRWY. Pergamon/Macmillan Co. 1964.

Pirvis. J. ‘A History of Women Education in England.’ ISBN 13: 978 -0335097753. Open University. 1981.
Playfair. L. ‘Industrial Instruction on the Continent.’  Longman, Brown, Green and Longmans/Royal College of Mines. 1852.

Playfair. L. ‘ Science and its Relation to Labour.’ London. 1853.

Playfair. L.  ‘The Chemical Principles involved in the Manufactures of the Exhibition’. Lectures on the Results of the Great Exhibition. SoA London. 1852.

(Critical of the negative attitude to manufacturing, technical and scientific ideas. Strongly advocated the development of technical universities and institutions).

Podmore. F. ‘Robert Owen, a Biography.’ London. Hutchinson. 1906.

Pole. T. ‘A History of the Origins and Progress of Adult Schools.’ Bristol. 1814.

Pollard. S. ‘Britain’s Prime and Britain’s Decline. (The British Economy 1870-1914).’ ISBN 0-340-53913-5).  Edward Arnold. 1991.

Pollard. S. ‘The Wasting of the British Economy.’ Macmillan. 1985.

Pole. T. ‘A History of the Origin and Progress of Adult School.’ Bristol. 1814.
Pollard. A.F. ‘Factors in Modern History.’ Constable and Co. 1948.

Pollard. A. Purvis. J. and Walford. G. (eds). ‘Education, Training and the New Vocationalism.’ OUP. 1988.

Porter. W. S. ‘Sheffield Lit and Phil Society: A Centenary Retrospect.’ The Society. 1922.

Praagh G Van. ‘Henry E Armstrong and Science Education’. ISBN 0 7195 2893 3. John Murray. 1973.
Prais. S. J. ‘Vocational Qualifications of the Labour Market Force in Britain and Germany.’  NIESR. 1981.

Prais. S. J. ‘Productivity, Education and Training.’ National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR).
Prandy. K. ‘Professional Employees. A Study of Scientists and Engineers’. ISBN 10:0571064000. Faber and Faber Ltd. 1965.

Pratt. J. and Burgess. T. ‘Polytechnics. A Report.’ ISBN 10:0273003250. Pitman. 1974.

Pressnell. C. S. (Ed) ‘Studies on the Industrial Revolution.’ University of London Press. 1960.
Price. B. ‘Technical Colleges and Colleges of FE.’ BT Batsford Ltd. 1959.

Price. R. N. ‘The Working Men’s Club Movement and Victorian Social Reform Ideology.’ Victorian Studies. 15 (2). 1971/72.

Priestley. B. ‘British Qualifications.’ Kegan Paul. 1978.

Pring. R and Hayward. G. Education for All. The Education and Training for 14-19 Year Olda. ISBN 10:0415547210. Routledge. 2009.

Pugh. T. M. ‘Working Girls and Trade School.’ in J. J. Findlay (ed.). ‘The Young Wage Earner and the Problem of his Education.’ London. 1918.

Pugh. D. R. ‘The 1902 Education Act. The Search for a Compromise.’ British Journal of Educational Studies. 16. 2. 1968. pages 164-178.

Purvis. J. ‘A History of Women’s Education in England,’ Open University. 1991.






Raggatt. P and Unwin. L. (eds). ‘Change and Intervention: Vocational Education and Training.’ London. Falmer Press. 1991.

Raistrick. A. ‘Quakers in Science and Industry.’ Bannisdale Press. 1968.

Randall. J. ‘Technical Education.’Conference at Society of Arts. 31. January 1868. (Randall was an author of  the Artizans’ Reports).

Raphael. D. ‘Adam Smith.’ OUP. 1985.

Raphael. S. ‘The Workshop of the World: Steam Power and Hand Technology in Mid-Victorian Britain.’ History Workshop. Number 3. Spring 1977.

Raybould. S. G. ‘The Approach to WEA Teaching.’  WEA. 1949.

Ravetz. J.R. ‘Scientific Knowledge and its Social Problems.’ ISBN 10:1560008514. Clarendon Press Oxford. 1972.
Raybould. S.G. ‘Trends in English Adult Education.’ ASIN B0000CK7T7. Heinemann. 1959.

Raybould. S. G. ‘The English Universities and Adult Education.’ WEA London. 1951.

Reader. W.J. ‘Professional Men: The Rise of the Professional Classes in 19th Century England.’ London.1966.

Reed. T. W. ‘Lyon Playfair.’ London. 1899.

Reeks. M. ‘The Royal School of Mines.’ London. 1920.

Rees. R. M. ‘Mathematics in FE: Difficulties Experienced by Craft and Technician Students’. Brunel FE Monographs. 1973.
Reese Edwards. K. H. R. ‘The Secondary Technical School.’ ASIN B001SKKY1Q. ULP. 1960.

Redford. A. ‘Labour Migration in England.1800-1850 Manchester Press. 1964 edition.

Reid. T. Wemyss. ‘Memoirs and Correspondence of Lyon Playfair.’ Longmans. London. 1898.

Reid. G. L. and Allen. K. Nationalised Industries. Penguin Education. 1973.

Reilly. D. ‘The Muspratts and Gambles- Pioneers of England’s Alkali Industry.’ Journal of Chemical Education. Vol. 28. 1951. pages 650-3.

Research in Post-16 Education. Vol 1. ISBN 1 359-6748. 1996.

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Key to abbreviations:

AoC: Association of Colleges

AEB: Associated Examining Board

ASE: Association for Science Education

APTI: Association of Principals in Technical Institutions

ATI: Association of Technical Institutions

BACIE: British Association of Commercial and Industrial Education

BJES: British Journal of Education Studies

BoE: Board of Education

BYC: British Youth Council

CER:  Comparative Education Review

CPR: Central Policy Review

CPS: Centre for Policy Studies

CUP: Cambridge University Press

EC/EngC: Engineering Council

EIAGA: Engineering Industries Association Group Apprenticeships

EOC: Equal Opportunities Commission

FESC: Further Education Staff College

FEU: Further Education Unit

JBPVE: Joint Board for Pre-Vocational Education

JEW: Journal of Education and Work

JHoI: Journal of History of Ideas

JoE: Journal of Education

JoVET: Journal of Vocational Education and Training

JRSA: Journal of the Royal Society of Arts

JSA: Journal of Society of Arts

LSDA: Learning and Skills Development Agency

LSE: London School of Economics

MSC: Manpower Services Commission

NAPTSE: National Association for the Promotion of Technical and Secondary Education

NATFHE: National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education

NATTI: National Association of Teachers in Technical Institutions

NFER: National Association for Educational Research

NIAE: National Institute of Adult Education

NIESA: National Institute for Economic and Social Research

NUT: National Union of Teachers

OECD: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

OREP: Oxford Review of Economic Policy

OU: Open University

OUP: Oxford University Press

RKP: Routledge Kegan Paul

SoA: Society of Arts

SRHE: Society for Research into Higher Education

ULCI: Union of Lancashire and Cheshire Institutes

ULP: University of London Press

UNESCO: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation

UTP: University Tutorial Press

VAEd: Vocational Adult Education

VAoE: Vocational Aspects of Education

VAoSFE: Vocational Aspects of Secondary and Further Education

WMEU: Working Men’s Educational Union







The Future of Manufacturing

We live in an interesting world at present, full of contradictory and paradoxical policies, whether these be financial or political, where this country still lacks a definitive and clearly articulated long-term strategic framework for post-16 education and training. There is still uncertainty about the future of manufacturing in this country, and how this country can improve its performance and competitiveness within the global economy.

One classic example is the future shape and purpose of manufacturing and construction in this country. Recent statistics show that major transformations are occurring in employment patterns. There are now more qualified social workers in employment than there are builders. Membership of professional associations associ¬ated with law and accountancy has gone up by almost 50%. By sharp contrast, construction has lost a quarter of its workforce and manufacturing has lost almost 800,000 jobs between 1990 and 1995. Service-based industries gained just over 200,000 jobs in that period.

The Government and its various Ministers talk enthusiastically about the need to restore the manufacturing base of the UK, but they then operate policies, for example in the areas of education and training, that weaken that endeavour. The application of a hard free-market-driven approach seriously weakens the ability of educational institutions to offer quality provision and to increase the stock and flow of highly-qualified people into certain areas of strategic importance such as manufacturing, engineering and construction. The education and training of craftpeople and technicians is equally as important as that of graduates and chartered professionals.

Decline of manufacturing

Over the past two decades we have witnessed the wholesale destruction of manufacturing in this country. Many areas of manufacture and production in which we were world leaders a few decades ago have rapidly vanished. Even accepting that many of the companies were over-staffed and operated rigid and inflexible work practices, plagued with demarcation disputes, the rate of destruction is now seen to have been disastrous and has most certainly contributed to our poor economic performance and has seriously weakened our competitive edge within the global economy.

Many have argued that we have reached the critical threshold and it is essential that long-term strategies are now developed to regenerate a manufacturing base, different in kind to that which previously existed, but without it this country cannot hope to compete with our competitors and will further slip down the international league tables.

This country must offer quality and value-added services and products that the rest of the world will want to purchase. Some UK-based companies are world-class and successful, but at present many are not.

Need for a balance

The financial health of any country must surely depend on a sensible balance of manufacturing and service-based industries. They must complement each other and no one element should be given undue emphasis. It has been said that the disappearance of one per cent of the manufacturing base requires a ten per cent replacement by service-based industries. This fact alone highlights the absurdity that this country can survive within a global market, reliant solely on a service-based econ¬omy. That seemed to be the political philosophy of the ’80s and I believe that we are now paying the penalty for that rather shortsighted belief. Even the arguments and drive for greater inward investment are now being questioned by many commentators. After all, retrenchment could occur at any time as a result of changing political or financial priorities back in the home country. Many overseas companies who have invested in the UK often bring their own senior staff and continue to use their own home-based banks and financial services.

A number of politicians argue that it is the global economy that is the ultimate determiner of whether we have employment bases in manufacturing and construction. After all, they would argue, why should we have a domestic construction industry when one can import the expertise at lower cost? It surely does not make sense for this country to be dependent on others to build and maintain the country’s infrastructure, much of which is of strategic importance. One aspect of this argument is sel¬dom heard: after all, if one maintains a strong and viable construction industry, then one is in a position to tender for lucrative overseas contracts. A number of people I have spoken to who support the market economy seem reluctant to accept this rationale. It is as if they have thrown in the towel – or should it be the trowel? – completely, and are happy just to allow a free deregulated market mentality to operate.

Another factor which intrigues me is that, when companies declare their profits or losses and the subsequent dividends to their shareholders, great emphasis is given to the level of these dividends, or to the fact that they have significantly downsized their company and apparently increased their efficiency and productivity, but very little mention is made on the resultant impact of the recession and downsizing of companies on educa¬tion and training and the development of the workforce in their companies.

It always appears that the shareholder occupies the apex of the pyramid and the last thing that is mentioned is the impact on the employees. They can be made redundant or receive little or no re-training or upskilling. One of the key flags of a world¬class company is the fact that it is employee-driven and the company invests heavily in lifelong learning and retraining. This latter aspect is greatly assisted by the development of meaningful and more effective partnerships between employers and educational institutions.

Changing the nature of learning

It is now accepted that colleges and universities need to approach their work in very different ways, offering new provision, delivered in more enlightened ways, and making certain that the provision matches the needs of the employer and the changing nature of work. It is accepted that many engineers, for example, do not possess the necessary knowledge, skills and ‘graces’ that will be needed for the future nature of work, and to make their contribution to develop world-class companies. Lifelong learning is now essential to cope with the ever-accelerating knowledge- and skill-base and all the consequences of the global economy and greater competitiveness. The Government, and the Funding Councils, must accept that the nature of learning is being transformed and there should be a sensible and cor¬rectly differentiated funding to bring about the necessary changes and to encourage partnerships between them and the employers.

Educating and training engineers and construction people is expensive, by the very nature of the skills, knowledge and understanding that they need to acquire. There therefore needs to be a long-term strategic plan developed, properly resourced, that recognizes the elements that contribute to that high cost. Employers, too, must be helped by the Government to encour¬age life-long learning. This does not mean that we have to revert to the old levy system, but there surely must be other ways of offering incentives, possibly through a reformed tax regime, to companies that would allow them to accept greater responsi¬bility to develop a more highly-qualified workforce. There are political sensitivities in this approach, and many politicians are reluctant to introduce statutory legislation. But, as the world of work changes and the influence and importance of small and medium establishments increases, it is these very companies that need financial incentives within a national framework. Recognition should also be given to the reprofiting of the workforce with its increasing emphasis on teams and the importance of increasing the stock and flow of highly-qualified craftpeople and technicians as well as graduates.

Unless action is taken, I fear that manufacturing and construction will fall below that critical threshold, and once it does it will be lost for ever and this will raise serious questions about this country’s place, not only in Europe, but within the world.


The implications of the decline in the UK’s manufacturing base and its replacement by service based industries are discussed. A proper recognition of the changing nature of learning and the importance of increasing the stock and flow of highly-qualified craftpeople and technicians as well as graduates is urged.

First published in the Journal of the Foundation for Science and Technology -‘Technology, Innovation and Society’ in Summer 1996.