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Conference of the European Business History Association 2007

13 - 15 September 2007

The 11th Annual Conference of the European Business History Association will be held at the University of Geneva, 13 - 15 September 2007. The theme of the conference is: International Business, International Organizations, and the Wealth of Nations. Call for Papers The department of economic history of the University of Geneva invites you to submit proposals for papers or panels exploring the relationship between international business, international organizations and the wealth of nations in a historical perspective. The choice of Geneva, the home of several international organizations, as the venue for the 2007 conference offers the opportunity to pay closer attention to the history of what might be called the international institutions of business activity. International organizations have shaped international business activities ever since merchants have traded outside their home country -one thinks, for example, of the medieval trade fairs, with those held in Geneva in the 15th century being among the most attended of their day. Throughout the 19th century, international cooperation and competition made ample use of international trade fairs, international exhibitions, international conferences, international cartels, as well as more permanent type of associations, such as the International Telegraph Union, set up in 1865, or the Universal Postal Union, established in 1874 in Bern. The First and even more the Second World War led to increased state intervention and its international corollary, the rise of government agencies which, directly or indirectly, affected the course of international business -from the Economic and Financial Organization of the League of Nations to the WTO (World Trade Organization) and the other multiple Programmes, Commissions, Organizations and Specialized Agencies of the United Nations (ILO, FAO, WHO, ITU, World Bank), as well as regional interstate agreements (ECSC, EEC and then EU in Europe, Nafta in North America, Mercosur in Latin America); to which must be added non government international movements such as ISO (International Organization for Standardization), or the World Economic Forum in Davos, but also its antithesis, the World Social Forum, or even ATTAC, not to mention a myriad of both pro and anti business NGOs, which haven't left the business world indifferent. While welcoming papers on all aspects of international business (exports and imports, foreign direct investment, foreign correspondents and so on) in all sectors (natural resources, manufacturing industry, trade, shipping, banking and finance, and other services), this conference would like to encourage participants to look more closely at the links between international business activities, their mediation through international organizations, and the wealth of nations. Suggested Issues: The following issues can serve as a guideline in this reflection: * Globalization and de-globalization - International organizations and the opening up of the world to business. - International organizations, business enterprises and economic nationalism. - War and peace, international business and international organizations. - Foreign aid, firms and economic development. * Rules, norms and conventions - Rules, norms and the conduct of international business. - Public and private international organizations. - Norms, conventions and innovation. - Legal and illegal practices. * Opportunities and constraints - International arrangements and business strategy. - Markets, institutions and entrepreneurship. - Competition and cooperation worldwide. - Perceptions and attitudes. * National, regional and international interactions. - Nations, firms and international organizations. - The role of supra-regional organizations. - International business and international migrations. - International events (fairs, exhibitions, conferences, sport, etc.). Although priority will be given to papers embracing this theme and closely related topics it is normal practice for EBHA conferences to include some papers outside the theme of the conference. Submission of Abstracts: Those interested in presenting a paper should prepare a one-page abstract. Proposals for panels should contain the abstracts of the individual papers as well as a short summary explaining the rationale of putting these together in one panel. Suggestions for chairs and discussants of the panel will also be welcomed. Please e-mail your abstracts or panel proposals till January 15, 2007 to Gilles Forster or Ileana Racianu, email ebha2007@histec.unige.ch . All proposals will be evaluated by an academic committee. Decisions will be announced by e-mail before February 28th 2007.

Last updated 18 September 2006