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Robert Minshull Minshull SHONE

economist

Robert Minshull SHONE, economist in the field of Economic Growth; Business Investment; Economics of Technical Change. Commander of the British Empire 1949;

Knighted 1955; President, Society of Business Economics, 1963-1968; Honorary Fellow, London School of Economies and Political Science, London, United Kingdom.

Background

SHONE, Robert Minshull was born in 1906 in Birkenhead, England.

Education

Bachelor of Engineering, Master of Engineering Liverpool University, 1927,1929. Master of Arts University Chicago, 1934.

Career

Lector, London School of Economies and Political Science, London, United Kingdom, 1935-1936. Head, Director Economics and Statistics Department, British Iron and Steel Federal, 1936-1939, 1946-1953. General Director, Iron and Steel Control, 1940-1945.

Executive Member, Iron and Steel Board, 1953-1962. Director General, NEDC, 1962-1966. Visiting Professor, City University, London, England, 1967-1983.

Special Professor, Nottingham University, 1971-1973. Director, various public companies, 1968-1982. Retired, since 1983.

Achievements

  • Commander of the British Empire 1949;

    Knighted 1955. President, Society of Business Economics, 1963-1968. Honorary Fellow, London School of Economies and Political Science, London, United Kingdom.

Views

My first job was building up the statistical and economic work at the central organisation in the United Kingdom steel industry. This later led to developing the wartime steel allocation plan and helping at the birth of the Controlled Material Plan in the United States of America From early Chicago and London School of Economies and Political Science, London, United Kingdom days I was concerned with the impact of technical progress on investment and prices. This led, as executive member of the Iron and Steel Board, in 1957 to the supervision of steel prices on a long-term marginal cost basis.

Prices were related to costs at a new plant embodying the latest technology. This enabled the supervision of both price and development policy to be integrated. It also influenced the adoption in 1967 of a similar policy as the key factor in the government’s policy for nationalised industries.

As the first Director-General of the National Economic Development Council (NEDC), I established its organisation and that of the industrial EDCs (1962). This structure has remained essentially unchanged for over 20 years and through six successive governments. Our first task was preparing the plan for Growth of the United Kingdom Economy to 1966 and Conditions

Favourable to Faster Growth on the policy changes needed.

And then we reported on progress a year later. On returning to academic and company life in 1966 my main concern was with the significance of technical change for growth and for price and investment decisions, and with a model for such decision-making. The need to measure the real return and cost of capital for both company and public purposes was emphasised.

These issues were covered in my book Price and Investment Relationships and in other publications.

Membership

Iron and Steel Board 1953-1961.

Interests

  • Other Interests

    Golf.