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BVB - Papers of Vivian Bowden, Lord Bowden of Chesterfield

Papers of Vivian Bowden, Lord Bowden of Chesterfield

Reference Number(s) GB 133 BVB
Held at The University of Manchester, The John Rylands University Library Contact Details
Dates of Creation 1930s-1989
Physical Description 5 li.m.; 293 items
Name of Creator Bowden, Bertram Vivian, Lord Bowden of Chesterfield, 1910-1989, scientist, educationist and educational administrator
Language of Material English
Location This collection is located at theUniversity Archive and Records Centre University of Manchester Library, Burlington St., Manchester.
Cataloguing Info [ hide ]
Title Papers of Vivian Bowden, Lord Bowden of Chesterfield
Author Finding aid compiled by James Peters.
Publication The John Rylands University Library
150 Deansgate,, Manchester, , M3 3EH, , England. , tel.: +44 (0)161 275 3764, fax: +44 (0)161 834 5574,

© The John Rylands University Library, The University of Manchester 2009

Edition 1st edition
Creation Finding aid encoded in EAD 2002 by James Peters using Oxygen XML Editor v.9.3
Descriptive Rules Finding aid compiled according to JRUL's Guide to the listing of archives (3rd edition, 2004), which is based on the General International Standard Archival Description (ISAD(G)), second edition.
Language Usage Finding aid written in English.

Scope and Content

The papers of Lord Bowden comprise his correspondence files and copies of published writings. The collection documents his involvement in higher education, politics and public life from the period of his appointment as Principal of Manchester Municipal College of Technology in 1953 until his death. It includes very little material on his life and work before this period.

Bowden's files (BVB/1) cover various aspects of higher education policy including visits to foreign universities (particularly the U.S.A. and Canada), debates on policy such as the Rothschild Report (BVB/1/95), student unrest (BVB/1/73), the "Brain Drain" (BVB/1/49, 60, 69), the Flowers report on computing in higher education, 1966 (BVB/1/48) and his evidence to the Public Accounts Committee in 1966 on university funding (BVB/1/55). There are files concerning his political interests including detailed documentation of his work for the Labour Party Science Group (BVB/1/26).

There are several files reflecting Bowden's interests in computing, including the publication of Faster than thought (BVB/1/2-6), Charles Babbage (BVB/1/82), plus academic and business applications of computers (BVB/1/34, 81, 83, 93 and 99). Bowden's interests in industrial training (BVB/1/29, 57 and 87), and graduate employment (BVB/1/43, 118-119) are extensively documented.

Bowden took an active interest in British industry and his papers contains files relating to machine tools (BVB/1/14, 66, 125), engineering (BVB/1/21) and tribology (BVB/1/58 and 112). Other files detail his work for public bodies and professional associations including the Electronics Research Council (BVB/1/19), Radio Research Board (BVB/1/27), NEDO working committee on data transmission (BVB/1/71), the Science Masters' Association (BVB/1/20), Association of Scientific Workers (BVB/1/42) and the Association of Colleges of Further and Higher Education (BVB/1/98). Also covered are public issues on which Bowden spoke or wrote: nuclear power (BVB/1/115, 129, 139), the European Economic Community (BVB/1/105, 107), and inflation (BVB/1/97, 116, 120-1, 124-127); the latter containing interesting comments not only on specialised matters of inflation accounting, but also on wider political and economic conditions in Britain in the 1970s. Bowden travelled extensively, and was an informed observer of other countries' higher education systems, particularly the U.S.A. (BVB/1/9, 31, 51, 108) and the Soviet Union (BVB/1/30).

Some information on Bowden's wartime work on radar and the development of Identification Friend or Foe is present, although it is not contemporaneous (BVB/1/113, 140-141). There are files on individuals with whom Bowden was associated: Lord Rutherford (BVB/1/136), Robert Watson-Watt (BVB/1/110) and A.P. Rowe (BVB/1/130).

Bowden's papers contain correspondence with friends and colleagues such as the scientists and academics Willis Jackson, Nevil Mott, Patrick Blackett, Stanley Gill, Robert Hanbury Brown and the businessman Peter Jost, with whom he discussed a range of issues. The Bowden papers are an important resource for a range of issues in post-war British history including: debates on the nature and purpose of the universities, relations between government and academe, government policies and practices on science and technology, the politics of "technocracy", and the performance of the British economy, especially matters of industrial training, fiscal policy and inflation.

Administrative / Biographical History

(Bertram) Vivian Bowden was born in Chesterfield in 1910, the son of Bertram Bowden, a teacher, and Sarah Bowden. He was educated at Chesterfield Grammar School and Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where he took a double first in natural sciences. His postgraduate work was carried out at the Cavendish Laboratory, where he wrote his Ph.D. on the structure of radioactive nuclei. In 1934 Bowden was an ICI fellow at the University of Amsterdam, and following this, worked as a schoolmaster at Liverpool Collegiate School (1935-7), and Oundle School (1937-40). In 1940, he was appointed to the Ministry of Defence Telecommunications Research Establishment, where he undertook work on the development of radar, including a pioneering system for distinguishing between friendly and enemy aircraft. In 1943 he moved to the U.S.A. to work at the Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, where he assisted with the introduction of radar systems to the U.S. Bowden's work on radar identification was later adapted to post-war air traffic control systems.

Post-war Bowden worked briefly at the Atomic Energy Establishment, Harwell, before joining the engineering consultancy, Robert Watson-Watt and Partners (1947-1950), having previously worked with Watson-Watt on radar. In 1950, he joined Ferranti Ltd. as one of the first computer salesmen.

In 1953, Bowden was appointed Principal of the Manchester Municipal College of Technology. Bowden's reputation rests in part on his transformation of this institution into one of the country's leading technological universities. The College was owned by Manchester City Council, but had very close links to the Victoria University of Manchester, housing its Faculty of Technology. It provided a very wide range of vocational and academic education, and Bowden, considering the expansion of advanced technological education to be a national priority, tirelessly worked to improve the College's status. In this, he was to be very successful, as the College evolved into being a university in all but name. In 1956 Manchester Corporation relinquished control, and Manchester College of Science and Technology came into being, a chartered institution eligible for University Grants Committee funding. In 1965, this became the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, better known by its acronym, UMIST. During this period, Bowden oversaw the creation of new departments, and a major increase in staff and student numbers. Some twenty three new buildings were commissioned during his period of office, with the city centre campus being transformed as a result.

Bowden's initiatives at Manchester occurred at a time of growing concern about the UK's poor performance in technology at both academic and industrial levels. Bowden's skilfully exploited this to promote his own wide ranging programme of reforms of higher education, the economy, and government science policy. These were conveyed in a series of speeches and articles from the late 1950s onwards, winning Bowden the reputation as a persuasive exponent of "technocracy". This led to him being appointed to several public bodies: he was chair of the Electronics Research Council of the Ministry of Aviation, 1960-1964, a member of the Radio Research Board 1963-1964, and later chair of the working committee on data transmission of the National Economic Development Office. The Labour Party leader, Harold Wilson, attracted by "technocratic" reforms of the British economy, nominated Bowden to a life peerage in 1963. Bowden, in turn, was impressed with Labour's new-found interest in science and technology, and became involved with the Party's Science Group, chaired by Richard Crossman. When Wilson won the 1964 general election, he appointed Bowden minister of state for education and science, with responsibility for government civil science and higher education. Bowden's time in public office was not however considered a success and in 1965, he left the government and returned to UMIST, retiring as Principal in 1976.

Bowden continued to maintain a high public profile after his period in government; he gave numerous lectures and addresses at British and foreign universities, and to industry and professional bodies. He was a frequent speaker in the House of Lords, a prolific contributor to the press, and appeared on numerous TV and radio programmes. In the 1960s, the atmosphere seemed propitious to the policies Bowden was advocating: increased government expenditure on higher education; a bias in such expenditure to science and technology; an emphasis on applied technology, with close links between academe and industry; increased professionalism and expertise in the administration of scientific public policy; a strategic, co-operative approach to such matters as industrial and management training; and improved status for technically skilled experts within British industry.

In the event, Bowden was to be disappointed by the actual outcome of events, and by the 1970s he became pessimistic about the country's prospects. He was particularly concerned about the poor employment opportunities for science and technology graduates, and was critical of the USA's alleged role in causing a "brain drain" of talent, to sustain what he saw as undesirable expenditure on its military and space programmes. (Bowden also blamed the UK for encouraging a brain drain of its own of scientists and medics from the developing countries). Bowden was also concerned about the vulnerability of British industry to inflation, believing that government fiscal policies were hindering reinvestment of profits. He developed an interest in inflation accounting, suggesting mechanisms of inflation indexation by which firms could protect themselves against the worst effects of rising prices. He pointed, rather optimistically, to Brazil's apparent success in implementing such a system to combat hyper-inflation.

Outside of politics and economics, Bowden was interested in the history of computing, having authored the standard work on the subject, Faster than thought in 1953, and also in the history of radar. He received a number of awards, including honorary degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (USA), Manchester, and Kumasi University, Ghana, an institution with which he had long associations. He was also presented with a Pioneer Award from the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (USA) in 1973 for his wartime work on radar.

Bowden was married four times,and had a son and two daughters. He died at a nursing home in Bowdon, Cheshire on 31 July 1989.

Arrangement

Arranged into three main series:

  • BVB/1 - Subject and policy files;
  • BVB/2 - Published and unpublished writings;
  • BVB/3 - Miscellaneous items.

These items are arranged predominantly in chronological order.

Bowden's method of organizing his records did not draw a hard-and-fast line between his official papers as Principal of UMIST and those concerning his other activities, both semi-official and private. A single filing system appears to have been used, even though files on his external activities were not official UMIST records. It was decided, as far as it was feasible, to separate his personal papers from the UMIST Principal's files. There were certain difficulties in achieving this, as there was overlap between the subjects in the two sets of files. In general, this separation has been accomplished without compromising the provenance of the material. In cases where identifying provenance has been problematic, the material has been retained as part of the Principal's archive. This includes, for example, copies of all Bowden's outgoing correspondence between 1953-1976, which includes both official and private material. Researchers are advised to consult both sets of papers to get a comprehensive and consistent overview of Bowden's official and other activities.

Conditions Governing Access

Most of the collection is open to any accredited reader, although some individual items have been closed for Data Protection reasons. Bowden's correspondence with members of his family is closed to public inspection.

The open part of the collection does contain personal data about living individuals, and readers are expected to comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 in their use of the material.

This finding aid also contains personal data about living individuals. Under Section 33 of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA), The John Rylands University Library (JRUL) holds the right to process such personal data for research purposes. The Data Protection (Processing of Sensitive Personal Data) Order 2000 enables the JRUL to process sensitive personal data for research purposes. In accordance with the DPA, the JRUL has made every attempt to ensure that all personal and sensitive personal data has been processed fairly, lawfully and accurately.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies and photographic copies of material in the archive can be supplied for private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

A number of items within the archive remain within copyright under the terms of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988; it is the responsibility of users to obtain the copyright holder's permission for reproduction of copyright material for purposes other than research or private study.

Prior written permission must be obtained from the Library for publication or reproduction of any material within the archive. Please contact the Keeper of Manuscripts and Archives, John Rylands University Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH.

Appraisal Information

Some duplicate and ephemeral material has been removed.

Acquisition Information

Transferred to the University Archives from various locations in former UMIST buildings in 2004-5. The papers are believed to have been deposited by Lord Bowden in the 1980s.

Custodial History

Lord Bowden's papers appear to have been filed with his official papers as Principal of the College of Technology/UMIST. This was probably done for reasons of administrative convenience. Papers which were clearly personal in nature or relating to his non-official professional and public interests were extracted, and constitute this collection.

Accruals

No further accruals expected.

Related Material

See the official files of the UMIST Principal (uncatalogued) for further information on Bowden's activities as Principal between 1953-1976.

Willis Jackson's papers, held at Imperial College Archives and Corporate Records Unit, contain correspondence with Bowden. Stanley Gill's papers held at the Science Museum also include correspondence with Bowden.


Bibliography

Many of Bowden's views on technological education and its relationship to industry are encapsulated in his Proposals for the development of the Manchester College of Science and Technology (Manchester 1956). See also the published and unpublished writings in BVB/2.

Preferred Citation

Papers of Lord Bowden, BVB/2/3 (etc.), John Rylands University Library, University of Manchester.

Access Points

Subjects
Technology social aspects Great Britain
Technology study and teaching Great Britain
Technology and state Great Britain
Technical Education Great Britain
Engineering education Great Britain
Accounting effect of inflation on
Inflation (Finance) public opinion Great Britain
Inflation (Finance) social aspects Great Britain
Radar history Great Britain
Computers history
Personal Names
Bowden Bertram Vivian 1910-1989 Baron Bowden of Chesterfield, scientist, educationist and educational administrator
Corporate Names
University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (formerly Manchester College of Science and Technology)
Labour Party (Great Britain)

Constituent Records


Subject and Correspondence Files ( 1930s-1989)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1
Physical Description 151 items

Scope and Content

Lord Bowden's files relating to his involvement in public life and his professional, intellectual and research interests.

Arrangement

Primarily arranged chronologically, although files relating to the same subject matter are arranged sequentially.


Mathematical notes ([1930s?] )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/1
Physical Description 2 folders some leaves are torn, grubby.

Scope and Content

Miscellaneous mathematical notes and calculations, presumably made by Bowden, and probably compiled in the 1930s. The data appears to have been related to B.Sc. exam questions of an unidentified university.


File: "Faster than thought" (1953 -1959)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/2
Physical Description 4 folders some photostat copies in this file are discoloured and consequently illegible.

Scope and Content

Papers relating to the writing, publication and reception of Bowden's book, Faster than thought , published by Isaac Pitman's and Sons Ltd. in 1953. The book was an innovative history of computing, to which Bowden contributed several chapters and assumed the role of chief editor. The file includes pre-publication and post-publication manuscript amendments to printed copies of sections of the book, particularly chapter 9 on the Harwell digital computer and chapter 10 on the Telecommunications Research Establishment's computer, undertaken by Bowden and others for a planned revised edition c.1956-7. There is correspondence with technical editors at Pitman's concerning publication, revisions and sales. The file also includes reviews and private comments on the book, including a list of corrections provided by John Leech (Ferranti Ltd.). Other correspondents include A. C. Aitken (University of Edinburgh), H. G. Palmer (Oundle School), E. Welbourne (Emmanuel College, Cambridge), Cyril Burt and Lady Wentworth (re. Babbage).


File: "Faster than Thought" (1955-1957 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/3
Physical Description 4 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to the reprinting of "Faster than Thought". Includes correspondence between Bowden and Isaac Pitman and Sons (publishers) concerning the revisions for the reprint and Bowden's proposals for a new edition. Includes correspondence with authors of revised chapters of the book, including D. G. Prinz, Audrey Wallace, and Durward Cruickshank.


File: "Faster than Thought" ( 1956-1966)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/4
Physical Description 2 folders

Scope and Content

Papers dealing with post-publication aspects of Faster than thought; including updates and a possible revised edition, royalty payments, as well as specific topics (including the chapters on Charles Babbage).


File: "Faster than Thought" ( 1964-1965)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/5
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Correspondence and papers relating to a planned new edition of Faster than thought, first published in 1953. The revised edition was to have been published by Pitman's and supported by I.B.M. Ltd. In the event, this revised edition does not appear to have been produced.

The file includes details of Bowden's planned revisions, which focussed on innovative contemporary uses of computing for academic research, and includes correspondence between Bowden and individuals who were doing this, such as Rev. A. Q. Morton (Biblical textual analysis), Edwin Morgan, University of Glasgow, (literary criticism) and Richard Stone, University of Cambridge, (econometrics). There is also correspondence with K.D. Tocher (United Steel Companies) on the use of computers in the steel industry.


File: Faster than thought ( 1967-1975)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/6
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Correspondence and papers relating to Faster than thought, mostly relating to royalty payments, discussions of possible reprint with amendments (1974), comments by readers on the paperback edition in 1971, and a letter from Herbert Best,14 Aug 1967, discussing Charles Babbage.


File: Notes on technological education ( 1953-1954)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/7
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Miscellany of correspondence, notes, offprints, cuttings concerning issues of technological and management education in the UK, collected by Bowden. Some of the material may have been used in his speech to the Science Masters' Association in 1954 [see also BVB/2/1]. The file includes an inventory of contents; there is correspondence with Vanevar Bush of Carnegie Institute on engineering as a profession, 24 Sep 1953; data from Ferranti Ltd. on staff salaries; a note on engineering education in USA by A. J. Chisholm; and published papers by Lord Halsbury, Ewart Smith, and Harold Hartley.


File: Ferranti Consultancy Agreements (1953-1963 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/8
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Copies of agreements between Bowden and Ferranti Ltd, employing Bowden as a consultant in radio engineering, electronic and computing matters. Includes correspondence from 1963 concerning revision of the agreement, whereby Bowden was retained by International Computer and Tabulators Ltd. Bowden had worked for Ferranti before becoming Principal of the College of Technology in 1953.


File: U.S.A./Canada trip, 1958 ( 1957-1958)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/9
Physical Description 3 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to a visit by Bowden to the USA and Canada in August/September 1958 to assess the facilities of universities. Bowden was accompanied by his daughter, and by Maurice Pariser, chairman of the Manchester College of Science and Technology Council, and his wife. Part of the tour was sponsored by Reed Ltd., for whom Bowden was investigating paper-making technologies in the USA. Bowden visited the University of Toronto, Victoria University, McGill University, University of Montreal, Carleton University in Canada and Western Reserve University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Pennsylvania and M.I.T. in the U.S. He also attended the Congress of Universities of British Commonwealth during this trip. Most of the material is routine correspondence concerning travel arrangements, introductions and itineraries. The file includes a copy of Bowden's report on his visits (September 1958) [folder 3].


File: Gyroscopes ( 1957-1962)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/10
Physical Description 4 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's invention of a "low wander" gyroscope, includes technical specifications and patents, correspondence with Bowden's patent agent (Pollak, Mercer, Trench), Ferranti Ltd., National Research and Development Corporation (which assisted inventors) and E. B. Dane, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology Instrumentation Laboratory), concerning technical details of the gyroscopes.


File: J B Dancer and microphotography ( 1959-1960)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/11
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Papers relating to a meeting in Manchester on 21 March 1960, at which Bowden presided, to celebrate J. B. Dancer (1812-1887), a Manchester photographer, considered to be the inventor of microphotography. The National Microfilm Association (USA) presented its Medal of Merit to Miss E C Wilkie, Dancer's great - granddaughter at this meeting. The file includes notes on Dancer's work, presumably used by Bowden in his address.


File: Biographical notes ( n.d. [1950s-1960s?])

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/12
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Two biographical notes of Bowden, probably compiled for conference and journalistic purposes. They cover Bowden's career to the mid-1960s.


File: Papers on science and technology policy (1960-1964 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/13
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Miscellaneous papers on aspects of science and technology policy, collected by Bowden for research purposes. The file includes: a letter from Julius Stratton (President MIT) enclosing his paper "Liberal education and the usefulness of knowledge"; a report of a visit to Kharkov University, U.S.S.R. by Bowden's Manchester colleagues, John Costello, Brian Flowers, W. B. Hall and Frank Morton in 1962; a letter from H C Wilshire (University of Nottingham), 26 Feb 1964, concerning a TV lecture on economics; and a bundle of papers described as "Lahore papers", relating to a planned conference at Lahore in 1961 organized by the Committee on Science and Freedom, which was sponsored by the Congress for Cultural Freedom. Bowden was scheduled to deliver a paper there, but in the event the conference was not held; there is correspondence between Bowden and Edward Shils and Priscilla Polanyi, who were organizing the conference.


File: Institution of Mechanical Engineers Conference on Machine Tools (1960-1961 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/14
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's speech at the IME Conference on "The need for education in the machine tool trade", 30 June 1960. The files includes several briefing notes on the machine tool industry, mostly supplied by Franz Koenigsberger, a Manchester colleague of Bowden and expert on machine tools. There is a draft version of the speech (amended), and a summary of the conference proceedings. The file includes notes of a post-conference conversation between Bowden and Professor H. Opitz on machine tools, 26 Sep 1961. The UK machine tool industry and its relations with university research was a long-standing interest of Bowden's.

Related Material

See also BVB/1/66 and 125.



File: Private work on electronics and computers ( 1960-1963)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/15
Physical Description 2 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's interests in areas of electronic and computers. Most of the material relates to discussions of solid state physics in U.K. by the Electronics Research Council (of which Bowden was chair, and which reported to the Ministry of Aviation) in response to A H Cottrell's paper on "Technological progress on materials in the United Kingdom" (1960) [Cottrell b.1919 was professor of metallurgy, University of Cambridge, and later Government chief scientific adviser ]. There are miscellaneous papers relating to computing in the UK, including a number of briefing notes and reports by Computer Consultants Ltd.

Related Material

See BVB/1/19 for Bowden's chairmanship of the Electronics Research Council.



File: A H Candlin (1960-1961 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/16
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Correspondence between Bowden and A. H. Candlin (Northampton College of Advanced Technology, London [now City University]) concerning the history of Chinese science.


File: British Association meeting, Norwich ( 1961-1962)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/17
Physical Description 2 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to a speech delivered by Bowden to a British Association meeting at Norwich in 1961, concerning the development of computerisation in industry and government. Mainly correspondence and papers provided to Bowden on the subject matter and presumably used for his speech. Includes some later correspondence from 1962 which relates to linear programming applications in agriculture, and in a Manchester traffic survey.

Related Material

See also BVB/2/38.



File: British Association meeting, Manchester ( 1960-1962)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/18
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Papers relating to the British Association for the Advancement of Science meeting at Manchester in August/September 1962. Correspondence relates to the preparation of a survey of North West England members' interests, which was issued at the conference, and papers of the Local General Committee, of which Bowden was a member, and which oversaw the conference's planning.


File: Electronics Research Council (1961-1964 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/19
Physical Description 2 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's membership of the Electronics Research Council, a public body which reported to the Ministry of Aviation. Bowden was chair of the Committee until his appointment to government in October 1964. The file deals with the Committee's work in areas such as digital computers, radar detection, and solid state physics, and includes correspondence between Bowden and Ministry officials and Committee members such as Nevil Mott, R. V. Jones, Robert Cockburn, A. L. Cullen, and Charles Oatley.

Related Material

See also BVB/1/15.



File: Science Masters' Association ( 1962-1963)

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/20
Physical Description 3 folders

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's presidency of the Science Masters' Association. Bowden had worked as a science teacher in the 1930s, and he was very keen to promote the status of science teachers. In 1962/3 he served president of the Association, and delivered a presidential address at its AGM at MCST in January 1963. At this meeting, the Association merged with the Association of Women Science Teachers to form the Association for Science Education. The papers relate to official business during Bowden's presidency, including arrangements for the annual general meeting and the merger with the AWST. A copy of Bowden's speech is included.


File: Institution of Mechanical Engineers Conference (1963 )

Reference GB 133 BVB/1/21
Physical Description 1 folder

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Bowden's address on "The teaching of mechanical engineering design in academic and industrial environments" at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers' conference, "The practice of and education for engineering design", London, 16-17 October 1963. The file includes correspondence relating to the event, draft copies of Bowden's speech, and briefing notes supplied by MCST staff (Professors Koenigsberger, Morton, Harper, Begg and Johnson). There is also correspondence between Bowden and Sir Keith Murray of the University Grants Committee, concerning the Fielden report on Engineering Design, published in the summer of 1963 under the auspices of the Department for Scientific and Industrial Research, which formed the backdrop to the conference.