Arch GA 47
Learned, Edmund Philip. Edmund Philip Learned Papers, 1927-1985: A Finding Aid
Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University
Harvard Business School, Boston MA 02163.
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Call No.: Arch GA 47
Repository: Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University
Title: Edmund P. Learned papers
Quantity: 4.5 linear feet (9 boxes)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: Writings, speeches, correspondence and consulting records of Harvard Business School
Professor Edmund P. Learned.
Processed: November 2006
By: Dominique Tremblay
Materials for the collection were brought together from a number of locations. The
documents were organized into series, and refoldered and reboxed after removal of
binders and paper clips. Obsolete catalog cards were removed from the catalog. Many
pages of Learned's historical notes contained original documents taped into place
either as part of the narrative or as corroborative or illustrative accompaniment.
A substantial amount of conservation photocopying was done on this portion of the
collection. Photocopies on acid-neutral paper were incorporated into the collection
and placed with originals
Collection is open for research. Materials stored offsite; access requires advance
HBS Archives collections require a secondary registration form, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
for more information.
Cite as: Edmund P. Learned papers. HBS Archives, Baker Library, Harvard Business School.
Interested researchers should also refer to the following additional collections in
the Harvard Business School Archives: Army Air Forces Statistical School Records (Arch
EA80.4); and Learned's doctoral dissertation (T2 SLMB L438).
Edmund Philip Learned (b. 1900) received the A.B. and A.M. in Economics from the University
of Kansas in 1922 and 1925 respectively, and the MBA and Doctor of Commercial Science
degrees from Harvard Business School in 1927 and 1930. He taught economics and retailing at the University of Kansas from
1922-1925 and at Simmons College from 1928-1933. He was Professor of Marketing at
HBS (1927-1945), Professor of Business Administration (1945-1960), and Professor of
Business Policy (1960-1967). Learned also taught at the Management Development Institute
(IMEDE) at Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1961-1962, and was a consultant to the Army Air
Forces and U.S. Air Force from 1942-1952, helping to establish the Army Air Forces Statistical School during World War II at HBS. He also served as a consultant to many private firms in the 1940s and 1950s.
Learned's major fields of interest were: Business strategy and policy; planning; and management organization, motivation, and control. He took historical
interest in a number of areas, and compiled notes and memoirs on changes in HBS education,
as well as on his role as a consultant for the national defense.
The collection is arranged in the following series:
- Series I. Consulting Records, 1946-1977
- Series II. General, 1928-1975
- Series III. Speeches and Writings, 1927-1970
- ___Subseries A. Speeches, 1949-1964
- ___Subseries B. Writings, General, 1927-1970
- ___Subseries C. Writings, Historical Notes and Memoirs, 1932-1985
Edmund P. Learned's insights into the nature of business operations and his attitudes
about efficiency are revealed by his consulting files in the collection (primarily
late 1940s and early 1950s), in which he interviewed executives and others at the
firms for whom he consulted, and analyzed problems in corporate structure and operations
(Series I). His notes on the Commodore Company (Series III) summarize systematically
the firm's executive and supervisory relations.
Learned's speeches and writings explore his opinions on executive skills and efficient
management, as well as national policies and their projected effects on business.
Of special interest are Learned's extensive compilations of historical notes prepared
for the Harvard Business School Archives at the request of Dean George Lombard, documenting
aspects of Harvard Business School's educational practices and programs between 1927
and 1967. Materials include Learned's retrospective looks at the Army Air Forces Statistical
School, the course in Business Policy, and the course in Administrative Practices.
Also of interest are Learned's unpublished memoirs of his career and personal relationships
at Harvard Business School, "Forty Years Under Four Deans," and his account of duties
performed for the military, "Headquarters Air Staff and Special Consulting Duties
of Dr. Edmund P. Learned, 1942-1946." Additional historical notes focus on Dean Donham,
management control, and marketing (Series III).
The collection includes one folder of course notes used by Learned in teaching General
Management. There is very little correspondence in the collection, aside from several
folders pertaining to the 1967 Leatherbee lectures.
The bulk of the material in the collection dates from 1945 to 1977, although some
items were created as early as 1927, and Learned's Air Force memoirs were written
- Series: I. Consulting Records, 1946-1977
Scope and Contents: These records represent consulting positions that Learned held during his tenure at
Harvard Business School. The bulk of the materials in this series were produced by
Learned and represent his thoughts on business operations, efficiency and other issues pertaining to his work as a consultant. Materials include correspondence,
notes, reports, articles, memorandums, newsletters, company reports and research and
- Box 1, Folder 1Consulting, General, 1977
- Box 1, Folder 2Bankers Trust, 1956
- Box 1, Folder 3-6Cluett Peabody, 1949-1950
- Box 1, Folder 7Ethyl Corporation, 1949
- Box 1, Folder 8General Electric, 1951
- Box 1, Folder 9General Motors, 1950
- Box 1, Folder 10Heller, Robert Associates, 1949
- Box 1, Folder 11Hughes Aircraft (Draft A), undated
- Box 1, Folder 12Hughes Aircraft (Draft B), undated
- Box 1, Folder 13Hughes Aircraft, Correspondence, 1949-1953
- Box 1, Folder 14-15Hughes Aircraft, 1949
- Box 1, Folder 16Hughes Aircraft, 1950-1953
- Box 2, Folder 1Hughes Aircraft, 1950-1953
- Box 2, Folder 2-4Jewel Tea, 1945-1949
- Box 2, Folder 5Johnson (S.C.) Co., 1949
- Box 2, Folder 6-9Martin (G.L.) Co., undated
- Box 2, Folder 10War Assets Administration, 1946
- Series: III. Speeches and Writings, 1927-1985
Scope and Contents: This series is comprised of Edmund P. Learned's speeches and writings as a professor
at Harvard Business School. Included in this series are Learned's memoirs of his time
Harvard Business School ("Forty Years Under Four Deans"), his work with the Army Air
Force Statistical School during World War II, various writings for his courses in
Marketing, Management and Business Policy. It should be noted that photographs were
removed from Learned's memoirs on the Army Air Force Statistical School and placed
at the end of the collection.
- Subseries A. Speeches, 1949-1964
- Box 3, Folder 3Administration in a Democracy, 1951
- Box 3, Folder 4Building an Organization from the Bottom Up, undated
- Box 3, Folder 5The Development of Executive Skills, 1951
- Box 3, Folder 6Integration, Divorcement and Business Statesmanship 1957
- Box 3, Folder 7Integration in American Industry, 1949
- Box 3, Folder 8New Role for Managers in the 1960's, undated
- Box 3, Folder 9Remarks at NASPA Seminar
- Box 3, Folder 10Strategy for Dealing with Overseas Competition, 1964
- Subseries B. Writings, General, 1927-1970
- Box 3, Folder 11Bibliography of Edmund P. Learned, 1929-1966
- Box 3, Folder 12-14The Bedaux or Point System of Manufacturing Control, 1927
- Box 3, Folder 15Business Policy and General Management at IMEDE, 1962
- Box 3, Folder 16-20Commodore Company, Notes, 1970
- Box 4, Folder 1 Executive Action (reviews), 1950-1952
- Box 4, Folder 2Gasoline Taxes: Theory, Practice, Hazards, 1930
- Box 4, Folder 3How Council of Experts Would Works, 1958
- Box 4, Folder 4Mergers in Cotton Industry, 1930
- Box 4, Folder 5The New Executive, 1948
- Box 4, Folder 6Our Economic Capacity to Meet Mobilization Needs, 1951
- Box 4, Folder 7Personal Values and Business Decisions, 1949
- Box 4, Folder 8Pricing of Gasoline: a Case Study, 1948
- Box 4, Folder 9Problems of a New Executive, 1949
- Box 4, Folder 10Quantity of Buying from the Sellers's Point of View, 1929
- Box 4, Folder 11Relation of Business Policy to Human Relations and Business Practices Courses, 1957
- Box 4, Folder 12The Robinson-Patman Law: Some Assumptions and Expectations, 1937
- Box 4, Folder 13-14The Role of General Management, 1967
- Box 4, Folder 15The Role of the General Manager, 1965
- Box 4, Folder 16Station of Future to Have Large Capacity, 1958
- Box 4, Folder 17The Truth About Gasoline Prices, circa 1954
- Subseries C. Writings, Historical Notes and Memoirs, 1932-1985
- Box 4, Folder 18-23Administrative Practices, 1945-1953
- Box 4, Folder 24Advanced Management Program
- Box 5, Folder 1-4Army Air Force Statistical School, 1941-1944 [Documents 1-25]
(See Box 9 for Photographs)
- Box 5, Folder 5-11Army Air Force Statistical School, Notes On, 1977
- Box 5, Folder 12-13Business Policy, 1953-1964
- Box 6, Folder 1-2Business Policy, 1953-1964 [p.142-207]
- Box 6, Folder 3-12Business Policy, 1953-1964 [Documents1-96]
- Box 6, Folder 13First Year Business Statistics, Historical Notes, undated
- Box 6, Folder 14-17"Forty Years Under Four Deans," 1932-1944
- Box 7, Folder 1-9"Forty Years Under Four Deans," 1949-1968 [Document 1-62]
- Box 7, Folder 10-14"Headquarters Air Staff and Special Consulting Duties of Dr. Edmund P. Learned, 1946-1966,"
- Box 7, Folder 15"Headquarters Air Staff and Special Consulting Duties of Dr. Edmund P. Learned," 1946-1966,"
Appendices, circa 1985
- Box 8, Folder 1-2"Headquarters Air Staff and Special Consulting Duties of Dr. Edmund P. Learned, 1946-1966,"
Appendices, circa 1985
- Box 8, Folder 3"Headquarters Air Staff and Special Consulting Duties of Dr. Edmund P. Learned, 1946-1966,"
Corrections, circa 1985
- Box 8, Folder 4Historical Materials Regarding Dean Donham, circa 1977
- Box 8, Folder 5Management Control, 1942-1945
- Box 8, Folder 6-7Marketing Course, 1934-1936
- Box 9, Folder 1Photographs
(Removed from Army Air Force Statistical School (box 5, folder 3, document 16)
Donham, Wallace Brett, 1877-1954.
Bankers Trust Company (New York, N.Y.)
General Electric Company.
Harvard University. Graduate School of Business Administration--Faculty.
United States. War Assets Administration.
United States. Army Air Forces. Statistical School (Harvard University).