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Historical and International Comparison of Business Interest Associations

19th-20th Centuries


Edited By Danièle Fraboulet-Rousselier, Andrea Maria Locatelli and Paolo Tedeschi

This book brings together selected essays on European Business Interest Associations (BIAs) as important components of European social and economic development over the last 150 years. The studies were originally presented at the 2012 World Economic History Congress, organized in association with an international research programme on BIAs in Europe. They adopt a historical research methodology with the aim of updating previous scholarship from within the social sciences; they also look at a number of different European countries, allowing for a comparative approach. They explore the roots and identity of BIAs, analyse their activities and examine their financing sources and strategies. Some essays discuss the decline of the old system of craft guilds and the emergence of new forms of economic organization and representation: new BIAs had to contend with the development of the trade unions and the growth of state economic interventionism and so they progressively increased their activities in order to serve European companies. Other essays present specific national examples of the evolution of BIAs throughout the twentieth century and also look at the development of Eurofederations.


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Notes on the Genesis and Development of Business Interest Associations in Milan (19th-20th Centuries) (Andrea M. Locatelli & Paolo Tedeschi)


75 Notes on the Genesis and Development of Business Interest Associations in Milan (19th-20th Centuries) Andrea M. LOCATELLI * & Paolo TEDESCHI ** * Catholic University of Milan ** University of Milan-Bicocca Dems Introduction The aim of this article is to consider some aspects of the origin and development of the Business Interest Associations (hereafter BIAs) which had their headquarters in Milan from the 1860s to 1950s1. Based on documents held in the archives of the most important BIAs in Lombardy and nationally, as well as in major Italian libraries2, it demonstrates the unique nature of Milanese BIAs (vertical, horizontal, local, provincial, regional, national), and how they operated3: it also illustrates that they 1 While this article is the result of common research, analysis and reflection by its authors, Andrea M. Locatelli drew up paragraphs 1 and 2 and table 1, while Paolo Tedeschi wrote the remaining text. This article is related to the research project “The Business Associations in Lombardy: Aims, Organisation, Strategies (19th-20th Centuries)” involving researchers from the Catholic University of Milan and the University of Milan-Bicocca DEMS. 2 See the Archives of the Assolombarda (in particular bb. 1652, 1656, 1660, 1663) and of the Confindustria (in particular bb. 1.5/3-1.5/30, 47.1.1-47.1.7 and Fondo Statuti e Documenti). See also statutes and documents concerning BIAs at the Biblioteca Braidense (Milan) and at Sezione Pubblicazioni minori of the Biblioteca Nazionale (Florence) and the newspaper “L’Industria Lombarda” (published since 1922). Finally, see Bibliografia dei periodici economici lombardi, 1815-1914, Milan, Angeli, 2005 (; Ferrari, D. (ed.), Quasi...

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