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Naval Leadership and Management, 1650-1950

Naval Leadership and Management, 1650-1950

Helen Doe
Richard Harding
Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 222
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  • Book Info
    Naval Leadership and Management, 1650-1950
    Book Description:

    Many works on naval history ascribe success to the special qualities of individual leaders, Nelson being the prime example. This book in contrast moves away from focusing on Nelson and other leading individuals to explore more fully how naval leadership worked in the context of a large, complex, globally-capable institution. It puts forward important original scholarship around four main themes: the place of the hero in naval leadership; organisational friction in matters of command; the role of management capability in the exercise of naval power; and the evolution of management and technical training in the Royal Navy. Besides providing much new, interesting material for naval and maritime historians, the book also offers important insights for management and leadership specialists more generally. HELEN DOE is a Fellow of the Centre for Maritime Historical Studies, University of Exeter and author of Enterprising Women and Shipping (Boydell, 2009). RICHARD HARDING is Professor of Organisational History at the University of Westminster, Chairman of the Society for Nautical Research and author of The Emergence of Britain's Global Naval Supremacy (Boydell, 2010), Amphibious Warfare in the Eighteenth Century (Royal Historical Society, 1991) and six other books. Contributors: GARETH COLE, MIKE FARQUHARSON-ROBERTS, MARY JONES, ROGER KNIGHT, ROGER MORRISS, ELINOR ROMANS, DAVID J. STARKEY, PETER WARD, OLIVER WALTON, BRITT ZERBE.

    eISBN: 978-1-84615-927-5
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. List of Editors and Contributors
    (pp. ix-xii)
  5. Acknowledgements
    (pp. xiii-xiii)
  6. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. xiv-xiv)
  7. Michael Duffy: An Appreciation
    (pp. 1-10)
    Roger Knight
  8. Introduction
    (pp. 11-26)
    Richard Harding

    For most people naval history is the story of dramatic events. It is the story of powerful technologies in the form of warships, from galleons to nuclear submarines. It is also the story of the courage, determination and perseverance of the people that sailed and fought in these vessels and the grand theatre of battle ranging across seas and oceans that had tremendous consequences for societies ashore. Today, naval history touches the public most obviously in the commemoration of those events, such as the four-hundredth anniversary of the Spanish Armada, 1588, or the bicentenary of the Battle of Trafalgar, 1805....

  9. Leadership:: The Place of the Hero

    • 1 Admiral Rainier’s Management Challenges, 1794–1805
      (pp. 29-42)
      Peter Ward

      At the end of the eighteenth century the East Indies Command was a junior one, warranting a commodore in peacetime and a rear admiral during times of war. Yet it had two elements which made it unique amongst all the challenges that faced Royal Naval flag officers around the globe. Firstly, there was its enormous size, over 30 million square miles with a journey of 15,000 to 16,000 miles between Britain and the farthest reaches of the station. The time taken for the various routes is explored in the section ‘Communication and Intelligence’ below. But the timing meant that, to...

    • 2 ‘Neglect or Treason’: Leadership Failure in the Mid-Eighteenth-Century Royal Navy
      (pp. 43-58)
      Richard Harding

      The traditional history of the Royal Navy is a history of heroes. Long before the emergence of professional naval history, the purpose of the past was, explicitly, to instruct the present in preferred modes on conduct. From Jesuit education to classical education, the story of great deeds provided the content, narrative structure and purpose of history. With the emergence of modern history schools in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, the central role of hero retained its hold on naval and military history. For most of the time since, the idea of leadership has been associated with the heroic...

  10. Leadership and Organisational Frictions:: Contested Territories

    • 3 Who Has Command? The Royal Artillerymen aboard Royal Navy Warships in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars
      (pp. 61-76)
      Gareth Cole

      Warfare is much more than battles, operations, admirals and generals. This was as true in the long eighteenth century as it is today. Essential to any victory, either at sea or on land, are adequate and guaranteed logistics, a firm administrative structure and clear lines of command. This chapter will examine the latter two areas during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. It is not possible to present a full study of these in one chapter so the case study of Royal Artillerymen serving on Royal Navy warships will be used to exemplify the larger issues.

      In the period under...

    • 4 ‘The Marine Officer is a Raw Lad, and therefore Troublesome’: Royal Naval Officers and the Officers of the Marines, 1755–1797
      (pp. 77-92)
      Britt Zerbe

      The command hierarchy of a ship-of-the-line in the eighteenth century has been widely written about within recent naval historiography. However, one area that has been largely overlooked is the conflict, in relation to their place in the ship’s hierarchy, between the British Marine Corps officers and their Royal Navy counterparts and their eventual acceptance. The conflict reinforces the perception of the growing authority and centralization of command by the Admiralty. From the very start of the new marine divisions in 1755, the Admiralty constructed the new command structure in such a way as to integrate the marines, yet divide them...

  11. Management Capability and the Exercise of Naval Power

    • 5 High Exertions and Difficult Cases: The Work of the Transport Agent at Portsmouth and Southampton, 1795–1797
      (pp. 95-108)
      Roger Morriss

      In 1987 the Clarendon Press published Michael Duffy’s book, Soldiers, Sugar and Sea Power. The British Expeditions to the West Indies and the War Against Revolutionary France.¹ The book revealed the achievements and the tragedy of Britain’s ‘blue water’ policy in the French Revolutionary War. This paper aims to complement his book by revealing some of the administrative efforts that facilitated the expeditions. Its principal source is a copybook of letters received by Captain Daniel Woodriff, agent for transports at Portsmouth and Southampton from 1795 to 1797.² His work is here placed in its broader context, which indicates how the...

    • 6 Forgotten or Ignored, the Officers at Invergordon: ‘We are doing this for you as well you know’
      (pp. 109-122)
      Mike Farquharson-Roberts

      This chapter looks at a forgotten part of the Royal Navy of the 1920s and 1930s – its junior executive officers. Most junior regular naval officers are always in the background; only when they become commanders, captains and flag officers do they move forward on the stage. Otherwise they are almost a ‘dull, slight, cloudy naught’.¹ What of these officers; how were they trained and how were their careers managed? In particular, what of their morale and personal concerns?

      First, a note on sources and in particular Admiralty Fleet Orders (AFOs) as they were known after 1923.² These were the...

    • 7 ‘To Excite the Whole Company to Courage and Bravery’: The Incentivisation of British Privateering Crews, 1702–1815
      (pp. 123-140)
      David J. Starkey

      Privateering has been viewed from various perspectives by academic researchers. Historians have tended to focus on the economic and military significance of privateering in particular nations or ports during particular wars or epochs. This not only reflects the character of a business that was generally authorised by, and in theory benefited, nation states during time of war, but also the fact that the documentary evidence underpinning most historical studies was generated by national institutions, chiefly prize courts and admiralties. Within these confines, much of the research effort has been expended on establishing the scale of privateering, generally in terms of...

  12. The Evolution of Management Training in the Royal Navy, 1800–1950

    • 8 New Kinds of Discipline: The Royal Navy in the Second Half of the Nineteenth Century
      (pp. 143-156)
      Oliver Walton

      Since Andrew Gordon’s influential examination of command in the Royal Navy of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries,¹ there has been little attempt to extend this analysis beyond the operation of fleets to look at the level of the ship, where command shades into management. Following Churchill’s famous list of the traditions of the Royal Navy as being rum, sodomy and the lash, the widespread view of naval discipline in the nineteenth century has continued to be centred on corporal punishment. In fairness, corporal punishment was a key topic of debate for contemporaries in the second half of the nineteenth...

    • 9 Towards a Hierarchy of Management: The Victorian and Edwardian Navy, 1860–1918
      (pp. 157-172)
      Mary Jones

      The years from 1860 to 1918 saw the Royal Navy move from marked decline to rapid expansion; from 834 lieutenants in 1883 to 2,227 in 1914. It was a navy which had come from the Old Navy of ad hoc, dispersed sailing ships to the battlefleet New Navy, ready (and enthusiastic)¹ to take on any nation that threatened its hegemony. Lord Chatfield declared, ‘It was a transformation, not only of material development of the Service, but of the mentality of the whole personnel’.² It is this transitional change, involving as it did an incremental change in management that is the...

    • 10 Leadership Training for Midshipmen, c.1919–1939
      (pp. 173-192)
      Elinor Romans

      The principal aim of the inter-war Royal Navy’s officer training systems was to imbue young officers with ‘Officer-Like Qualities’; an undefined although well understood set of values which can be divided into three broad areas; seamanship, leadership and gentlemanliness. Officer-like qualities thus encompassed all the characteristics required in a good naval officer; including courage, determination, honour, social graces and technical knowledge.

      The Royal Navy employed a wide variety of officers who entered and were trained in varying ways. Medical officers and chaplains entered the navy as qualified professionals and went through a short course designed to teach them to behave...

  13. Select Bibliography
    (pp. 193-202)
  14. Index
    (pp. 203-206)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 207-207)