The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Chandler, Alfred D. (1918–2007)

  • Walter A. Friedman
Reference work entry


Alfred D. Chandler Jr. (15 September 1918–9 May 2007), a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian who pioneered the field of business history, was born in Guyencourt, Delaware, near Wilmington. He received a bachelor of arts degree from Harvard College in 1940 and served in the US Navy from 1941 to 1945. In the late 1940s, Chandler returned to school to study history, attending the University of North Carolina before going back to Harvard to complete his Ph.D. in 1952. He published a revision of his dissertation as his first book, Henry Varnum Poor: Business Editor, Analyst, and Reformer (1956). Poor (1812–1905), Chandler’s paternal greatgrandfather, was the long-time editor of the American Railroad Journal and Poors Manual of Railroads of the United States. Chandler’s book explained how Poor, through his detailed reports on individual railroad companies and their operations, helped to invent the role of the modern business analyst and investment advisor.


Big business Business history Chandler, Alfred D. Chandlerian Economies of scale Invisible hand Management Visible hand 

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© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Walter A. Friedman
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  1. 1.