This book examines the way in which BASF functions, delving into its corporate governance, financial system, industrial relations, systems of qualification, and relation to other companies in the same sector and to the economy at large. The structure of BASF's social system of production and its change through time are central themes of each of this book's four chronologically organised sections. The corporate history of BASF offers far more than just a glimpse into the functioning of an industrial organisation that has held its own on the market since 1865. It reveals a good deal about the reasons for the extraordinary economic dynamics of the German empire and the enormous expansion of the world economy before World War I. By the same token, BASF's history stands at the centre of Germany's wartime economy during both world wars and highlights both its strengths and its weaknesses.
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