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Thursday, December 12, 2019


82 Annual Meeting of the VHB

March 17 - 20 2020

Frankfurt a. M., Germany

Lecturers under National Socialism


Introductory Remarks

In 1999 Georg Schreyögg (Berlin) submitted a project proposal to the Executive Board of the German Academic Association for Business Research to investigate the fate of business studies lecturers who were persecuted by the National Socialist regime. The Executive Board subsequently set up a task group to examine the proposal comprising professors Eduard Gaugler (Mannheim) as moderator, Arnold Picot (Munich), Erich Potthoff (Meerbusch), Dieter Schneider (Bochum) and Georg Schreyögg (Berlin).


The task group (a) defined the project’s target group, (b) prepared a catalog of possible lecturers who had been harmed or persecuted under the National Socialist (Nazi) regime and (c) conducted two surveys among predominantly senior representatives of the subject and universities (with the subject Business Studies in the Third Reich) in 2001 with a view to identifying business academics who had potentially been persecuted. To evaluate the initial results and conduct additional research, the task group enlisted the help of historian Jürgen Kocka (Berlin), who at the time was also the president of the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB), as a project advisor. A PhD student of Kocka’s, Peter Mantel, was given the task of examining the topic as part of his doctorate. In collaboration with the VHB task group, Mantel, Kocka and Dieter Schneider submitted an application to the German Research Foundation (DFG) for a grant to launch a project on business studies under National Socialism (in particular with a view to the persecution of business studies lecturers), which the DFG approved in April 2004.


In 2007 Mantel presented the results of his study in a dissertation on the institutional and personal-historical development of business studies during the Third Reich (in particular with a view to lecturers in the subject among the victims of National Socialism). His findings especially draw upon previously unexplored sources from university and ministry archives. The key findings of his research are presented in the following, focusing in particular on a brief description of the lives of the business academics persecuted. The statements are intended to provide initial indications of the history of business studies and the persecutions during the Third Reich. Moreover, the (brief) description of the lives of those persecuted is also aimed at remembering them.


A far more detailed description with considerably more in-depth issues, including additional literature and detailed references, can be found in Peter Mantel’s dissertation, which was published by Gabler Verlag in Wiesbaden, 2009. A detailed description of the VHB task group University Lecturers in Business Studies under the Nazi Regime can be found in Eduard Gaugler’s foreword to the 65th FBS volume (Peter Mantel: "Schicksale betriebswirtschaftlicher Hochschullehrer im Dritten Reich”, edited by Eduard Gaugler in the Forschungsstelle für Betriebswirtschaft und Sozialpraxis e.V. (FBS) series, Mannheim 2009.)


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