History uncovered

10 June 2016

A new archive based on the influential work of the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations (TIHR) has been launched in partnership with Canterbury Christ Church University’s Business School and the Wellcome Library.

The Tavistock Institute Archive Project aims to make the work of the TIHR publicly accessible to a wider audience. The blog will preview examples and findings from the Institute’s 70 year history, as well as provide a forum for discussion on the emerging archive.

The THIR has spent the last 70 years studying and researching human behaviour and relations to develop a better understanding of organisations, communities and societies to achieve greater and more efficient changes to our working life and surrounding environment.

Antonio Sama, Knowledge Exchange Support Lead for the University’s Business School, and a core contributor to the blog, said: “The TIHR archive contains significant socio-historical material. Its work has influenced how we view and understand organisations, and demonstrates how we can apply Social Sciences to support and develop society."

Professor Heather McLaughlin, Director of Canterbury Christ Church University Business School, commented: “This is an exciting project for our School and fits with our ethos of community and high quality education, research, and business engagement. We are delighted to help showcase the excellent work of the THIR and look forward to a productive relationship”.

Juliet Scott, the THIR Archive Curator and artist-in-residence, said: “I lead this truly exciting and ground breaking project with its ethos of collaborative archival practice and its possibilities for bringing the unique and innovative social science approach of The Tavistock Institute to a renewed and wider audience.”

Amanda Engineer, Archive Project Manager within Special Collections and Research, said: “The Tavistock Institute’s archive fits comfortably within the Wellcome Library’s collecting policy. It is now one of the Wellcome Library’s 700-plus archive collections which also include the papers of Francis Crick, The Family Planning Association, Marie Stopes, Melanie Klein, National Childbirth Trust, Donald Winnicott and The Mental Aftercare Association”.

Notes to editors

  • The Tavistock Institute of Human Relations (TIHR) applies social science to contemporary issues and problems. It was established as a not for profit organisation with charitable purpose in 1947.The Institute is engaged with evaluation and action research, organisational development and change consultancy, executive coaching and professional development, all in service of supporting sustainable change and ongoing learning. The TIHR is dedicated to the study of human relations for the purpose of bettering working life and conditions for all humans within their organisations, communities and broader societies and to the influence of environment in all its aspects on the formation or development of human character or capacity; to conduct research and provide opportunities for learning through experience for this purpose; to publish the results of such study and research; to train students in or for any branches of the said study.
  • Canterbury Christ Church University Business School is committed to a professional and practical approach to studying business and management across a range of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.  It is also engaged in high profile research and knowledge exchange projects on social enterprise, social return on investment, impact studies and markets. 
  • The Wellcome Trust is an independent global charitable foundation dedicated to improving health, because good health makes life better. The Trust provides annually £700 million to support bright minds in science, the humanities and the social sciences, as well as education, public engagement and the application of research to medicine. The Wellcome Library, which sits within the Wellcome Trust, is one of the world’s major resources for the global history of human and animal medicine and health from ancient times to the present day. The Library operates alongside and within the same building as Wellcome Collection, a free visitor destination for the incurably curious.

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.

With 17,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.

  • 95% of our UK undergraduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
  • We are one of the South East’s largest providers of education, training and skills leading to public service careers.

*2013/14 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey


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Last edited: 14/12/2018 23:00:00