Türkiye’de Bir Yönetim Danışmanı: Urwick Orr and Partners ve Türk Hava Yolları’ndaki Danışmanlık Faaliyetleri (1967-1971)

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Yalçınkaya A.

Eskişehir Osmangazi Üniversitesi İİBF Dergisi, vol.15, no.2, pp.583-602, 2020 (Journal Indexed in ESCI)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 15 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Title of Journal : Eskişehir Osmangazi Üniversitesi İİBF Dergisi
  • Page Numbers: pp.583-602


The aim of this study is to examine the consulting services of Urwick Orr and Partners to Turkish Airlines from 1967 to 1971. It is also aimed to explore the relationship between Urwick Orr and Partners as an international consulting firm and Türk Sevk ve İdare Derneği as a local partner. Last but not least, it is aimed to describe the historical development of management consultancy in Turkey as a peripheral country and to contribute business and management history literature of Turkey. The theoretical framework of the study is the diffusion of management knowledge and practices across contexts and countries. After the World War II, direct U.S. influence was the strongest for the transfer of management models. In this regard, for the diffusion of management knowledge, the United States is the one and only center. Moreover, during most of the twentieth century, the United States was the main producer and even more importantly the main diffuser of management knowledge and practices worldwide. Empirical studies showed that the vast majority of the carriers of management knowledge originated in the United States, including the major foundations (e.g. Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation), management consultancy firms (e.g. Booz Allen Hamilton, Urwick Orr Partners) and some business schools (Harvard Business School). Those abovementioned studies highlighted the role and activities of the carriers in the transfer of management knowledge. Sahlin-Andersson and Engwall (2002) used the carrier concept when analyzing those who are professing, providing, and circulating management ideas and models. With the expansion of carriers such as consultants, business schools and the media the supply of management ideas has expanded. According to Sahlin-Andersson and Engwall (2002), carriers ‘circulate management knowledge’ and these carriers are categorized into four types of organizations: multi-divisional companies, business schools, management consultancies, and media companies. Engwall, Kipping and Üsdiken (2016) also stated that like business schools and business media the management consultancy is one of the most important carriers of management knowledge from center to periphery. In the context of post–World War II reconstruction, some organizations at the intergovernmental level, such as the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) and the European Productivity Agency have played a very important role at the transfer of management knowledge and models (Boel 2003). Compared to the existing literature for the more industrialized and developed countries, empirical research on the transfer of management knowledge from center to periphery is very weak. For filling this gap in the literature, a historical narrative approach is constructed to allow for in-depth analysis of consulting services of Urwick Orr and Partners to Turkish Airlines from 1967 to 1971. To reach the aim of the study, a triangulated data-collection approach adopted. The data are gathered from multiple sources that include semi-structured interviews, archival materials, various kinds of text and commentary and archival articles of newspapers. Narrative analysis refers to a cluster of analytic methods for interpreting texts or visual data that have a storied form. For this reason, narrative analysis is used in this study to explore the context, content and scope of consulting services and to construct a meaningful narrative. The temporal phases approach is adopted in the presentation of the research results. According to Reay et.al. (2019), temporal phases approach is closely associated with longitudinal research and one of the main advantages of the temporal approach is that it maintains the integrity of findings and produces a readable narrative. Research results show that, this consulting service considered as a part of an extensive rationalization project of State Economic Enterprises in Turkey. In this regard, it is found that this consulting service is related with U.S. technical assistance to Turkey after World War II. U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) and Organisation for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC) the predecessor of the OECD are main carriers of the knowledge transfer. Those organizations made special surveys on the State Economic Enterprises in Turkey and prepared two series of reports on the rationalization and reorganization of Turkish State Economic Enterprises. According to those reports, it was should be reorganized managerial and rationalize the activities of Turkish Airlines. For this purpose, State Planning Organization (DPT) hired Urwick Orr and Partners as a consultancy firm to reorganize Turkish Airlines. This rationalization and reorganization project was funded by OECD. Urwick Orr and Partners was main organization and Turkish Management Development Center which established by funds from Ford Foundation and OECD was the local partner in this project. The project suddenly ended in 1971, because of both political instability of Turkey and its reflections on Turkish Airlines. It is concluded that Urwick Orr and Partners and Turkish Management Development Center were the main carriers of this knowledge transfer project. As Kipping, Engwall and Üsdiken (2008) emphasized, the state and various kinds of its associations have played important role in this transfer process.

Bu çalışmada, Urwick Orr and Partners’ın Türk Hava Yolları’na yönelik 1967 ile 1971 yılları arasındaki danışmanlık faaliyetleri incelenmektedir. Bu amaçla, Urwick Orr and Partners’ın Türk Hava Yolları’na yönelik danışmanlık faaliyetlerini derinlemesine analiz etmeye imkân veren tarihsel bir anlatı analizi kurulmuştur. Çalışmanın amacına ulaşmak için aralarında arşiv malzemeleri, çok çeşitli metinler ile gazete haberlerinin olduğu çeşitlendirilmiş bir veri seti derlenmiştir. Danışmanlık faaliyetlerinin bağlam, içerik ve kapsamını keşfetmek için çalışmada anlatı analizi kullanılmıştır. Çalışma sonuçları, söz konusu danışmanlık faaliyetlerinin Kamu İktisadi Teşebbüsleri’ne yönelik daha geniş kapsamlı bir rasyonalizasyon projesinin bir parçası olduğunu göstermektedir