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The Evolution of Management Theories: A Literature Review


  • Kwok Angus C. F.

    () (Hong Kong Institute of Technology, Hong Kong)


This paper provides an overview of the evolution of management theories with an emphasis on human resource management (HRM). It examines the early philosophical viewpoints which laid the foundation for the development of management theories. It traces the evolution of management theories from the pre-industrial revolution through the two world wars to the era of rapid economic growth of the 1960s to the 1980s. In recent years, management theories had become more multi-faceted where emphasis has shifted from behavioural science to organisational structures and quality assurance. With rapid globalisation and increasing importance of cultural awareness, the paper concludes that more research will be needed in the area of cross-cultural and multi-national human resource management.

Suggested Citation

  • Kwok Angus C. F., 2014. "The Evolution of Management Theories: A Literature Review," Nang Yan Business Journal, Sciendo, vol. 3(1), pages 28-40, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:vrs:nybujo:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:28-40:n:3

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    Evolution; Management theories; Literature review; M12; M54;

    JEL classification:

    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation
    • M54 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Labor Management


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