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Regular version of the site

Article

The history of the Austrian commercial colleges from their foundation as independent educational institutes to full integration into public administration (1850s-1950s)

Entreprises et histoire. 2012. Vol. 65. No. 4. P. 986-1011.
After the revolutionary years of 1848-1849, the bourgeoisie was ready to become the leading economic power in the Habsburg Empire. The newly granted economic liberty requested young people well trained to manage the new ventures. To meet these requirements, private initiatives founded and financed the first commercial colleges, based upon liberal ideas and driven by excellence in teaching. At the end of World War I, when times got difficult and the schools suffered heavy losses in their economic base, the schools requested to become fully integrated into public administration. This step proved fatal when the national socialists gained power in 1938 and the schools became a tool in the abolishment of liberalism – the very idea on which the schools were founded.