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Reconstruction in Great Britain: The People

    Naturevolume 150page685 (1942) | Download Citation



    THE widespread interest in the problems of postwar reconstruction and planning was reflected in the House of Commons debate on December 1 and 2 on an amendment to the Address. The debate was characterized by notable speeches from Mr. Greenwood, Sir William Jowitt and Mr. Anthony Eden. Sir William Jowitt gave a comprehensive but general account of the Government's policy. Sketching the postwar position and stressing the importance of international co-operation in a deliberate effort to improve the standard of living throughout the world in order that consumers abroad may be able to buy that which we produce, he said that he believes we must become as a nation more scientifically minded, prepared, whatever industrial system we adopt, to use scientific methods and to aim at the greatest efficiency in those methods. The Ministerial Committee over which he presides is, he said, trying to work out practical schemes of reconstruction to which effect could be given in the first few years after the War, and presupposing in its plans a social and economic structure designed to secure equality of opportunity and service among all classes of the community. The Ministerial Committee is assisted by an external and an internal committee of highly placed and experienced Civil Servants. Demobilization plans are being prepared; these include the question of education and training for those whose educational careers have been interrupted by the War. With regard to getting the workers back into industry, the Government considers that each industry should be surveyed separately, because the structure of industry will not fit into a common mould. The points of contact between Government aricl industry require strengthening, and Sir William said that capital must be ready to seek new opportunities and labour must be prepared to be more fluid.

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