– Formed in 1947, the Tavistock Institute is an independent not-for-profit organization which seeks to combine research in the social sciences with professional practice. Problems of institution-building and organizational design and change are being tackled in all sectors – government, industry and commerce, health and welfare, education, etc. – nationally and internationally, and clients range from multinationals to small community groups. A growth area has been the use of a developmental approach to evaluation of new and experimental programs, particularly in health, education and community development. This has also produced new training events alongside the regular program of group relations conferences. The Institute owns and edits the monthly journal Human Relations (published by Plenum Press) which is now in its 48th year, and has recently launched (in conjunction with Sage Publications) a new journal Evaluation.
Three elements combine to make the Institute unusual, if not unique: it has the independence of being entirely self-financing, with no subsidies from the government or other sources; the action research orientation places it between, but not in, the worlds of academia and consultancy; and its range of disciplines include anthropology, economics, organizational behavior, political science, psychoanalysis, psychology and sociology.
The ideology of American foundations was created by the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations in London. In 1921, the Duke of Bedford, Marquess of Tavistock, the 11th Duke, gave a building to the Institute to study the effect of shellshock on British soldiers who survived World War I. Its purpose was to establish the “breaking point” of men under stress, under the direction of the British Army Bureau of Psychological Warfare, commanded by Sir John Rawlings-Reese.
Tavistock Institute is headquartered in London. Its prophet, Sigmond Freud, settled in Maresfield Gardens when he moved to England. He was given a mansion by Princess Bonaparte. Tavistock’s pioneer work in behavioral science along Freudian lines of “controlling” humans established it as the world center of foundation ideology. Its network now extends from the University of Sussex to the U.S. through the Stanford Research Institute, Esalen, MIT, Hudson Institute, Heritage Foundation, Center of Strategic and International Studies at Georgetown, where State Dept. personal are trained, US Air Force Intelligence, and the Rand and Mitre corporations. The personnel of the corporations are required to undergo indoctrination at one or more of these Tavistock controlled institutions. A network of secret groups, the Mont Pelerin Society, Trilateral Commission, Ditchley Foundation, and the Club of Rome is conduit for instructions to the Tavistock network.