Sustaining Corporate Class Consciousness Across the New Liquid Managerial Elite in Britain

Davis, Aeron. 2017. Sustaining Corporate Class Consciousness Across the New Liquid Managerial Elite in Britain. British Journal of Sociology, 68(2), pp. 234-253. ISSN 0007-1315 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article asks: how is class consciousness and cohesiveness amongst the UK business elite maintained in the 21st Century?

Elite studies traditionally sought to account for the construction and circulation of dominant ideology through exclusive education systems, institutional board interlocks and club memberships. The problem is that business elite membership of all these institutions has been steady declining in recent decades. Contemporary corporate elites now appear more mobile and fragmented in an age of globalisation. However, class cohesion amongst business leaders appears as strong as ever after decades of neoliberal policy hegemony. So, how are such ideas, norms and values circulated and maintained? This study tried to answer this question drawing on a set of 30 semi-structured interviews with top UK CEOs and a demographic audit of current FTSE 100 CEOs. The findings suggest that three additional means of achieving business elite coherence have become more significant: professional business education, semi-formal but regular meeting sites, and specialist business media.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):


business elites, ideology, education, interlocks, media

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Media, Communications and Cultural Studies
Media, Communications and Cultural Studies > Goldsmiths Leverhulme Media Research Centre
Politics > Political Economy Research Centre


June 2017Published
2 April 2017Published Online
1 June 2016Accepted

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

07 Apr 2017 09:29

Last Modified:

10 Nov 2020 14:42

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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