The Robert Oakeshott Lecture 2019

The EOA’s annual lecture commemorates and celebrates the life, legacy, and work of its founder, and employee ownership pioneer, Robert Oakeshott.

In 2019 Professor Mariana Mazzucato PhD delivered the Employee Ownership Association’s (EOA) 2019 Robert Oakeshott Lecture, titled Rethinking Value and Public Purpose: a mission-oriented approach.

Robert Oakeshott founded the EOA in 1979 – 40 years ago – and the lecture is a key feature of the celebrations for EOA40.

Mariana Mazzucato

Mariana is a celebrated economist – named “one of the three most important thinkers on innovation” by the New Republic – advising policy makers around the world and is known for her strong challenge to rethink capitalism to create global value through her books and articles, advisory roles and speaking engagements.

Mariana, a professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London (UCL), is Founder and Director of the UCL Institute for Innovation & Public Purpose (IIPP), which is dedicated to rethinking the role of public policy in shaping both the rate of economic growth and its direction – and training the next generation of global leaders to build partnerships that can address mission-oriented societal goals.

Robert Oakeshott Lecture sponsors

PostlethwaiteEOA member Postlethwaite, an employee owned law firm specialising in all forms of employee share ownership, supports the lecture, which was established to commemorate and celebrate the life and legacy of EOA founder Robert Oakeshott after his death in 2011.


As a prelude to Mariana’s lecture there was a speech by David Erdal, who worked closely with Robert Oakeshott on a number of employee ownership projects, including taking his family’s business Tullis Russell into employee ownership, ahead of becoming interim MD of Job Ownership Ltd (the EOA) when Robert retired in 1999. David has authored two books on employee ownership Local Heroes – the Story of Loch Fyne Oysters and Beyond the Corporation: Humanity working.

Video, photos and write-up

Read our event write up here





Legacy of our founder

The EOA’s annual lecture commemorates and celebrates of the life, legacy and work of EOA founder and employee ownership pioneer Robert Oakeshott.

Each year in his memory the EOA works with Robert’s family members and invites an industry leader to deliver a lecture that is topical.

Robert, a journalist, founded Job Ownership Ltd (JOL) in 1979 with the support of companies such as the John Lewis Partnership and international polymers manufacturer Scott Bader. Robert’s book ‘Jobs and Fairness’ is acknowledged as the definitive study on employee ownership in the UK and overseas.

Read more about Robert and the history of the EOA on our EOA40 page


Lecture gallery: