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City in a GardenEnvironmental Transformations and Racial Justice in Twentieth-Century Austin, Texas$
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Andrew M. Busch

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469632643

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469632643.001.0001

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Industry without Smokestacks

Industry without Smokestacks

Knowledge Labor, the University of Texas, and Suburban Austin

(p.108) 5 Industry without Smokestacks
City in a Garden

Andrew M. Busch

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter looks at Austin’s emergent tech industry in the 1950s and 1960s and the role that the University of Texas at Austin played in that grow. It argues that the city promoted a natural landscape and environmental amenities aimed at attracting knowledge workers and non-industrial businesses. A close relationship between city leaders and university leaders emerged, personified in J. Neils Thompson who directed a university research facility and also served on the chamber of commerce. Tracor emerged as Austin’s first nationally-recognized spinoff company. The city and region grew dramatically.

Keywords:   University of Texas, J. Neils Thompson, Tracor, knowledge economy, research and development, demographic growth, Balcones Research Center

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