Academic journal article The Accounting Historians Journal

Book Reviews: Bill and Ruth Cooper and Their Friends

Academic journal article The Accounting Historians Journal

Book Reviews: Bill and Ruth Cooper and Their Friends

Article excerpt

This book provides an introduction to the life of William W. (Bill) Cooper. Bill has served several disciplines as a prolific researcher, teacher and area administrator. He is a member of the Accounting Hall of Fame. This volume is a collection of speeches and essays in his honor written by former students and colleagues, expressing appreciation for Bill's professional and personal influence on them. As such, this volume does not provide a critical perspective as to the significance of Bill Cooper's contributions; it is clearly appreciative in tone. However, it does provide the reader with a personal insight into the career of Bill Cooper.

The former students and colleagues who participated in this activity came from all eras of Bill Cooper's career including the undergraduate days at the University of Chicago, graduate school experiences at Columbia University, and faculty and administrative positions at Carnegie Mellon, as well as his current faculty and administrative responsibilities at the University of Texas at Austin. Through these speeches and essays one begins to understand events that have shaped Bill Cooper's approach to problems. Herbert Simon discussed their time together at the University or Chicago. This was during the Great Depression and such world events as the Spanish Civil War. These events caused people to question the status quo and discuss alternatives. Simon posited that the "real education at Chicago was the education of revolution" [p. 10]. Many of the speeches and essays describe Bill Cooper as a "revolutionary" because he looked at problems in new and different ways.

In Cooper's response to the various remarks, he provides an insight about those factors which influenced his approach to problem solving. …

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