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Inventory of the Kenneth R. Hansen papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Accruals
  • Related Materials
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Title: Kenneth R. Hansen papers
    Date (inclusive): 1948-1982
    Collection Number: 93056
    Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Archives
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 57 manuscript boxes (23.8 linear feet)
    Abstract: Speeches and writings, correspondence, memoranda, reports, studies, and printed matter related to the economic development of developing countries, technology transfer to developing countries, and American trade with and investment in developing countries. Some materials relate to American foreign trade and foreign aid policy during the presidential administrations of John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Creator: Hansen, Kenneth R. (Kenneth Rudolph), 1923-1981.


    The collection is open for research; materials must be requested at least two business days in advance of intended use.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Kenneth R. Hansen papers, [Box no., Folder no. or title], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1993.


    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at https://searchworks.stanford.edu. Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Related Materials

    Annelise Graebner Anderson papers, Hoover Institution Archives
    J. Burke Knapp papers, Hoover Institution Archives
    Asia Foundation records, Hoover Institution Archives
    Joel Bernstein papers, Hoover Institution Archives
    Records of the Office of Management and Budget (Record Group 51), United States National Archives

    Biographical Note

    An American economist, Kenneth R. Hansen was assistant director of the Bureau of the Budget and a consultant for development projects in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Hansen was born in St. Anthony, Idaho, on June 1, 1923. He began his government work in the Military Intelligence Service at the start of World War II and served as an executive officer of that group from 1946 to 1949. From 1948 to 1949, Hansen was the chief of economic intelligence for the United States Allied Commission for Austria (USACA). Hansen was a special assistant for the Economic Cooperation Authority mission as chief to Austria under the Marshall Plan, where he dealt with problems of trade and payments, including East-West trade and currency reforms. From 1952 to 1954, he worked in the Mutual Security Agency negotiating efforts to control East-West trade and forming economic policy for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). In 1958, Hansen led a group of international sociologists and economists preparing a seven-year development plan for Iran. He returned to the U.S. in 1961, when he became assistant director of the Bureau of the Budget. He left that position in 1964.
    After Hansen resigned from government service, he served as the vice president for corporate planning of Syntax Corporation from 1964 to 1968. After 1968, he became a consulting economist for various organizations that implemented projects in developing countries. Hansen became president of the American and Canadian operations of the urban planning organization Doxiadis Associates in 1971. Returning to California, Hansen consulted for organizations in Iran, Turkey, Sudan, Bangladesh, and other countries, as well as heading a team of Harvard University faculty advising the government of Singapore on transportation. He served as an economic consultant for a variety of organizations, including the World Bank and Dames & Moore, as well as serving as a senior advisor to the Sinai, Egypt Development Program and the Volvo Lahore Transportation Project. Hansen passed away in 1981 in Los Altos Hills, California.
    Kenneth R. Hansen obituary. New York Times. 31 August 1981

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The bulk of the collection relates to Kenneth R. Hansen's consulting work, including reports and correspondence concerning various projects in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Many of these project reports were either written by Hansen or shaped and influenced by him. Hansen was concerned with issues such as economic development, mass transportation, urban studies, improving human settlements, agriculture, technology transfer, and delivery of medicines and medical technology. He often worked on projects for multiple companies in the same region. Although the majority of the material dates from after Hansen resigned as assistant director in the Bureau of the Budget, some of his correspondence from that time period can be found where noted, such as in box 3. For documents related to the Bureau of the Budget, see materials dated from 1961 to 1964, when Hansen was employed by that organization. For a detailed list of Hansen's consulting activities and professional career, see his curriculum vitae in box 2.
    Hansen was involved in several studies of Iran, including serving as the field director of the Harvard Economic Advisory Group to Iran. His correspondence with Edward S. Mason, director of that group, can be found in boxes 2, 20, 47 and 56. In 1975, Hansen was an advisor to the Center for Spatial Planning of the Plan & Budget Organization of the Iranian government, where he helped to develop the National Spatial Strategy Plan. This study proposed spatial planning policies to deal with the demographic and social changes caused by rapid economic growth in Iran. In 1976, Hansen consulted on a project for AB Volvo in Sweden, which produced studies on urban transportation in Shiraz and Isfahan.
    In addition to that project, Hansen worked with AB Volvo on the Volvo Lahore Transportation Project, which aimed to provide a comprehensive urban transport system to the 4.5 million residents of Lahore, Pakistan, and provided 300 Volvo buses for use. Reports from this project can be found throughout the collection, including in box 36 and box 57.
    In 1976, Hansen became a consultant for Dames & Moore, working on multiple projects for the corporation, including the Sinai, Egypt Development Program, where he served as a senior advisor. The Camp David Accords, which Egypt and Israel signed in 1978, led to the signing of a peace treaty between the two countries in 1979. One result of this treaty was that the Sinai Peninsula was returned to Egypt, which led to a development focus in that area. The study aimed to provide a development strategy concerning areas such as water resources, usable resources, agricultural and fishery activities, industrial location, population, and tourism. Materials from this project can be found where indicated throughout the collection.
    Hansen served as the advisor to the Secretary General for the Habitat: United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, which was held in 1976 in Vancouver. The main outcome of this conference was the establishment of UN-HABITAT, a United Nations program with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all people. Materials for this conference can be found in box 5, box 25, and where indicated.
    Hansen served as an advisor to the government of Singapore, where he was the head of a project to advise the government on urban transportation alternatives, including the evaluation of an underground heavy rail system. The Singapore Mass Transit Study was managed in accordance with a project document agreed upon by the Singapore government and the United Nations Development Programme (with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development acting as its executing agency). Phase I of the study began in 1972 and examined five alternative public transport systems, concluding that a rail mass transit system was the best option. The second phase of the study, which began in 1975, had the goal of providing an examination of the technical and financial feasibility of such a system. In 1980, the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Review Team, a group of Harvard University specialists led by Hansen, published a report titled "Singapore's Transport and Urban Development Options," which suggested that an all-bus transit system might be preferable to a rail system. In 1981, the MRT Review Team assisted the Singapore MRT Authority in the Comprehensive Traffic Study (CTS), which determined that an all-bus system would be inadequate to serve Singapore's transportation needs. Materials concerning both the Singapore Mass Transit Study and the Comprehensive Traffic Study can be found throughout the collection under the heading "Singapore mass rapid transit studies."
    In addition to his consulting work, Hansen also gave lectures for various colleges, conferences, and groups, including the National War College, the World Affairs Council, the Committee on Foreign Relations, and the Executive Seminar Centers at New York and Berkeley, California. As a senior fellow at the Adlai Stevenson Institute, he lectured at eleven universities. He spoke at Stanford in 1968 and 1969 as part of the Special Seminar Program and lectured at the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Business from 1968 to 1971. Some of his lectures for Berkeley can be found in box 25. Hansen's lecture materials can be found in the files of the "speeches and writings by Hansen" throughout the collection. His speeches and writings can also be found among his conference and seminar materials, such as in box 47.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    United States. Bureau of the Budget.
    Economic assistance, American.
    East-West trade.
    United States--Commerce.
    United States--Economic policy--1961-1971
    Developing countries.
    Technology transfer.
    Investments, American--Developing countries.
    Economic development.