John H Dunning OBE was a British economist and is widely recognised as the father of the field of international business. John H Dunning Centre was renamed in 2008, in honour of the late Professor Dunning, and stands as one of the world’s premier research centres in the field. At the time of his death in 2009, Professor John Dunning was Emeritus Professor of International Business at Henley Business School at the University of Reading.
Professor Dunning joined the University of Reading as the first head of the Department of Economics upon its establishment in 1964. He spent more than 50 years research into the economics of international direct investment and the multinational enterprise and authored, co-authored, or edited 50 books on this subject, as well as publishing in industrial and regional economics.
He also supervised almost 60 doctoral students during his career. He was instrumental in developing the theoretical basis for much of International business, and remains one of the field’s most cited authors.
In 2007 the Dunning centre paid tribute to Professor Dunning, holding the first Reading IB conference to mark both his contribution to the field and his 80th birthday. Professor Dunning was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 2008 birthday honours and received an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters from the University of Reading that same year.
Professor Dunning also held honorary doctorates from the University of Uppsala in Sweden, the Autonomous University of Madrid in Spain, the University of Antwerp in Belgium, the Chinese Culture University in Taiwan and the University of Lund in Sweden. He was also Honorary Professor of International Business at the University of International Business and Economics at Beijing.
In December 2004, he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the annual meeting of the European Academy of International Business in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
In February 2019, The AIB Executive Board awarded a Gold Medal to Professor Dunning at the 50th celebration of the JIBS journal for an exceptional contribution in JIBS in the first 50 years.