Most of the existing literature on European history of economic thought concentrates on the major works of leading figures such as von Boehm-Bawerk, Menger, Pareto, Walras, Weber and Wicksell. These economists exerted enormous influences on the development of economics, despite their differing theories and approaches. Yet, there were many other economists whose contribution to the field has not been described in existing literature. This book resurrects these forgotten economists and presents 17 specially commissioned essays on their lives and contributions to economics. As such this book presents a fuller picture of the development of economics in Europe during the late 19th and early 20th century.
The authors examine the economists' original ideas, and discuss how their work contributed to the development of economic thought. In addition the contributors look at the spread of ideas, of their acceptance or rejection, which can be explained partly by physical and linguistic or national isolation. They also consider influences on economic thought both between and within countries, and of other disciplines on economics; and as a consequence a sense of national identity in the practice of economics is developed. Finally, the authors present ideas on the path-dependent process of the development of economics and of the alternative paths that were around at the time, as well as on the origins of econometrics and differing attitudes towards statistical and mathematical approaches.
This long-overdue addition to the literature will be welcomed by historians of economic thought, those studying the lives of economists as well as those interested in the philosophy and evolution of economics.
Edited by the late Warren J. Samuels, former Professor Emeritus of Economics, Michigan State University, US
Contents: Introduction (W.J. Samuels) 1. The Economist M.J.H Cobbenhagen 2. Clement Colson (1853-1939) 3. Christiaan Cornelissen (1864-1942) 4. Sam de Wolff (1878-1960) 5. Francois Divisa (1889-1964) 6. Robert Gilbrat and the Law of Proportional Effect 7. Johan G. Koopmans 8. Hermann Laurent (1841-1908) 9. The French Connection 10. Paul Leroy-Beaulieu and His `Cheap Government' 11. Lucien March (1859-1933) 12. The Economic Theories and Social Reform Proposals of Ernest Solvay 13. Gustaf Steffen 14. Ed van Cleeff, Multiple Meanings of Planning and the Prehistory of the Central Planning Bureau 15. Elisabeth Caroline van Dorp 16. The Danish Economist Jens Warming 17. Harald Westergaard