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The Institutionalist Movement in American Economics, 1918–1947
Science and Social Control

$34.00 ( ) USD

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Part of Historical Perspectives on Modern Economics

  • Date Published: February 2011
  • availability: This ISBN is for an eBook version which is distributed on our behalf by a third party.
  • format: Adobe eBook Reader
  • isbn: 9780511985768

$ 34.00 USD ( )
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About the Authors
  • This book provides a detailed picture of the institutionalist movement in American economics concentrating on the period between the two World Wars. The discussion brings a new emphasis on the leading role of Walton Hamilton in the formation of institutionalism, on the special importance of the ideals of “science” and “social control” embodied within the movement, on the large and close network of individuals involved, on the educational programs and research organizations created by institutionalists, and on the significant place of the movement within the mainstream of interwar American economics. In these ways the book focuses on the group most closely involved in the active promotion of the movement, on how they themselves constructed it, on its original intellectual appeal and promise, and on its institutional supports and sources of funding. The reasons for the movement's loss of appeal in the years around the end of World War II are also discussed, particularly in terms of the arrival of Keynesian economics, econometrics, and new definitions of “science” as applied to economics.

    • Explores institutionalism as a major movement in American economics, in contrast to utilitarian self-interest as the key sole economic criterion
    • Relates the movement to the ideals of 'science' and 'social control' in intellectual history and academic politics
    • Examines both the structural and programatic bases of institutionalism
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    • Co-winner (in Hardback) of the 2013 Best Monograph Award, European Society for the History of Economic Thought

    Reviews & endorsements

    "Rutherford has written a truly outstanding book on the Institutionalist Movement of the inter-war period that is unlikely to be surpassed! Of course there will be amendments here and there, but his interpretation of the central thrust of the Movement will remain unchanged."
    Frederic S. Lee, History of Economic Thought and Policy

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2011
    • format: Adobe eBook Reader
    • isbn: 9780511985768
    • contains: 9 tables
    • availability: This ISBN is for an eBook version which is distributed on our behalf by a third party.
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Introduction:
    1. Institutionalism in the history of economics
    2. Understanding institutional economics
    Part II. Institutionalist Careers:
    3. Walton Hamilton: institutionalism and the public control of business
    4. Morris Copeland: institutionalism and statistics
    Part III. Centers of Institutional Economics:
    5. Institutionalism at Chicago and beyond
    6. Amherst and the Brookings Graduate School
    7. Wisconsin institutionalism
    8. Institutionalism at Columbia University
    9. The NBER and the foundations
    Part IV. Challenges and Changes:
    10. The institutionalist reaction to Keynesian economics
    11. Neoclassical challenges and institutionalist responses
    Part V. Conclusion:
    12. Institutionalism in retrospect.

  • Author

    Malcolm Rutherford, University of Victoria, British Columbia
    Malcolm Rutherford is Professor of Economics at the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, and the leading authority on the history of American institutional economics. He has published widely on this topic in History of Political Economy, the Journal of the History of Economic Thought, the European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, the Journal of Economic Perspectives and Labor History. He is the author of Institutions in Economics: The Old and the New Institutionalism, published by Cambridge University Press (1994). Professor Rutherford has served as President of the History of Economics Society and the Association for Evolutionary Economics.


    • Co-winner (in Hardback) of the 2013 Best Monograph Award, European Society for the History of Economic Thought

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