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Book part
Publication date: 28 October 2019

Nicolai J. Foss

This is a, somewhat indirect, rejoinder to Boettke (2019, this volume, Chapter 1). Doing Austrian economics is low prestige: Austrian economics does not get published in…

Abstract

This is a, somewhat indirect, rejoinder to Boettke (2019, this volume, Chapter 1). Doing Austrian economics is low prestige: Austrian economics does not get published in high-prestige journals and Austrian economists are not employed by top universities. And yet, up until World War II Austrian economics was an important part of the international economics community. The author argues that Austrian economists made several theoretical innovations that could have placed them at the frontier of research in economics, and present a brief counterfactual history of a thriving Austrian economics based on those innovations. However, the actual history of the Austrian School is quite different. A particularly decisive factor that has made Austrian economics a fringe movement was the rejection of formal methods in theory and empirics. The author argues that Austrian economics is basically dying out as a voice in the conversation of modern economists.

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Book part
Publication date: 23 July 2016

Janek Wasserman

Historians of economic thought have begun to reintegrate “un-AustrianAustrians back into discussions of Austrian Economics, yet many scholars have argued that the…

Abstract

Historians of economic thought have begun to reintegrate “un-AustrianAustrians back into discussions of Austrian Economics, yet many scholars have argued that the Austrian School dissolved after emigration, with only Mises and his followers left to carry on the legacy. This chapter argues that a renewed focus on the networks established by the Austrians themselves, before and after emigration, reveals a distinctly different picture of Austrian Economics. Focusing on their shared interest in international trade theory and business cycle theory and their continued contributions to economic methodology, we see the émigré Austrians advancing Austrian ideas while also reconstituting and elaborating new Austrian affiliations. Ultimately, we find ourselves in agreement with Herbert Furth that Austrian Economics is far broader than Hayek, Mises, and their acolytes would have it, and that it is vital to understand and preserve this more diverse tradition by investigating more closely the works of Haberler, Machlup, Morgenstern, and others.

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Research in the History of Economic Thought and Methodology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-960-2

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Book part
Publication date: 17 October 2017

Hartmut Kliemt

Bloomington scholars are critical of the rather wide-spread “Model Platonism” of both Austrian and Chicago economists. Their empirical, B, perspective avoids the more…

Abstract

Bloomington scholars are critical of the rather wide-spread “Model Platonism” of both Austrian and Chicago economists. Their empirical, B, perspective avoids the more extreme views of both Austrian “mindful economics,” A, and Chicago “mindless economics,” C. Yet the B is not a mere convex combination of A and C. It is rather a psychologically grounded empirical evidence-oriented approach that keeps clear of the non-empirical spirit of von Mises’ and Selten’s methodological dualism on one hand and the instrumentalist and behaviorist spirit of much of neo-classical economics on the other hand.

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Book part
Publication date: 28 October 2019

Erwin Dekker and Stefan Kolev

In this chapter it is argued that the future of Austrian economics is best sought in the field of philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE), with a strong and diverse…

Abstract

In this chapter it is argued that the future of Austrian economics is best sought in the field of philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE), with a strong and diverse connection with civil society. The authors demonstrate the limitations inherent in the discipline of economics for Austrian economists, which consist of its narrowness as well as its near-exclusive focus on improving government policies. The authors suggest that the burgeoning field of PPE is a more natural home, and one that provides the great continuity with the broad social philosophical origins of the Austrian School. The chapter emphasizes the comparative strength of Austrian economics in direct relation to the public as well as civil society organizations, compared to the purely academic nature of many other economic schools and fields. But the authors warn against a too narrow ideological or too concentrated financial relationship with a small set of civil society organizations. The chapter illustrates some of the dangers and opportunities through a comparative history vis-à-vis the evolution of ordoliberal political economy in Germany.

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Book part
Publication date: 23 July 2016

Peter J. Boettke, Christopher J. Coyne and Patrick Newman

This chapter provides a comprehensive survey of the contributions of the Austrian school of economics, with specific emphasis on post-WWII developments. We provide a brief…

Abstract

This chapter provides a comprehensive survey of the contributions of the Austrian school of economics, with specific emphasis on post-WWII developments. We provide a brief history and overview of the original theorists of the Austrian school in order to set the stage for the subsequent development of their ideas by Ludwig von Mises and F. A. Hayek. In discussing the main ideas of Mises and Hayek, we focus on how their work provided the foundations for the modern Austrian school, which included Ludwig Lachmann, Murray Rothbard and Israel Kirzner. These scholars contributed to the Austrian revival in the 1960s and 1970s, which, in turn, set the stage for the emergence of the contemporary Austrian school in the 1980s. We review the contemporary development of the Austrian school and, in doing so, discuss the tensions, alternative paths, and the promising future of Austrian economics.

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Research in the History of Economic Thought and Methodology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-960-2

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Book part
Publication date: 28 October 2019

Peter J. Boettke

There are more scholars teaching and actively engaged in research associated with the Austrian School of Economics now than at any other time in its history. However…

Abstract

There are more scholars teaching and actively engaged in research associated with the Austrian School of Economics now than at any other time in its history. However, there is still something seriously wrong within the Austrian School and changes must be made both individually and collectively. In this piece, the author first discusses scientific progress with an emphasis on the individual behavior that is required to contribute to science, and the horizontal relationships that are required for the spread of ideas within a scientific community. Next, the author discusses the example of the Austrian school from 1950 to today in terms of these horizontal relationships within the profession and, in particular, in comparison with other mainline contributors during the same time period. The author then will address the multiplicity of horizontal relationships that might be explored as alternative discourse communities in the contemporary intellectual landscape. Lastly, the author concludes that the Austrian School of Economics must cultivate an explicit awareness of plausible, intrinsically interesting, and creative research agendas, and must therefore regard their work as a productive input into the ongoing research production of others within the broader community of economists and political economists.

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Book part
Publication date: 12 November 2008

Lawrence H. White

Austrian economics today is a living research program, pursued by scholars around the globe, associated with an intellectual lineage that began in Vienna with Carl…

Abstract

Austrian economics today is a living research program, pursued by scholars around the globe, associated with an intellectual lineage that began in Vienna with Carl Menger's 1871 Grundsätze der Volkswirtschaftslehre (Principles of Economics).1 Menger's ideas were soon advanced by his followers Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk and Friedrich von Wieser. In the mid-20th century Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek did the most to extend economic research along Mengerian lines. Some of the Mengerian innovations (marginalism, opportunity cost) have been incorporated into mainstream neoclassical economics, and Mises and Hayek viewed their own research program merely as modern economics.2 But as Israel Kirzner (1994, p. xii) has noted, those involved in “the contemporary post-Misesian revival of Austrian Economics” now appreciate “the distinctiveness of the Austrian tradition” stemming from Menger.3

Details

Explorations in Austrian Economics
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-330-9

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Book part
Publication date: 23 July 2016

Erwin Dekker

In this chapter it is argued that when the Austrian revival takes place in the 1970s and 1980s the image of economics as an analytical science which can be…

Abstract

In this chapter it is argued that when the Austrian revival takes place in the 1970s and 1980s the image of economics as an analytical science which can be methodologically kept clean from value judgments, and the economist as a pure truth-seeker shapes modern Austrian economics at the expense of an idea of a socially involved, embedded scholar with a responsibility toward society which was characteristic of the pre-WWII Austrian school. The neglect of that part of the Austrian heritage is important not only for how we understand the role and responsibility of the social scientist but also because it alters what we consider to be relevant and valid economic knowledge. The chapter demonstrates that insight into economic processes was excluded from what was considered valid economic knowledge and how social relevance of knowledge was no longer a goal in the postwar Austrian School. The chapter identifies alternative currents in the modern Austrian school to this general trend and suggests ways forward to think about the appropriate institutions to promote relevance and the moral conduct of (Austrian) economics.

Details

Research in the History of Economic Thought and Methodology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-960-2

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 10 August 2010

Roger Koppl

The papers collected here were written for the second biennial Wirth conference on Austrian Economics. The Wirth Institute for Austrian and Central European Studies…

Abstract

The papers collected here were written for the second biennial Wirth conference on Austrian Economics. The Wirth Institute for Austrian and Central European Studies sponsored the conference in cooperation with the University of Toronto in Mississauga. The conference was held from 17 to 18 October 2008 in Mississauga. The Wirth Institute has a natural home in Edmonton on the campus of the University of Alberta, which is a leading center for Central European Studies. The fact that the Institute has received support not only from government of Austria, but also from the governments of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia reflects its historically minded recognition of the unique intellectual milieu of the Habsburg Empire. This intellectual milieu lasted beyond the breakup of the empire right through to the Anschluss in 1938. It is this milieu that shaped the Austrian school of economics and helped shape the context for the conference.

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What is so Austrian about Austrian Economics?
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-261-7

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1988

H. Visser

The epithet “Austrian” in “Austrian economics” is applied to the work of economists as far apart in time as Carl Menger, whose Grundsätze der Volkswirthschaftslehre

Abstract

The epithet “Austrian” in “Austrian economics” is applied to the work of economists as far apart in time as Carl Menger, whose Grundsätze der Volkswirthschaftslehre (Principles of Political Economy) first appeared in 1871, and Ludwig Lachmann, Israel Kirzner and Murray Rothbard, writing a century or more later. It would be vain to attempt to define Austrian economics by a set of beliefs, commonly held by its adherents. There is much to be said for following Zuidema (1987), who prefers to speak of “styles” rather than “schools”. This implies that there need be no clear‐cut dividing lines between Austrians and the rest of the economics fraternity and that not all those dubbed “Austrian” are necessarily “typically” Austrian all of the time. There certainly seems to be a style of reasoning that can be seen as specifically Austrian. Some of the components of a “style” mentioned by Zuidema are:

Details

Journal of Economic Studies, vol. 15 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3585

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