Abram Bergson: The Life of a Comparativist1,2
AbstractAbram Bergson is best known for his monumental work of creating the methodology and estimating Soviet GNP, its structure and its rate of growth. This work culminated but did not end with his 1961 Volume on The Real National Income of Soviet Russia Since 1928. The present paper is devoted to another major effort of Bergson, the evaluation of the comparative efficiency of the socialist system, relative to market, capitalist systems. Starting from theoretical considerations of welfare economics, Bergson defined the two models and their respective objective functions. Rejecting the possibility of reaching a judgment on the basis of theory alone, Bergson concluded that the real test of the comparison is in the implementation of the two systems on the ground. This paper follows the evolution of Bergson's work and thinking on this subject over the years, with the accumulation of theoretical and methodological considerations and of empirical evidence. It discovers great care, objective judgments, as well as deep hesitations before making such judgments. The final judgment was of course in the right direction, but it did not lead him to foresee the demise of the socialist system. Bergson titled his autobiographical notes (1991) ‘Recollections and Reflections of a Comparativist’, and a very careful comparativist he indeed was. Comparative Economic Studies (2005) 47, 240–258. doi:10.1057/palgrave.ces.8100109
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Palgrave Macmillan in its journal Comparative Economic Studies.
Volume (Year): 47 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.palgrave-journals.com/
Postal: Palgrave Macmillan Journals, Subscription Department, Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG21 6XS, UK
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Ofer, Gur, 2010. "Twenty Years Later and the Socialist Heritage is still Kicking: the Case of Russia," Working Paper Series, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) wp2010-59, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Elizabeth Gale).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.