Walter Eucken's role in the early history of the Mont Pèlerin Society
AbstractIn the history of economic thought Walter Eucken is mostly known for his impact in establishing the Social Market Economy in post-war Germany. Even though there is a growing interest in his ideas especially from an Austrian and a Constitutional Economics perspective, his influence on the discussions within neoliberalism and, more specifically, his impact in the course of the foundation of the Mont Pèlerin Society (MPS) are not yet widely considered. In this paper we attempt to show that Eucken was very influential in the formation of the MPS and that German ordoliberalism had a significant imprint on the early history of the society. It is primarily Eucken's correspondence with F. A. Hayek and Wilhelm Röpke in this context which we present and analyze, complementing it with some hypotheses about early influences between Eucken and Hayek in terms of methodology and epistemology. Subsequently we show, by regarding the first MPS meetings between 1947 and 1949 (general and organizational), that there was - even at this early stage in the development of the MPS - a widening gap between a Continental European and an Anglo-Saxon understanding of neoliberalism, despite the personal friendships and high collegial respect especially between Eucken, Hayek and Röpke; Ludwig von Mises playing a special role in this setting. We illustrate this development also by discussing personal memories of Leonhard Miksch, a student of Eucken and a participant of the MPS meeting in 1949, recorded in his so far unpublished diary. --
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Walter Eucken Institut e.V. in its series Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics with number 14/02.
Date of creation: 2014
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Postal: Goethestrasse 10, D-79100 Freiburg im Breisgau
Web page: http://www.walter-eucken-institut.de/
More information through EDIRC
Neoliberalism; Mont Pèlerin Society; Ordoliberalism; History of Economic Thought; Political and Economic Order; Role of Economists;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- A11 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Role of Economics; Role of Economists
- B25 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary; Austrian
- B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals
- B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
- H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2014-02-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2014-02-02 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
- NEP-HPE-2014-02-02 (History & Philosophy of Economics)
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