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Schumpeter 1911: Farsighted Visions on Economic Development


  • Markus C. Becker

    (University of Southern Denmark)

  • Thorbj¯rn Knudsen

    (University of Southern Denmark)


This paper presents to the English-speaking reader a sample of material contained only in Schumpeter's first German edition (1911) of "Theorie der wirtschaftlichen Entwicklung", material subsequently omitted from later German editions and from the English translation. The newly-translated material, presented here for the first time in English, comprises a substantial part of the second chapter, only available in a completely rewritten version, and fully half of the famous seventh chapter, which has not been previously available at all in English. This material merits attention today because it contains remarkable and farsighted visions on economic theory that may inspire current efforts to devise models of economic and social evolution. In order to better appreciate the original text, we briefly introduce the "background" to "Theorie" and its revisions, briefly describing the social and intellectual environment of the time. We then discuss how the entrepreneur evolved over the three editions of "Theorie" (from 1911 to 1934) in view of the shift in Schumpeter's personal and intellectual life and outline the most important implications raised by the first German edition of 1911. Finally, we use Schumpeter's own statements to settle the obstinate confusion on the publication year of "Theorie" in favour of the year 1911. Copyright 2002 The American Journal of Economics and Sociology.

Suggested Citation

  • Markus C. Becker & Thorbj¯rn Knudsen, 2002. "Schumpeter 1911: Farsighted Visions on Economic Development," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(2), pages 387-403, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:61:y:2002:i:2:p:387-403

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    Cited by:

    1. Mishra Chandra S & Zachary Ramona K., 2011. "Revisiting, Reexamining and Reinterpreting Schumpeter's Original Theory of Entrepreneurship," Entrepreneurship Research Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 1-8, January.
    2. Janne Kurtakko, 2014. "Schumpeter's Challenge to Economists: History, Theory, and Statistics as Key Competencies and Sociology as a Vision for the Future," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 73(1), pages 32-57, January.
    3. Christian Schubert, 2009. "Welfare Creation and Destruction in a Schumpeterian World," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2009-14, Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography.
    4. Heinz Kurz, 2012. "Schumpeter’s new combinations," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 22(5), pages 871-899, November.
    5. Anthony Endres & Christine Woods, 2010. "Schumpeter’s ‘conduct model of the dynamic entrepreneur’: scope and distinctiveness," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 583-607, August.
    6. Mário Graça Moura, 2017. "Schumpeter and the meanings of rationality," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 115-138, January.
    7. Markus Becker & Thorbjørn Knudsen & Richard Swedberg, 2012. "Schumpeter’s Theory of Economic Development: 100 years of development," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 22(5), pages 917-933, November.
    8. Michaelides, Panayotis G. & Milios, John G., 2005. "The Influence of the German Historical School on Schumpeter," MPRA Paper 74471, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. International Monetary Fund, 2007. "Italy; Selected Issues," IMF Staff Country Reports 07/65, International Monetary Fund.
    10. Markus C. Becker & Thorbjørn Knudsen, 2017. "Heterogeneity of habits as a foundation for Schumpeterian economic policy," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 43-62, January.

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