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The Political Business Cycle At Sixty: Towards A Neo-Kaleckian Understanding Of Political Economy


  • Jan-Peter OLTERS



Sixty years ago, Kalecki (1943) introduced the notion of a political business cycle to the economics discipline, emphasising that individual economic interest affected not only that person's political behaviour but also overall economic growth. Since then, an extensive and remarkably heterogeneous literature has developed that is unified in its attempt to encourage an interdisciplinary analysis of economic problems and distributive questions and to integrate the non-market branch of political economy with the rest of the discipline. By critically surveying the insights that economists have won since, this article attempts to place into a broader context those recent innovations in politico-economic research that have picked up on Kalecki's understanding of personal conflict as the key explanation for political behaviour and economic growth-foreshadowing the development of a positively formulated economic theory of politics that is able to fully incorporate the decision-making processes of voters, parties, and governments into those of consumers and firms

Suggested Citation

  • Jan-Peter OLTERS, 2004. "The Political Business Cycle At Sixty: Towards A Neo-Kaleckian Understanding Of Political Economy," Cahiers d’économie politique / Papers in Political Economy, L'Harmattan, issue 46, pages 91-130.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpo:journl:y:2004:i:46:p:91-130

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    Cited by:

    1. Jan-Peter Olters & Daniel Leigh, 2006. "Natural-Resource Depletion, Habit Formation, and Sustainable Fiscal Policy; Lessons from Gabon," IMF Working Papers 06/193, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Nicoleta Jula & Nicolae-Marius Jula, 2013. "Econometric Evidences of Political Business Cycles in Romania during the socialist regime and after," Computational Methods in Social Sciences (CMSS), "Nicolae Titulescu" University of Bucharest, Faculty of Economic Sciences, vol. 1(1), pages 64-69, Ianuary.
    3. Rodrigo Octávio Orair & Raphael Rocha Gouvêa & Ésio Moreira Leal, 2014. "Political Electoral Cycles and Public Investments in Brasil," Discussion Papers 1999a, Instituto de Pesquisa Econômica Aplicada - IPEA.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • B22 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Macroeconomics
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination


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