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Economic Theory and Policy in Dictatorship and Democracy: Spain 1939-1996


  • Juan Zabalza


The role played by economists and thus economic theory in implementing the Spanish economic policy during the second half of the 20th century is the main topic analysed in this article. Political framework indeed is crucial for understanding the relationships between Spanish economists and economic policy during the period. The authoritarian regime imposed by victorious General Franco did not leave room to economic rationality as he entrusted economic policy to engineers politically committed with the dictatorship. Later on, once these policies proved to be ruinous, a group of technocrats assumed the responsibility for economic policy on the basis of more rational principles although political goals prevailed on economic ones. The advent of democracy in the mid-1970s, however, meant the contribution of economists to both the transformation of the economic institutions and the implementation of the economic policy that took place during a period of economic turbulences.

Suggested Citation

  • Juan Zabalza, 2013. "Economic Theory and Policy in Dictatorship and Democracy: Spain 1939-1996," HISTORY OF ECONOMIC THOUGHT AND POLICY, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2013(1), pages 53-72.
  • Handle: RePEc:fan:spespe:v:html10.3280/spe2013-001004

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    JEL classification:

    • A11 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Role of Economics; Role of Economists
    • B20 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - General
    • P41 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Planning, Coordination, and Reform


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