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Who's Who and What's What at the LSE, Then and Now? A Review Essay of The Palgrave Companion to LSE Economics

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This valuable discussion of LSE economics runs from the School’s inception in 1895 to the present. I review the whole, including where relevant, observations and criticisms based on personal knowledge from the my time as a graduate student, then a staff member of the LSE, from 1953 to 1963. Part I contains excellent essays on what the editor says are “…the contributions made by a centre [LSE in this case] where these contributions are considered to be especially important…†. These cover econometrics, economic history, accounting, business history, social policy, and the LSE’s house journal Economica. The notable absence is economic theory despite the LSE having had notable theorists throughout its entire history. For an early example, in the 1930s the School had Lionel Robbins, Friedrich Hayek, John Hicks, R. D. G. Allen, James Meade, Ronald Coase, Abba Lerner, and Nicky Kaldor. Also absent is an essay on methodology in spite of the LSE having had Carl Popper, Irme Lakatos and Joseph Agassi, all of whom had a major influence on economics at the LSE and worldwide. Part II presents essays on 29 economists who had been or still are on the School’s staff. It is organised in chronological order of birth dates, from 1861 for Canaan to 1948 for Pissarides. The coverage is quite comprehensive, although a few important staff members are omitted. The essays are excellent and mostly honour the important work of these staff members. The one exception is James Forder’s rather critical essay on Bill Phillips, on which I offer some criticisms.

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  • Richard G. Lipsey, 2020. "Who's Who and What's What at the LSE, Then and Now? A Review Essay of The Palgrave Companion to LSE Economics," Discussion Papers dp20-05, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University.
  • Handle: RePEc:sfu:sfudps:dp20-05
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    LSE; Review Essay;

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