Economic Thinkers

Written by Staff

February 28, 2020

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Economic Thinkers


  • A. R. J. Turgot (1727-1781) French author of Reflections 1766, established marginal utility analysis, physiocrat.
  • Adam Smith (1723-1790) Scottish author of The Wealth of Nations 1776, developed free trade theory and an appreciation for the division of labor, set back marginal utility analysis with cost of production theory of value, classical.
  • Jean Baptiste Say (1767-1832) French author of Treatise on Political Economy 1803,
  • David Ricardo (1772-1823) English author of Principles of Political Economy 1817, the originator of the law of comparative advantage, rent theory influenced George, wage theory influenced Marx, classical.
  • Karl Marx (1818-1883) German transplant to England, newspaper writer and author of The Communist Manifesto 1848 and Das Kapital 1867, arguing for collective ownership, determinist theory of history and the labor theory of value, communist.
  • Carl Menger (1805-1900) Austrian author of The Principles of Economics 1871, re-establishing marginal utility analysis (the marginal revolution), founder of the Austrian School.
  • Henry George (1839-1897) American author of Progress and Poverty 1879, based on Ricardo�s theory of rent, an advocate of a single tax on land, advocate of free trade.
  • John Bates Clark (1847-1938) American author of Distribution of Wealth 1899, establishing the marginal productivity theory of income distribution, neo-classicial/institutionalist.
  • EugenBohm-Bawerk (1851-1914) Austrian author of Capital and Interest 1884 andKarl Marx and the Close of His System 1896, emphasizing �roundabout production� and disputing the labor theory of value, Austrian.
  • Thorstein Veblen (1858-1920) American author of The Theory of the Leisure Class 1899, coined the term �conspicuous consumption� and ridiculed the law of diminishing marginal utility, institutionalist.
  • Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) Austrian transplant to U.S., author of The Theory of Money and Credit 1912 and Human Action 1949, applied marginal utility analysis to money developing a new theory of business cycles, and with Hayek disputed the possibility of socialist planning, Austrian.
  • John Maynard Keynes (1885-1946) English Lord, author of The General Theory 1936, establishing a �macro� economics and an underconsumptionist theory of the business cycle, the most influential economist of the 20th century, Keynesian.
  • Frederich A. von Hayek (1886-1989) Austrian transplant to U.S., devotee of Mises, author of The Road to Serfdom 1944 and The Fatal Conceit 1989, with Mises disputed the possibility of socialist planning, Nobel Prize 1974, Austrian.
  • Joseph Schumpeter (1883-1950) Austrian transplant to U.S., author of Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy 1942 and History of Economic Analysis 1954, originated term �creative destruction� to describe capitalism, �methodologically tolerant� Austrian.
  • Milton Friedman (1912�2006 ) American author of Capitalism and Freedom 1962,� Free to Choose 1980, emphasized the connection between economic and political freedom, and the importance of the money supply in the macroeconomy, Nobel Prize 1976, monetarist.
  • Paul Samuelson (1915- ) American Keynesian: �Keynes� Paul,� author of the best selling and first Keynesian text, Economics 1949, Nobel Prize 1970, Keynesian.
  • John Kenneth Galbraith (1908- ) American author of The Affluent Society 1957 and The New Industrial State 1973, disputed the value of advertising and of competition among oligopolists, follower of Veblen, institutionalist.
  • James Buchanan (1919- ) American author of The Calculus of Constent 1962, founder of� Public Choice Economic theory applying self-interest motivations to all including government officials, Nobel Prize 1986, Public Choicer.
  • Robert Lucas (1940- ) American influenced by Milton Friedman at University of Chicago, originator of rational expectations theory, Nobel Prize 1994, Monetarist/Rational Expectations.

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