The International Context

  • Benny CarlsonEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Economic History book series (PEHS)


The ambition in this chapter is to summarize debates and events in the 1920s and 1930s related to economic planning in Great Britain and the United States. The British case was complex; planning was “a word that was on everyone’s lips and yet fractured by a multitude of interpretations and meanings”. Planning ambitions in the US made an imprint around the world when Franklin Roosevelt in the spring of 1933 launched his New Deal. In both countries, the ideas of detailed planning was more or less eclipsed by John Maynard Keynes’ “middle way” at the end of the 1930s. Furthermore, the so-called socialist calculation debate, which had been unfolding in German language on the European Continent in the 1920s, triggered by Ludwig von Mises, expanded into English language contributions in the 1930s. Friedrich von Hayek was probably the most outspoken economist against economic planning. He was challenged by E. F. M. Durbin, one of his colleagues at the London School of Economics.


Economic planning Great Britain United States Socialist calculation debate 


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Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lund UniversityLundSweden

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