At the United Nations

  • Jan Toporowski
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Economic Thought book series (PHET)


In Washington, Lange combined his position of Polish Ambassador to the United States with that of the official Polish delegate to the United Nations where he was active in developing the work and the staff of the international organisation. On 7 November 1946, David Owen, who had just been appointed to the position of Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, wrote to Edward Phelan, the Acting Director of the International Labour Organization. ‘I have been approached by the Polish government with the suggestion that Dr. Michael Kalecki, now a member of staff of the ILO, should be considered as candidate for a senior post in the Department of Economic Affairs. I have known Dr. Kalecki for some time and I have a high respect for his qualities as an economic theoretician. I am, for this reason, prepared to consider him for a senior post as an economic adviser somewhat detached from general administration and political work of my Department.’ Owen had seen Kalecki that day and told him that ‘I could not enter into any formal discussion with him concerning his candidature before you [i.e., the ILO] had informed me that you were prepared to release him. If you are prepared to consider releasing Dr. Kalecki, I should be happy to meet you in any way with regard to the date of his release.’ In the event, the ILO was co-operative. With Adela, Kalecki moved to New York, and, on 30 December 1946, he commenced work as Assistant Director of the Economic Stability and Development Division in the Department of Economic Affairs of the UN Secretariat.

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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Toporowski
    • 1
  1. 1.Economics DepartmentSOAS University of LondonLondonUK

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