Entrepreneurship, knowledge and employment

The nature and the consequences of economic sanctions in the history of economic thought

Nureev Rustem Nureev, Member of ESHET
Busygin Evgeny, HSE

Economic sanctions have a long history and were first applied in ancient Greece. In Europe in the Middle Ages, the application of sanctions measures was more local and short-term. In the nineteenth century, the main instrument of economic sanctions was the "silent blockade" of seaports (Davis L., 2003). In the period from 1827 to the beginning of the First World War, 21 silent blockades were organized, and from 1910 to 2000 the number of sanctions imposed increased to 174 cases, with total costs exceeding 112 billion dollars (Hufbauer et al, 2007). Since 1910, there has been a steady increase in publications, including the study of the policy of sanctions. The greatest interest among economists was given to this topic in the 2000s. The share of articles and books including the study of economic sanctions in the total volume of books and articles on economics available in the Google Scholar database was 10.1% for 2016-2017. Two main periods can be distinguished when a fundamentally different approach to the analysis of economic sanctions was applied: from 1925 to 1960 and from 1961 to the present. Before World War II, the analysis of economic sanctions was widely used in the context of international law and institutional economics: A.E. Taylor (1925), A. Bertram (1931), J. Commons (1932), A Kun (1935), J. Williams (1936), V. Zaler (1936), W. Welk (1937), and S. Fenwick (1938), A. Miller (1959) etc. This concept, initially considered within the framework of the institutional economy at the microlevel (Commons, J. R., 1931), was moved to the macro level and became a tool for the analysis of intercountry relations after 1961: Y. Galtung (1967), M. Dauodi (1984), D. Dashti-Gibson (1997), D. Baldwin and R. Pap (1998), R. Hart (2000), G. Hafbauer (2007), Dresner (2011) etc. One of the key factors on which the success of the sanctions is dependent is the amount of costs that the parties bear - the country that imposed sanctions, and the country against which they are direct


Keywords: economic sanctions, cost-benefit analysis, anti-Russian sanctions

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