Entrepreneurship, knowledge and employment

Evolution of Hungarian Economic Thought from the Early Times till the End of Socialism

Horvath Julius, Central European University

In this paper we present the sketch of overall history of Hungarian economic thought. We divide our paper into different time period. In the first one we discuss the period before 1848, where the birth of Hungarian economic thought emerges. We discuss authors as Jesuit Martin Szentiványi (1633-1705), Cameralists from the University of Tyrnavae (Trnava, Nagyszombat), pamphleteers as Tessedik Szamuel, (1742-1820), and original thinkers as Gregorius Berzeviczy (1763-1822), and others. Period of National Romanticism (second half of the XIX century till the beginning of the World War One) follows with erudite professors as Kautz Gyula (1829-1909), Földes Béla (1848-1945), among others. Period after 1918 is characterized by the break-up of the Monarchy and creation of national states. In this period Hungarian economic thought is dominated by high quality university professors Ákos Navrátil (1875-1952), and Farkas Heller (1877-1952). We also discuss interesting work of Hantos Elemér (1880-1942). This period and also the period after 1948 socialist coup d’etat is characterized by large number of high quality Hungarian economic thinkers who move to the West. Immigrants in the West with creative spirit against tyranny and narrow-mindedness in their homeland, and with hope that in the foreign country they will find a higher realization of what is their own. Here one can mention Tibor Scitovsky (1910-2002), Janos Kornai (1928-), Janos von Neumann (1903-1957), Lord Thomas Balogh (1905-1985), Lord Nicholas Káldor (1908-1986), Lord Peter Bauer, (1915-2002), Béla Balassa (1928-1991), Baron Alexandre Lámfalussy (1929-2015), Karl Polányi (1891-1976), and others. The last section discontinuity between the pre-1945 past and the newly established ‘Marxist-Leninist’ economics is presented. We conclude with the socialist period, where we present theoretician of socialist economies Janos Kornai (1928-). In addition we present the work of some domestic reformers of economic policies.


Keywords: Hungarian economic thought,

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