Entrepreneurship, knowledge and employment

N. Kaldor’s Social Vision

Kimura Yuichi, Nihon University, College of Commerce

An exemplary economist and Labour Party policy advisor, Nicholas Kaldor’s (1908–1986) theories, policies, and structures have been well investigated in representative researches written by F. Targetti, A. P. Thirlwall, S. Turner, and J. E. King. However, few studies have specifically examined his social vision. This study sheds new light on Kaldor’s social views by analysing and contrasting his economic policy contributions with those of liberal economists including Friedman and Robbins. Given that Kaldor’s famous models were built on the conditions of “disparity in income between capitalists and workers” or “distribution of profits and wages,” we analyze Kaldor’s policy considerations from the following perspectives: (1) his roles as tax specialist and economic advisor to the Labour Party; (2) his time spent as a development economist; (3) his opposition to the United Kingdom’s entry into the European Community; (4) his dissent against Monetarism; and (5) his criticism of Thatcher’s economic policies. We conclude that Kaldor was a social reformer based on the following. First, Kaldor remained critical of “liberalism” or “neo liberalism,” which leads to significant income disparity between capitalists and workers, and suggested controlling “dynamic and unstable capitalism” through intelligence and reason. Second, Kaldor defended the labour class in the U.K. by envisioning policies to improve the standard of living of labour at the expense of the rich. Third, similar to Keynes’ euthanasia of the rentier, Kaldor believed in the fall of the wealthy class through capital, expenditure, and selective employment tax reforms.


Keywords: Kaldor, Social Vision

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