History of Economic Policy and the Theory of Uneven Development

Professor Erik S. Reinert

The course gives an overview of economic and development policies that have made rich countries rich, while at the same time introducing the elements of a theory of uneven economic development. The course discusses policies from the Renaissance, mercantilism and cameralism of continental Europe, and the successful policies of development and industrialization from the rise of the USA, Germany and Japan to the success of Ireland and Finland in the late 20th century. Special attention is given to policy failures: why certain economic policies failed in certain contexts? The policies are discussed against the backdrop of the development of economic theory.

Alexander Hamilton, Report on the Subject of Manufacturers, 1791/2001, in Alexander Hamilton, Writings, Literary Classics of the United States, New York.
Friedrich List, Introduction to The National System of Political Economy.
Erik S. Reinert, How Rich Nations got Rich. Essays in the History of Economic Policy. Working paper Nr. 1, 2004, SUM - Centre for development and the Environment, University of Oslo. Downloadable on

Credits: 4
Grade: Yes
Mandatory: Yes