Contemporary economic history (2012/2013)

Codice insegnamento
Sergio Noto, Andrea Caracausi
Sergio Noto
Settore disciplinare
Lingua di erogazione
secondo semestre dal 18-feb-2013 al 24-mag-2013.

Orario lezioni

Obiettivi formativi

Contemporary Economic History 2012 -2013: The Ghost of Capitalism

This year’s course aims to focus on those historical facts and theories which attest a progressive decline of institutions and economic policies inspired by the traditional sight of capitalism both as competitive market ruled by law and as the most efficient mean to promote collective interests.
At this purpose the course is shaped on two main approaches: 1. the development of economic theory since the death of John Maynard Keynes until Paul Krugman’s International Economics; 2. economic development in leading countries since the post-war era to 2010. This double approach rests on the idea that economic theories and economic facts are not separable and that there is no critical understanding of economic processes without historical comparison. Students are expected to attend and participate in lectures.
The course is coordinated by Sergio Noto, who will lecture 42 hours (7 ECTS). Remaining ECTS (12 hours) will be taught by Andrea Caracausi.


First Part:
Economic Development in USA, England, France, Germany, Soviet Union, Japan, China and India
Main Capital theories
Schumpeter’s theory and the end of Capitalism
Corporatism and Neo-corporatism in Europe and the Americas
The role of European Institutions and the free market
Financial and monetary issues between 1970 and 2007
The case of Italy. Extraordinary or paradigmatic?
The Scandinavian countries model
Growth factors and managed economy
Trade Unions, unemployment and salaries
Privatization and liberalization processes in Europe and Asia
Research, Investments and Profit in european companies

Second Part:
Contemporary economic development in various areas of the world (US, South-Eastern Asia, Latin America and Continental Europe). In particular, it will be discussed how different types of capitalism affected the firms, the technological innovation and the financial system in a context of growing globalization.

Modalità d'esame

Examination will be both written and oral.

Textbooks Information (First Part)
Daran Acemoglu - James A. Robinson, Why Nations fail. The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty, Crown Publishers.
D. Cohen, The Prosperity of Vice: A Worried View of Economics, MIT Press 2012., New York, 2012.
Barry C. Lynn, Cornered. The New Monopoly Capitalism and the Economics of Destruction, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken NJ, 2010.
John Mackey - Raj Sisodia, Liberating the Heroic spirit of conscious capitalism, Harvard Business Review Press, Boston, 2013.
Jeff Madrick, Age of Greed, The Triumph of Finance and the Decline of America. 1970 to present, Alfred A. Knopf, New York 2011.
Deirdre McCloskey, The Bourgeois Virtues: Ethics for an Age of Commerce, University of Chicago Press, Chicago 2007.
Philippe Schmitter, Democratic Theory and Neocorporatist Practice, «Social Research», vol. 50, n.4 (winter 1983), pp. 885-928.
Wolfgang Streeck, How to study Contemporary Capitalism?, «European Journal of Sociology», n. 53, 1-2012, pp. 1-28.
Luigi Zingales, A Capitalism for the People. Recapturing the lost genius of American Prosperity, Basic Books, New York, 2012.

Students who are attested to have attended at least 80% of the classes:
notes and slides from the course and 3 books/papers by choice from the list below.

No attending students: Take contact with Course Coordinator (

Second Part:
Reading for non-attending students only:
North, Douglass C. - Wallis, John Joseph - Weingast, Barry R.. Violence and Social Orders: a Conceptual Framework for Interpreting Recorded Human History, New York, NY Cambridge university press, 2009.
Baumol, William J - Litan, Robert E. - Schramm, Carl J. Good Capitalism, Bad Capitalism, and the Economics of Growth and Prosperity, New Haven Yale university press, 2007.
Amatori, Franco, Chandler, Alfred D, Hikino, Takashi. Big Business and the Wealth of Nations Cambridge Cambridge university press, 1997.

NB Course discussions and essential readings will be indicated to attending students during the course.