Handbook on the History of Economic Analysis Volume I
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Handbook on the History of Economic Analysis Volume I

Great Economists Since Petty and Boisguilbert

Edited by Gilbert Faccarello and Heinz D. Kurz

Volume I contains original biographical profiles of many of the most important and influential economists from the seventeenth century to the present day. These inform the reader about their lives, works and impact on the further development of the discipline. The emphasis is on their lasting contributions to our understanding of the complex system known as the economy. The entries also shed light on the means and ways in which the functioning of this system can be improved and its dysfunction reduced. Each Handbook can be read individually and acts as a self-contained volume in its own right. It can be purchased separately or as part of a three-volume set.
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Chapter 105: Maurice Allais (1911–2010)

Alain Béraud


Maurice Allais was born in Paris on 31 May 1911 and died in Saint-Cloud on 9 October 2010. He was admitted to the École Polytechnique in 1931, studied also at the École des Mines from 1934 to 1936 and then started to work in Nantes as an engineer. But since his time as a student, his interests had changed. His first interests were in theoretical physics – he was to come back to this subject at the end of his life – but he turned to economics. In 30 months, from January 1941 to July 1943, he wrote his Traité d’économie pure. This work was intended to be the first of eight volumes, a series entitled À la recherche d’une discipline économique, supposedly to deal successively with pure economics, real economy and the economy of the future. He gave up his ambitious project but it is possible to find in Économie et intérêt, published in 1947, part of the material he had prepared for his magnum opus, that is, the areas which dealt with interest, money and disequilibria affecting the real economy. In 1946 Allais became a senior research fellow at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. He also lectured at the Paris École des Mines (1944–88), at the Institut de Statistiques of the University of Paris (1947–68) and at the University of Paris X Nanterre (1970–85). He was awarded the 1988 Sveriges Riksbank’s Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for his contribution...

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