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

Developments in Major Fields of Economics

Edited by Gilbert Faccarello and Heinz D. Kurz

Volume III contains entries on the development of major fields in economics from the inception of systematic analysis until modern times. The reader is provided with succinct summary accounts of the main problems, the methods used to address them and the results obtained across time. The emphasis is on both the continuity and the major changes that have occurred in the economic analysis of problematic issues such as economic growth, income distribution, employment, inflation, business cycles and financial instability. 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 7: Corporatism

Sergio Noto


Corporatism is probably the most common system of economic organisation in both the Eastern and Western worlds. As in the case of, for example, mercantilism, we should not look for the foundations of corporatism in the writings of eminent thinkers. There are certainly some remarkable theories that offer a theoretical basis, but in reality corporatism is indubitably based for the most part on historical facts. It has a history of more than 2000 years and this thus prevents us from defining it simply as being somewhere in between capitalism and socialism or as the economic doctrine of some authoritarian regimes. If we consider how corporatism has taken shape over the years, historical experience is more relevant than any theoretical foundations. During the course of its history, scholars of economics have spoken of several instances of corporatism, largely different and often labelled with different names. Nevertheless, these come from the same origin and must all be considered as true corporatism. Just as we accept that there are several varieties of capitalism, we must also acknowledge that corporatism is a multi-faceted phenomenon comprising many features. Also we must realise that it is necessary to connect all the different aspects and characteristics that have shaped the historical process behind corporatism in order to understand its theoretical structure.

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