Journal of Economic Perspectives: Vol. 7 No. 3 (Summer 1993)


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Was Schumpeter Right after All?

Article Citation

Heilbroner, Robert. 1993. "Was Schumpeter Right after All?" Journal of Economic Perspectives, 7(3): 87-96.

DOI: 10.1257/jep.7.3.87


In Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy (1947) Schumpeter asks "Can capitalism survive?" He answers: "No. I do not think it can." In an essay I wrote in 1981 entitled "Was Schumpeter Right?" I began with the words: "No. I do not think he was." Now, over a decade later, I wish to reconsider the question of whether Schumpeter was right, from a somewhat different point of view. To the question "Was Schumpeter Right?" I now give two answers. Was he right in his analysis of the prospects for capitalism? No, I still do not think he was. But was he right in his approach to the question of economic inquiry itself, an approach that recognized the presence of Vision as the precursor to Analysis? Yes, there I believe that he was not only right, but even more right than he himself realized

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Heilbroner, Robert (New School for Social Research)

JEL Classifications

B31: History of Thought: Individuals
B41: Economic Methodology


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