Welcome to the Eli F. Heckscher lecture 26 September at 17.15-18.45!
What does capitalism really mean? What is the role of profits and capital in economic development?
Mary O’Sullivan, Professor of Economic History and Director of the Department of History, Economics and Society at University of Geneva, is this year’s keynote speaker. She has also been active at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and at INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France).
Why is it that capitalism is a concept that seems as capricious and elusive as the world it evokes? O’Sullivan argues that capital has been written out of the history of economic life—with devastating effect for any serious consideration of the role and rewards of capital in contemporary and past societies. She therefore makes a proposal for a more historical approach to guiding economic thinking about capital, and what it means for capitalism, in a direction that might prove more satisfying to the intelligent woman. Her latest article, “The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Capitalism”, Enterprise & Society (December 2018), shares its title with this year’s Heckscher lecture, and is an ironic nod to The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism, published in 1928 by George Bernard Shaw.
O’Sullivan is the author of several books as well as numerous journal articles. In her most recent bookDividends of Development. Securities Markets in the History of U.S. Capitalism, 1866-1922 (2016), she explains the development of the US securities markets from the Civil War through World War I. It shows how transformation occurred through a process that was volatile, time-consuming, unscripted by powerful actors, and driven above all, by the dramatic and unstable character of the nation’s economic development. Her research fields are the history of capital, industries and businesses, and the comparative history of economic development, with a particular focus on the history of enterprises, industries, and financial institutions.
Date: Thursday 26 September
Place: Stockholm School of Economics, Sveavägen 65, Stockholm
No registration required.