• Cambridge Society For Economic Pluralism

Economic History for Economists: Why? (Nicholas Crafts)



About this event

‘The imperfect lessons that we can draw from history… are of inestimable, irreplaceable value, and no controlled experiment will ever be able to equal them. – Thomas Piketty 2014 The recent financial crisis has given rise to a fierce debate over the training that economics students receive, with many key figures arguing that a lack of knowledge of economic history contributing to the mistakes that were made. Andrew Haldane, Chief Economist at the Bank of England, said that, “financial history should have caused us to take credit cycles seriously,” and that it’s disappearance from the curriculum caused complacency. As one of the only economics degrees with a compulsory economic history paper remaining, what does it offer us? How might it help us prevent future crises? And why should we defend it? Professor Nicholas Crafts is Professor of Economics and Economic History at the University of Warwick. His research interests are the Industrial Revolution, British economic decline and the analysis of growth rates. His book ‘British Economic Growth During the Industrial Revolution’, and his work with Professor Charles Harley, were hugely influential in the field of economic history, and remain a staple of the Cambridge curriculum today. This lecture was recorded on Monday 30th November at the Mill Lane Lecture site, University of Cambridge.


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