F. A. Hayek as an Ordo-Liberal
Hamburg Institute of International Economics Research Paper 5-1
28 Pages Posted: 20 Jan 2017
Date Written: August 10, 2010
Friedrich August von Hayek (1899-1992) was among the most significant liberal thinkers of the past century. The evolution of his research agenda has attracted extensive attention, a common "split" being Hayek I (the business cycle theorist) and Hayek II (the social philosopher). The present paper attempts to show that this two-fold division is inadequate, or at least incomplete. Instead, a three-fold division is suggested: here, Hayek I would again be the business cycle theorist, but Hayek II is seen as an ordoliberal social philosopher different from Hayek III, the evolutionist social philosopher. Regarding the timespan of the latter two phases, the paper contends that the ordoliberal Hayek II can be identified especially in the 1930s and 1940s (the time of "The Road to Serfdom" and the founding of the Mont Pèlerin Society), whereas the evolutionist phase starts in the 1950s and characterizes especially his late works in the 1970s and 1980s. In substantive terms, the key distinction between the ordoliberal Hayek II and the evolutionist Hayek III is the designability of the rules constituting the order of economy and society.
Keywords: F.A. Hayek, Walter Eucken, Wilhelm Röpke, Austrian School, Freiburg School, Mont Pèlerin Society, Ordoliberalism, Neoliberalism
JEL Classification: B25, B31, H10, N44, P16
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation