Monetary Unions

Benjamin J. Cohen, University of California at Santa Barbara Monetary tradition has long assumed that, in principle, each sovereign state issues and manages its own exclusive currency. In practice, however, there have always been exceptions — countries that elected to join together in a monetary union of some kind. Not all monetary unions have stood […]

Military Spending Patterns in History

Jari Eloranta, Appalachian State University Introduction Determining adequate levels of military spending and sustaining the burden of conflicts have been among key fiscal problems in history. Ancient societies were usually less complicated in terms of the administrative, fiscal, technological, and material demands of warfare. The most pressing problem was frequently the adequate maintenance of supply […]

Urban Mass Transit In The United States

Zachary M. Schrag, Columbia University The term “urban mass transit” generally refers to scheduled intra-city service on a fixed route in shared vehicles. Even this definition embraces horse-drawn omnibuses and streetcars, cable cars, electric streetcars and trolley coaches, gasoline and diesel buses, underground and above-ground rail rapid transit, ferries, and some commuter rail service. In […]

William Marshall

David R. Stead, University of York William Marshall (1745-1818) was one of the two leading writers on eighteenth century English agriculture, the other and far better known being his great rival Arthur Young. The younger son of William and Alice, yeoman farmers in Sinnington, in the North Riding of Yorkshire, Marshall spent the first fourteen […]

The Marshall Plan, 1948-1951

Albrecht Ritschl, Humboldt Universitaet – Berlin Between 1948 and 1951, the United States poured financial aiding totaling $13 billion (about $100 billion at 2003 prices) into the economies of Western Europe. Officially termed the European Recovery Program (ERP), the Marshall Plan was approved by Congress in the Economic Cooperation Act of April 1948. After a […]

Thomas Robert Malthus

David R. Stead, University of York The Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) is famous for his pessimistic prediction that humankind would struggle to feed itself. Born in Wotton, Surrey, Robert Malthus (he preferred his second name) was the sixth child of Daniel and Henrietta, members of the English country gentry. After graduating from Jesus College, […]

Economic History of Malaysia

John H. Drabble, University of Sydney, Australia General Background The Federation of Malaysia (see map), formed in 1963, originally consisted of Malaya, Singapore, Sarawak and Sabah. Due to internal political tensions Singapore was obliged to leave in 1965. Malaya is now known as Peninsular Malaysia, and the two other territories on the island of Borneo […]

The Law of One Price

Karl Gunnar Persson, University of Copenhagen Definitions and Explanation of the Law of One Price The concept “Law of One Price” relates to the impact of market arbitrage and trade on the prices of identical commodities that are exchanged in two or more markets. In an efficient market there must be, in effect, only one […]

Labor Unions in the United States

Gerald Friedman, University of Massachusetts at Amherst Unions and Collective Action In capitalist labor markets, which developed in the nineteenth-century in the United States and Western Europe, workers exchange their time and effort for wages. But even while laboring under the supervision of others, wage earners have never been slaves, because they have recourse from […]

History of Labor Turnover in the U.S.

Laura Owen, DePaul University Labor turnover measures the movement of workers in and out of employment with a particular firm. Consequently, concern with the issue and interest in measuring such movement only arose when working for an employer (rather than self-employment in craft or agricultural production) became the norm. The rise of large scale firms […]