What brought mass innovation to a nation was not scientific advances - its own or others' - but 'economic dynamism': the desire and the space to innovate.
In America, black urban teenagers have long been lacking in inclusion. In France, there is a comparable lack of inclusion among North Africans. In much of Europe, there has been little attempt to include the Roma.
Workers in decent jobs view the economy as unjust if they or their children have virtually no chance of climbing to a higher rung in the socioeconomic ladder.
The epic story of the West is the development in the 19th century of a mass prosperity the world had never seen and its near-disappearance in one nation after another in the 20th.
The level of dynamism is a matter of how fertile the country is in coming up with innovative ideas having prospects of profitability, how adept it is at identifying and nourishing the ideas with the best prospects, and how prepared it is in evaluating and trying out the new products and methods that are launched onto the market.
A nation's economy is more than its markets, tastes, technologies and property rights.
Without being aware, I think I was being indoctrinated into what was called Vitalism, the idea that what makes life worth living, the good life, consists of accepting challenges, solving problems, discovery, personal growth, personal change.
No amount of debt restructuring, even debt forgiveness, will help the Greeks achieve real prosperity. What they need is not short-term relief but, rather, a long-term cure.
Well into the 20th century, scholars viewed economic advances as resulting from commercial innovations enabled by the discoveries of scientists - discoveries that come from outside the economy and out of the blue.
The difficulties of many European countries derive from their corporatism: state projects serving cronies and vast social protection programmes, both run by elites. These surged in the 1970s and 1980s.
I'm not attacking the idea that people live in conglomerations of houses in proximity to one another, sharing the same water mains and the same newspaper delivery boy and so forth. I'm not objecting to that. That could happen with or without homeownership.
Unemployment determination in a modern economy was the main subject area of my research from the mid-1960s to the end of the 1970s and again from the mid-1980s to the early 1990s.
When public spending in the form of transfer payments makes various services and benefits free of charge, work is discouraged. Yet it is precisely Social Security that legislators fear to cut.
Entrepreneurs have only the murkiest picture of the future in which they are making their bets, and also there is ambiguity: they don't know when they push this lever or that lever that the outcome is going to be what they think it is going to be - there is the law of unanticipated consequences.
A system where self-employment and self-finance was typical gave way to a system of companies having various business freedoms and enabling institutions. This was the 'great transformation' on which historians and sociologists as well as business commentators were to write volumes.
Developing new products is labour- intensive. So is producing the capital goods needed to make them. These jobs disappear when innovation stalls.
With less competition to fear, companies are emboldened to raise their mark-ups and profits. That lifts share prices and thus the wealth of already wealthy shareholders.
Mass prosperity came with the mass innovation that sprung up in 1815 in Britain, soon after in America, and later in Germany and France: It brought sustained growth to these nations - also to nations with entrepreneurs willing and able to copy the innovations.
My God, I don't know anyone who likes to accumulate their wealth more than the Europeans.
Corporatist attitudes against capitalism came to the fore in the 1920s. Corporatists, with their conservative values, hated the invasion of towns and regions by new businesses, upsetting traditional ways, wealth and status.
Capitalist systems function less well without state protection of investors, lenders, and companies against monopoly, deception, and fraud.
Raising the minimum wage seems to all economists to, at the very least, fail to 'raise' employment, and we'd all like to see better inclusion of low-skilled workers into good-paying jobs.
Those of us born into vitalist and expressionist cultures must hope that governments will draw back from shutting down the modernist project of exploring, experimenting, and imagining - of voyaging into the unknown - that has been essential for rewarding lives.
A healthy economics has got to have both conceptual, theoretical research and applied, empirical research.
I attended Amherst College from 1951 to 1955. The first two years were a revelation. There were innumerable exchanges with brilliant classmates, among them the playwright Ralph Allen, the classics scholar Robert Fagles, and the composer Michael Sahl.
The main cause of Europe's deep fall - the losses of inclusion, job satisfaction and wage growth - is the devastating slowdown of productivity that began in the late 1990s and struck large swaths of the continent. It holds down the growth of wages rates, and it depresses employment.
I didn't do my work for money or prizes - only for the excitement of discovery.
I don't think the economy telegraphs very clearly where it's going.
America's peak years of indigenous innovation ran from the 1820s to the 1960s. There were a few financial panics and two depressions, to be sure. But in this period, a frenzy of creative activity, economic competition and rapid growth in national income provided widening economic inclusion, rising wages for all, and engaging careers for most.
Unemployment rates tend to rise and fall in roughly equal proportion at all rungs of the ladder, and that happened between 1973 and 1985.
My thinking has always been that the worst problem we have with regard to lack of inclusion is the terribly low labor force participation rates and terribly high unemployment rates of young men, especially young men in ethnic minority groups and, in particular, young black men.
Expertise and judgment in the art of lending for novel ventures must be reacquired.
An economy open to new concepts and novel ventures is bound to generate unequal gains.
In countries operating a largely capitalist system, there does not appear to be a wide understanding among its actors and overseers of either its advantages or its hazards.
After a major loss of dynamism in the 1960s, productivity growth rates began dropping in most countries, falling by half in the U.S. in the 1970s and more or less ceasing altogether in France, Germany and Britain in the late 1990s.
There would be plenty of justification to raise revenues in order to subsidize businesses that employ low-wage workers. But there can be no justification for pandering to the economy's entire bottom half merely to attract its votes.
Liberal redistributionists in favor of heavy taxation place less weight on incentive than do small-government conservatives.
There's such a preoccupation with liquidity and such an unwillingness to invest beyond the horizon of the next quarter and making sure that the CEOs hit their quarterly earnings.
Economics has paid a terrible price for its dalliances with the Keynesian and neoclassical theories.
A modern economy is marked by the feasibility of endogenous change: Modernization brings myriad arrangements from expanded property rights to company law and financial institutions.
When I was in college at Amherst, my father asked me a favor: to take one course in economics. I loved it - for the challenge of its mysteries.
Economists of a classical bent lay a large part of the decline of employment, and thus lagging output, to a contraction of labour supply.
In Greece, Italy and, to a lesser extent, France, unsustainable tax cuts and spending sprees added to households' estimates of their private wealth relative to their wage income.
The best part of the high school in Hastings must have been the Music Department. Its orchestra and concert band did well in county competitions, and the dance band formed by its students was the best in the region. I played lead trumpet in all of them.
Most of the big banks were shot through with short-termism, deceptive practices and self-dealing. We must institute basic changes in corporate governance and in management practice to restore responsibility and honesty for the sake of the economy and for the self-respect of the country.
Chancellor Angela Merkel and Wolfgang Schaeuble, her finance minister, are right to oppose fiscal and bank unions without political union.
The Keynesian belief that 'demand' is always at the root of underemployment and slow growth is a fallacy.
At the simplest level, economics can better show us the consequences of our actions. Less simple are cases in which we don't have the knowledge to predict the full consequences. Global warming and climate change are examples.
Democrats and Republicans have been very keen to make home ownership almost a national purpose.