From Stage Theories to the Concept of Economic Styles

  • Matthias P. Altmann
Part of the The European Heritage in Economics and the Social Sciences book series (EHES, volume 8)


The relevance of the Historical School for modern development economics arises not only from its members’ methodological contributions, but also from the research findings and concepts that emerged from applying this methodology on problems of economic development. A particularly notable example is the attempts to identify typical development paths and stages of economic development. This research entered into the development of the concept of the economic system by Werner Sombart, who devised it as an analytical tool to distinguish alternative ways of organising economic life from an historical perspective. Sombart’s ­economic systems finally served Arthur Spiethoff as the basis for the formulation of his concept of economic styles, which, as will be shown in Chap. 13, embraces in a single concept all demands on a theoretical framework for the study of today’s low-income countries.


Economic System Ideal Type Economic Life Economic Form Economic Phenomenon 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CologneGermany

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