The Scientific Contributions of Heinrich von Stackelberg

  • Peter R. Senn
Part of the The European Heritage in Economics and the Social Sciences book series (EHES, volume 11)


A short introduction explains a fundamental assumption. The political and intellectual realms of a person’s life often are separate – and both change over time. This is followed by a biographical sketch of Stackelberg. Next comes an examination of the historical and theoretical context in which his work occurred. The time was that of the Great Depression and the revolution in thinking about monopolistic situations that occurred as a result. After this, his main contributions are summarized. One of the most important of these was in the analysis of “unstable” market forms (imperfect or monopolistic competition) which did not fit the equilibrium conditions of earlier writers. The next section is devoted to the application of his ideas and techniques to business and the economics of today. A few of the thousands of applications are described. The last section is devoted to an assessment of his contributions from the point of view of modern theory. There is no doubt that he will have a permanent place as one who laid the foundations for modern thinking about game theory and monopolistic situations.


Monetary Policy Modern Theory European Monetary Union Market Form Pure Competition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Jürgen Backhaus, Ursula Backhaus, Wolfgang Drechsler, Merle Kingman, Gerrit Meijer, and Hans-Heinrich Freiherr von Stackelberg helped me with useful critiques for which I thank them. I am particularly obligated to Mary Stone Senn who, in addition to making many specialized computer searches, was helpful in countless other ways. Thanks also to Anita Lauterstein who did much of the typing. Any errors are my own.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter R. Senn
    • 1
  1. 1.EvanstonUSA

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