The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

War Economy

  • Avner Offer
Reference work entry


In wartime, many markets are suspended. When survival is at stake, governments arrogate the task of setting priorities and the power to allocate resources. The problems of wartime allocation are typically those of management and politics, and have to be resolved ad hoc. The majority of wars since 1945 have taken place in less-developed economies, often in the form of insurgencies or civil wars; but this experience and its literature are both fragmented. What follows is based largely on the experience of Germany, Britain and the United States in the First and Second World Wars, in Korea and in Vietnam.

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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Avner Offer
    • 1
  1. 1.