The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Fabian Economics

  • Elizabeth Durbin
Reference work entry


Despite the Webbs’ disdain for abstract economics (‘sheer waste of time’), economic arguments have always held a central place in the Fabian case for socialism. As in most matters the Fabian Society has approached the dismal science eclectically. Some members have accepted market economics, others have rejected it; some embraced the Keynesian Revolution, others remained sceptical; some have believed in market pricing, others have been convinced that controls are essential for centralized planning. There is no consistent body of thought which could properly be described as Fabian economics. There is nonetheless a distinctive Fabian approach to economics, which this essay identifies while tracing the significant shifts in its key elements.


Beveridge, W. H. Capitalism Clark, C. G. Cole, G. D. H. Dalton, H. Durbin, E.F. M. Equality Exchange value Fabian economics Gaitskell, H. T. N. Imperfect competition Individual freedom Inequality Inheritance Keynesian Revolution Lewis, W. A. Marginal productivity theory Marginal revolution Market socialism Meade, J. E. Mixed economy Monopoly capitalism Nationalization Planning Property Public ownership Redistribution of income and wealth Shaw, G. B. Social democracy Socialism Tawney, R. H. Trade cycle Webb, B. and S 

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© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elizabeth Durbin
    • 1
  1. 1.