Call for Papers

 The 19th Annual Conference of the European Society for the History of Economic Thought (ESHET) will take place in Rome, Roma Tre University, 14-16 May 2015. Proposals for papers or sessions on all aspects of the history of economic thought are welcome. An abstract of about 400 words for a paper and 600 words for a session should be submitted on the conference website  no later than January12th, 2015 (postponed to January 19th, 2015)  

Note that: a) published papers are not eligible for submission; b) only one conference presentation is allowed per person (but more than one submission may be accepted, if involving co-authors who are also presenting); c) session proposals must conform with a standard format (3 papers, 90 min).

Particularly welcome are proposals of papers and sessions that fall into the ESHET 2015 conference theme: 

Great controversies in economics

The clash of opinions constitutes one of the main driving forces in the advancement of knowledge. While this applies to all the sciences, controversies in the study of economic phenomena have a particularly significant role. The changing nature of the subject matter of economic theory over time and space, the circumstance that economists, with their value judgements, belong to the system they themselves study, and the fact that no economic theory is neutral in terms of its social and welfare implications may account for this.  

A list of the great controversies in the history of economic thought may well include the monetary controversies of the19th century, the Methodenstreit, the Cambridge controversy over the theory of capital, and, more recently, disputes over rules vs. discretion, fiscal austerity and the causes and consequences of economic crises from the Great Depression to the present day.

These controversies, unquestionably significant per se, can be regarded as instances of deeper fault lines characterizing the evolution of economic thinking over time. Two main divides come immediately to mind in this respect. First, over the issue as to whether a market-based economy tends naturally to use its resources in the best possible way without any State intervention beyond that of providing basic infrastructure and protecting property rights: a matter of concern from the times of the General Glut controversy that saw Malthus opposed to Ricardo down to the debates that have marked the evolution of macroeconomics since the publication of Keynes' General Theory. Closely connected to this first issue is the following: whether and, if so, to what extent the allocation and distribution of resources affect and are themselves affected by different social groups and institutions or are solely determined by technology, preferences and endowments (as exemplified by the differing views on wage determination entertained by classical, institutional or neoclassical economists). The well-known methodological divide between the mainly deductive approach to the study of economic problems and other approaches that attribute more weight to historical-inductive reasoning or specific perspectives (e.g. feminist economics) cuts across the issues mentioned above.

Participants are welcome to address any issue related to specific and general controversies in economics or the effectiveness of communication between different schools of thought or the importance of pluralism in economics.



ESHET invites young scholars -- persons currently enrolled in a PhD, or who have been awarded a PhD no more than two years prior to May 2015 (and regardless of age) -- to submit their work to the Young Scholars Seminar to be held on the occasion of tjhe ESHET Conference. 

Up to six submissions will be selected: ESHET will cover travel expenses up to €300, accommodation costs up to €80/night for three nights, and the registration fee. The authors of the selected papers will have 20 minutes each to present the paper, and a senior sholar will disscuss it. Papers may be on any topic relevant to the history of economic thought, and are not restricted to the conference theme.  

Candidates should e-mail a paper no longer than 9000 words to Professors Richard Sturn ( and Annalisa Rosselli ( by February 9th, 2015. Authors will be notified about the result of the selection process by March 23rd, 2015. 

Please include documentation of your (and your co-authors) position vis à vis your PhD, and indicate in the Subject of your e-mail: for Young Scholars Seminar.

ESHET encourages young scholars to participate in the conference. A one-year ESHET membership is offered to all young scholars who submit a paper. Papers that have not been selected will be considered for presentation at other conference sessions.

The Scientific Committee 

Tony Aspromourgos (The University of Sydney)

José Luis Cardoso (Universidade de Lisboa)

Roberto Ciccone (Università Roma Tre)

Cristina Marcuzzo (Sapienza Università di Roma)

Annalisa Rosselli (Università degli Studi di Roma "Tor Vergata")

Antonella Stirati (Università Roma Tre) 


The conference will start on May 14th at 1.00 pm.