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Introduction: The Highjacking of German Ordoliberalism

Brigitte Young



The purpose of this Special Issue is to shed light on to the theoretical thicket of the ideational origin and narrative of German ordoliberalism and ask whether the ideas of ordoliberalism function as a coherent repertoire or blueprint for Eurozone crisis management. It may have been unintended by German political actors, but the ideas of ordoliberalism have been catapulted from an internationally largely forgotten school of economic thought into the limelight and controversy over Germany’s supposedly insistence on rule-based austerity in managing the Eurozone crisis. Rather than dismissing the supposedly Germanic rule-based ordoliberal approach, the authors of this Special Issue hope to start a more nuanced debate on the strength and weaknesses of ordoliberalism as a theoretical and policy paradigm. The articles of leading German experts on ordoliberalism should at least provide a starting point for an informed discussion.

JEL-Classification: B26, D43, E61, G18, P16

Keywords: Ordoliberalism, two neoliberalisms, pragmatism, social market economy, eurozone crisis, strong state, constitutional economics.


Bibliography: Young, Brigitte: Introduction: The Highjacking of German Ordoliberalism, ERIS, 3-2015, pp. 7-15.


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