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The Review of Evolutionary Political Economy inaugural issue, part 2

Abstract : The present REPE issue 2-2020 is the second part of our inaugural "double pack". We were lucky to receive more papers for the inaugural issue than we could accommodate in one issue. So please enjoy another set of challenging original research papers gauging the field of evolutionary political economy. In Financialisation and the periodisation of capitalism: appearances and processes, Jan Toporowski argues that the analysis of financial processes is essential for understanding changes in the financial system. Only these processes give rise to appearances such as the statistical data that are the basis of most studies of financialization. Those processes are fundamentally determined by the structure of the financial system. Following Minsky, Toporowski focuses on corporate finance which, through its effect on business investment, influences the dynamics of the capitalist system. As financial structures change, this gives rise to particular phases of capitalist development. The paper thus builds on Minsky's historical institutional analysis, but offers a more systematic analysis. It offers a periodization of capitalism through mercantile capitalism, classic, bank-based capitalism, finance capital, state finance capitalism, to pension fund capitalism and capital market inflation. It shows how each period ends with financial difficulties that are overcome with financial innovation leading to a new financial structure with corresponding changes in financial processes. Specifically, the paper argues that the phase of capital market inflation, inaugurated by funded pension schemes in the last decades of the twentieth century, has come to an end in the illiquidity of capital markets that lies behind the 2008 financial crisis. The paper suggests that the measures of "unconventional monetary policy", or "Quantitative Easing", mark a new period of state finance capital with a return to the state support of a structurally illiquid capital market that already had prevailed in Europe and North America from the 1930s to the 1960s. The discipline of International Political Economy-IPE has been flirting with evolutionary approaches for the past decade or so. So far, attempts to develop a take on evolutionary theory have proceeded in a rather unstructured way: They range from potential applications of Darwinian theory of selection to more recent efforts to draw on ecological approaches and complexity theory when analysing crises and transformations. There has also been a renewed interest in institutionalist approaches and heterodox tradition, but this too, has been a fragmented process. Ronen Palan's article An Evolutionary Approach to International Political Economy: The Case of Corporate Tax Avoidance aims to offer a pathway to a more systemic framework of evolutionary political economy, in order to rethink the changes in the regulation on the contemporary system of states. Palan develops his approach by distinguishing between a tradition of political economy based on action of discreet entities (this reflects the roots of IPE in neoclassical economics) and a tradition of thought centred around a concept of transaction (taking root in original institutional economics). This framework
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Submitted on : Wednesday, November 11, 2020 - 6:10:51 PM
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Silvano Cincotti, Wolfram Elsner, Nathalie Lazaric, Anastasia Nesvetailova, Engelbert Stockhammer. The Review of Evolutionary Political Economy inaugural issue, part 2. Review of Evolutionary Political Economy, 2020, 1 (2), pp.145-148. ⟨10.1007/s43253-020-00020-5⟩. ⟨halshs-02933700⟩

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