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» Economics » Economist (20. Jh.) » Topics begins with L » Ludwig von Mises

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Ludwig von Mises (* 29 September 1881 in Lemberg; "† 10 October 1973 in New York) was a Austrian economist and one of the most important representatives of the liberals Austrian school of the economics in 20. Century.


From Mises was starting from 1906 coworkers handels and of the chamber of industry in Vienna and led there the financial department; he taught striking width unit starting from 1913 in an unpaid Privatdozentur, starting from 1918 as a professor at the University of Vienna, as well as starting from 1934 at Institut of the international in Geneva. Was from Mises one of the prominent economic advisers of the Austrian government; its most important coworker at the time was Friedrich August von Hayek.

From Switzerland emigrierte from Mises in the year 1940 into the USA. There it informed from 1945 to 1969 - at that time as an oldest teaching professor in the USA - at the university of New York.

From Mises member of the liberals was think tank Mont Pelerin Society. Important pupils of Mises' are beside Hayek about Hans-Herman Hoppe and Murray Rothbard. Over these thoughts of Mises' were received into the Libertarismus.

Its brother was a mathematician Richard of Mises.


First trailer of the historical school was from Mises around Gustav Schmoller, became however after acquaintance with the writings Carl Mengers to the convinced "Austrian". It studied theory of the money and the rotating means starting from 1903 with Eugen of Bawerk and extended its theories with its writing.

In its book the social economy (later English than Socialism) it justified already 1922 theoretically that a pure planned economy cannot function, because there is no possibility in it to determine prices. Its at the time outrageous forecast of the collapse of socialist economic systems should be confirmed then scarcely 70 years later in the Eastern Bloc in the reality.

From Mises regarded capitalism as a guarantor of human liberty and the only functional economic system. Only by free managing the modern conditions of production developed and only thereby can continue it. It considered each national interference, which went beyond the night watchman state, dangerous. After its theory such interventions would pull always new and to the socialism would finally lead, which leads again to a radical lowering of the general prosperity.

In and the 30's 20's one of the few German-language intellectual ones from Mises, which held to the classical liberalism, was. In its book liberalism of 1927 it tried to justify this on utilitaristischer basis logically. This logic led it to alliance politics weighing all aspects. It wrote: "It cannot be denied that the Faszismus and all similar dictatorship efforts are full from the best intentions and that their intervention saved the European Gesittung for the instant. The service, which the Faszismus thereby rendered, in history will eternally away-live." (Liberalism, P. 45, Faszismus = from the Italian derived, at that time usual Schreibwewise for today fascism)

Although it had personally quite conservative value conceptions, it occurred also for the legalization of drugs. He saw the most important means to the international peace in the dismantling of all barriers to trade; besides it rejected national schools, there it in these - particularly in the Eastern Europe at that time - a means for the suppression of minorities saw.

1940 it published the book political economy, which should summarize the entire theories of the "Austrian school". This work appeared again clearly extended 1949 in the USA under the title human Action. It should supply a complete science of human acting, which called from Mises Praxeologie. As only correct method of these Praxeologie, which the economic science should cover as subsection, logical-deductive reasoning saw from Mises. The Praxeologie can determine so objective, A priori true laws. The book was extended in further editions still and covered finally scarcely 1000 pages.

Under the further works are important: Bureaucracy (dt. the bureaucracy), in which it set up and stated a theory of bureaucratic managing that bureaucracy was necessary consequence of national activity, as well as some theoretical writings, which were concerned with the methodology of the economics and defend in which it its Praxeologie to justify and tried.

Rezeption and criticism

Almost all economists, also for instance of Mises' of own pupils Hayek, criticized the Praxeologie as useless and turned away from its Dogmatismus increasing at the age. The faith, one can determine economic laws A priori by purely deductive conclusions and without empirical observation, accordingly by nearly all today's economists is rejected. In particular the critical rationalism around Karl Popper - attacked sharply which from Mises - this conception rejects. The Praxeologie could not itself intersperse outside of a small, but at present increasing circle of Mises trailers. Against it economists to today resemblance find fewer dogma tables the works of Mises' with many liberals. The refutation of socialist managing into the social economy is recognized by many, and also its views over all areas of life a comprehensive liberalism become in the meantime again estimated from many liberals.

Since 2005 Dr. becomes Dr. h on initiative of Professor. 2006 created Ludwig of Mises forum Bayreuth at the University of Bayreuth regularly the Ludwig of Mises lecture accomplished C. Peter Oberender (University of Bayreuth) and that, in which the theses of the Austrian school of the political economy (Austrian Economics) will transfer critically discussed and to current problems. Past guests were Professor Dr. Hans-Hermann Hoppe (University OF Nevada read Vegas, the USA) and Professor Dr. Guido (Universit d'Angers, France).



  • Margit of Mises: Ludwig von Mises, humans and its work. Philosophia publishing house, Munich 1981. ISBN 3-88405-024-9
  • Albert H. Zlabinger: Ludwig von Mises. COMDOK publishing house, sank Augustin 1994. ISBN 3-89351-085-0
  • Kurt R. Leube: Over Ludwig von Mises. Publishing house economics and finances, Duesseldorf 1996. ISBN 3-87881-103-9
  • Carsten Pallas: Ludwig von Mises as a pioneer of the modern money and economic situation teachings. Metropolis publishing house, Marburg 2005. ISBN 3-89518-437-3


Ludwig von Mises was brother of the mathematician Richard of Mises.

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