Wilhelm Röpke

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Röpke, Wilhelm


Born Oct. 10, 1899, in Schwarmstedt, Germany; died Feb. 12, 1966, in Geneva. Swiss economist.

Röpke received his higher education at the universities of Göttingen, Tübingen, and Marburg. From 1922 to 1929 he taught at the universities of Marburg, Jena, and Graz and from 1930 to 1932 was in governnment service. He was a professor at the University of Istanbul from 1933 to 1937 and a professor at an institute of international studies in Geneva from 1937 to 1966. In the early 1930’s he joined the advocates of the theories of regulated capitalism in calling on the bourgeois state to play an active role in economic life. In the late 1930’s he moved to a position of neoliberalism.

Röpke was one of the founders of the theory of the social market economy. He devoted a great deal of attention to questions of international economic and currency-credit relations, market conditions, and economic crises. He proposed removing quantitative and currency restrictions on trade between nonsocialist countries and supported freedom of currency convertibility and the elimination of regional economic blocs. A militant apologist for capitalism and an ardent foe of socialism, Röpke recommended that the bourgeois governments follow a discriminatory trade policy in relation to the socialist countries, particularly the USSR.


Die Konjunktur. Jena, 1922.
Die Theorie der Kapitalbildung. Tübingen, 1929.
Civitas Humana. Erlenbach-Zürich, 1944.
Internationale Ordnung. Erlenbach-Zürich, 1945.
Explication économique du monde moderne. Paris, 1946.
1st die deutsche Wirtschaftspolitik richtig? Stuttgart-Cologne, 1950.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Wilhelm Ropke (1899-1966): A Liberal Political Economist and Conservative Social Philosopher
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