The Pandemic and Europe

In light of the current Covid-19 crisis, Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold  discussed possible economic policy solutions for Europe on the Frankfurter interdisziplinäre Debatte. He argues in favor of a compromise between an Ordoliberal and Keynesian approach in order to ensure Europe's future economic and political system, showing that a mutual understanding between the European south and north is necessary. 

The Frankfurter interdisziplinäre Debatte is a platform for interdisciplinary discussions on current challenges. The aim is to provide a scientific comprehensive perspective on current socio-political topics.

Link to the article:

FAZ-Article: Der Neo-Fisher-Effekt. Die historische Alternative zur Nullzinspolitik – Nominalzins und Realzins

6th of July 2019 - FAZ No. 154, p. 27

In his article on the Neo-Fisher effect Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold focuses on the zero interest rate policy of the European central bank. He discusses present challenges and presents the Neo-Fisher effect as a possible alternative to the current monetary policy.  

Link to the article: 

Both volumes "Great economic thinkers" are available as E-Books

Dear students,

GDPR Your data

The commencement of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) obliges the chair to obtain an approval for the use of personal information on its web page. Unfortunately we do not have the contact information of every person. If you wish that your information (e.g. your name and the topic of your thesis) is removed from our web page, simply contact us by mail: a.biermann[at]wiwi.uni-frankfurt[dot]de

Damien Nega makes 3rd place in competition for Fraport academic prize

Damien Nega, participant of last year's bachelor seminar "Von Gustav Schmoller zur modernen Institutionenökonomik", made third place in the 2017 competition for the Fraport academic prize awarded by the alumni association "Frankfurter Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Gesellschaft" (fwwg). 

His paper titled "Die Entstehung der historischen Schule" ["The Emergence of the Historical School"] is therefore counted among this year's distinguished bachelor term papers.

The prize had first been awared in 2004 by the fwwg. 

Image source:

More information on the fwwg's academic award here.


Guest Lecture by Prof. Michel De Vroey: "From Keynes to Lucas - The Development of Macroeconomics"

Friday, June 16th 2017, 10:00-12:00 - HoF, Room E.20 (DZ Bank).

Prof. Michel De Vroey is Professor Emeritus at Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium.

He has recently published his book with Cambridge University Press.

Bust of Franz Oppenheimer (centennial of the Goethe University)

On March 30 Franz Oppenheimer would have turned 150

The department of Economics and Business Administration would like to commemorate one of the most famous and distinguished representatives of the economic and social sciences at the Goethe University by erecting his bust in the foyer of the Law and Economics Building (RuW) on 31 March 2014.

Franz Oppenheimer had accepted tenure in sociology and theoretical political economy in 1919 and taught in Frankfurt until 1929. In the year of his retirement Fritz Kormis created the bust. The Jewish Museum Frankfurt is in possession of a gypsum copy of the original bust, which it kindly makes available to the department.

On the occasion of his birthday there will be a vernissage with lectures on Franz Oppenheimer and Fritz Kormis, followed by a temporary photo exhibition. The bust, displayed together with works of Oppenheimer's, will remain at the department for several years.

Just after his retirement Oppenheimer had vacated his Frankfurt flat and withdrew himself to the former manor in Lüdersdorf, where he stayed almost two years and which he helped transform into a rural housing cooperative. He wrote down his memories in the manor house and had them published under the title "Erlebtes, Erstrebtes, Erreichtes" ("Things experienced, saught, achieved"). In this book a photograph of the bust, which the Frankfurt-based sculptor Fritz J. (during his emigration: Fred) Kormis (1896-1986) had created in the late 1920s, was published for the first time. Evidently, Oppenheimer had wished to bequeath to ensuing ages a brazen testimony which was to endure beyond the passage of time. Of this bronze bust, now in possession of his grandchildren in Jerusalem, two gypsum casts were taken; they convey a peculiarly melancholy impression of Oppenheimer.

[According to Volker Caspari und Klaus Lichtblau: "Franz Oppenheimer – Streitbarer Ökonom und Soziologe der ersten Stunde", which will appear on occasion of the university cenntenial in the series "Gründer, Gönner und Gelehrte", published by Societäts-Verlag.]


Photos from the opening ceremony:

Lectures on occasion of the vernissage of Franz Oppenheimer's bust, 30 March 2014 [German]: 

  1. Grußwort des Vizepräsidenten (Prof. Dr. Rainer Klump)
  2. Franz Oppenheimer als Ökonom (Prof. Dr. Volker Caspari)
  3. Franz Oppenheimer als Soziologe (Prof. Dr. Klaus Lichtblau)
  4. Franz Oppenheimer und der Bildhauer Fritz Kommis (Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold)
  5. Jüdische Wissenschaftler in Frankfurt am Main in den Zwanziger Jahren (Michael Lenarz)


Liberal socialist, zionist, utopian:

Exhibition (until 31 May 2014)

The sociologist and political economist Franz Oppenheimer (1864-1943)

During his time Oppenheimer was a famous political economist and sociologist who counted among his students Federal Minister of Economics and later Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr. Ludwig Erhard as well as Minister of Economics of North Rhine-Westphalia Dr. Erik Nölting. He held tenure for the first professorship of sociology at the Goethe University from 1919 to 1929 and published over 50 books and 400 articles throughout his life. After his medical studies in Berlin Oppenheimer had worked temporarily as a physician and later turned to research in sociology and political economy. In his youth he associated with the Friedrichshagen poets' circle in Berlin and was a leading member of the international Zionist movement, at the side of which he stood as advisor during the founding of cooperative agricultural communities in Palestine. Oppenheimer was also involved in the founding of various agricultural producers' cooperatives of which he hoped - as a liberal socialist and vanguard of the social market economy - a solution for the social question of his time would ensue by means of an 'inner colonisation'. His thinking found its way into the agricultural programme of the German Social Democratic Party. During the National Socialist reign he emigrated first to Japan and China in late 1939 and then to the USA, where he died in destitute in Los Angeles in 1943.

This exhibition traces Oppenheimer's in every respect unusual life. Subject-specific peculiarities of the German-speaking economic and social sciences are considered just as much as the familial and historical context in which he moved. In this way and by means of a  scholar's outstanding biography it is possible to document different eras of more recent German history, from the time of Bismarck to the Second World War,



Senior professorship

Ever since March 1974 Professor Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold has held a professorship at the Goethe University's Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, which has now been turned into a senior professorship. The Chair of Economic Thought will continue to offer a range of highly qualified courses and to improve its supervisory relations to students and degree candidates. We are glad to retain at the University of Frankfurt Prof. Schefold as professor emeritus, who will attend to the courses "Einführung in die Volkswirtschaftslehre" and "Theoriegeschichte" during the summer term 2012.

(published on May 7th 2012)

Requests for a Letter of Recommendation

Should you be interested in an individual Letter of Recommendation by Prof. Schefold, please address your request directly to our chair by means of the University's internet portal. Upon your registration, Prof. Schefold will be informed of your request automatically. We will then contact you.

The portal is available under

(published on June 28th 2011)

Prof. Schefold presented with an international Festschrift

A second Festschrift has been published by Routeledge in honor of Prof. Schefold. Its editor Volker Caspari presented Prof. Schefold with the international work on a ceremonial occasion. With this collection of essays titled "The Evolution of Economic Theory" and to which notable authors have contributed, Prof. Schefold is being honored for his academic life's work.


The Festschrift has been published as:
Caspari, Volker (ed.): The Evolution of Economic Theory. Essays in honour of Bertram Schefold. Abington, New York: Routledge 2011.

An earlier Festschrift by his students has been published as: 
Caspari, Volker (Hg.): Theorie und Geschichte der Wirtschaft: Festschrift für Bertram Schefold. Marburg: Metropolis 2008.

(published on May 30th 2011)

Publication on the conference of the Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"

The contributions to the conference "Normen in der Volkswirtschaftslehre - Normung des volkswirtschaftlichen Curriculums", February 2010, have now been published as an anthology. The conference, organised by Bertram Schefold and Volker Caspari, dealt with contrary positions in the "new method dispute" in economics from the perspective of epistemology and the history of economic thought, and against the backdrop of the ignited debate among German economists surrounding the direction and the methods of their discipline.

The conference's output is now summarized in the following publication:
Wohin steuert die ökonomische Wissenschaft? Ein Methodenstreit in der Volkswirtschaftslehre, edited by Volker Caspari and Bertram Schefold. Frankfurt am Main: Campus 2011. (Normative Orders. Schriften des Exzellenzclusters "Die Herausbildung normativer Ordnungen" der Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main, edited by Rainer Forst and Klaus Günther, Bd. 3).

Further information on this publication can be found here.

Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold awarded the Guggenheim Prize

Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold has been awarded the Guggenheim Prize 2010 in Beer Sheva, Israel. With the "Thomas Guggenheim Prize in the History of Economics", the Israeli Ben Gurion University of the Negev honors Prof. Schefold for his life's work as scholar of the history of economic thought. Prof. Schefold is the the first awardee.

The top photo shows late chancellor Prof. Weinblatt, Prof. Schefold and the prize sponsor Prof. Thomas Guggenheim (from left to right) during the ceremonial distinction of the awardee in December 2010. The photo below shows the award.

First Italian-German double doctoral graduation distinguished

The dissertation by Carlo d'Ippoliti, which has been supervised amongst others by Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold, has received two awards for outstanding academic achievement. Having been honored with the "History of Economic Thought Young Scholar Award" of the American History of Economics Society, as well as with the "Storep Young Scholar Awards" of the Italian Association for the History of Political Economy, it is the first Italian-German double doctoral graduation. It was finalized in October 2009 with the involvement of the Goethe University's Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.

Along with Prof. Dr. Dres. h.c. Bertram Schefold, Professoressa Marcella Corsi (PhD) from the University "La Sapienza" in Rome has supervised Carlo d'Ippoliti's dissertation. Secondary referees were Prof. Annamaria Simonazzi of Rome and Prof. Dr. Rainer Klump of Frankfurt. A double doctoral graduation permits the candidates to acquire one doctoral degree in Frankfurt in addition to another at a foreign university by means of a single ordinary procedure.  

Carlo d'Ippoliti's dissertation titled "Diversity and Economics" has been graded summa cum laude and deals with economic discrimination on grounds of one's gender. It is based on the one hand on an investigation of John Stuart Mill and Gustav Schmoller against the background of the history of economic thought. On the other hand Carlo d'Ippoliti analyzes with the help of empirical methods the situation of women in the Italian labor market. The approach linking the history of economic thought and empirical methods is combined with a critical examination of the framework in which the gender-discrimination problem is treated by the neoclassical mainstream in modern economics. An attempt is made to develop an heterodoxical approach to analyzing the special role of women in the labor market by means of a recourse to the works and insights of older branches of theory.


The dissertation has now been published in bookform:

D'Ippoliti, Carlo: Economics and Diversity. Abington and New York: Routledge 2011.