Literature

Generally known as 'associative economics', and more extensive in German than in English, a considerable literature exists based mainly on the work of Rudolf Steiner. Steiner’s main text is a seminal course of lectures given in 1922 and published in English originally as World Economy, and then in revised editions (1993, 1996, 2014) entitled Economics – the World as One Economy, reworked for a 'mainstream' readership and including an original synopsis by Christopher Houghton Budd. Importantly, given the predominance of Anglo-Saxon influence in economics, these lectures were given at the same time as the British economist, John Maynard Keynes, conceived his equally seminal work A Tract on Monetary Reform. An introductory essay entitled, Rudolf Steiner, Economist, by Christopher Houghton Budd outlines Steiner’s work in the broader sweep of economic history. 

Apart from this main work, Rudolf Steiner also spoke and wrote about economics in many other contexts, but these other texts are chiefly only available in German. Others have also taken up this work, including Marc Desaules in Switzerland, Udo Herrmannstorfer mainly in Germany and Switzerland, Gary Lamb in the USA, Marco Bertalot in Brazil, and Christopher Houghton Budd and Arthur Edwards in the UK. (These are mentioned because of their treatment of associative economics in terms of economics as such, coupled with their mainly apolitical approach, and in some instances because of the link made to accounting, finance and a rethinking of corporations. The last three also feature prominently in associative economics in mainstream and academic contexts.)

The Economics Conference also provides the setting for various publications, a chief characteristic of which is their collaborative basis. In due course, it is hoped to create an online archive of all works related to associative economics. Various projects of this kind are already being developed in different parts of the world, but they are as yet uncoordinated.