Several characteristics distinguish Pounds' book from others of its type. The author is professor of both geography and history at Indiana University, and his geographical orientation is reflected not only in his numerous graphs, maps, and tables, but in his comprehension of the limitations which environmental forces imposed on medieval man. He emphasizes in this connection that a large volume of international trade was impossible throughout the Middle Ages : risks and distances were too great, prices too low, and ships too small.
He constantly evokes the local, restricted milieu in which most persons necessarily lived. Pounds is at his best and most imaginative in his analysis of the economic growth of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries see for example p. His pages on agriculture and rural society and on population questions are fuller than those on towns and trade, but this implies no inadequacy of the latter.
A considerable strength of Pound's treatment is that while he in no way neglects economic theory, he emphasizes the reflection of economic activity upon communities of persons and buttresses his general statements with relevant descriptions of communities, persons, or institutions. The Belgian economic historian, Henri Pirenne, has one thesis. There are other hypotheses such as that of the British economic historian Postan which will also be considered. The course will trace the emergence of commercial development in Renaissance Italy and its later transfer to northwestern Europe, particularly the Low Countries and later Britain.
This is followed by the Industrial Revolution, first in Britain, then Belgium and later the rest of Europe and ultimately the rest of the world. The course will end with material on the economies of Eastern Europe making the transition from centrally planned socialism to market economies and finally the economic development of the European Union. Instructions for logging on to the WebCT site.
Here is the download site for RealPlayers. Once you have downloaded the appropriate Real Player and accessed the WebCT site you can click on links for the lectures and view them. A series of measures were proposed, which included the coordination of medium-term economic plans, the establishment of immediate and unconditional short-term credit facilities for those with difficulties in their balance of payments, and the establishment of medium-term credit facilities with a conditional term for persistent balance of payments difficulties.
The Werner Report , or Werner Plan, proposed reaching the final goal of a full integration over a year horizon through a process consisting of three stages:.
The first stage, which was to be concluded in , was intended to limit exchange rate fluctuations in the member states' currencies, to expand credit facilities in the short and medium term, and to achieve greater cooperation between the economic policies of member countries. In the next two stages, exchange rates would be fixed irrevocably. Due to the great monetary instability caused by the s energy crisis, the project to implement the Werner Report, which should have begun in , was never put into action.
In order to counter the instability and volatility of exchange rates, the member countries decided to create the European Monetary System EMS with the participation of all member countries of the European Economic Community EEC , with the exception of the United Kingdom. With the creation of the EMS at the beginning of , a new stage of economic integration in Europe began.
Syllabus for Econ The Economic History of Europe
The EMS was created through the agreement of the central banks of European Community member countries in order to manage intra-Community nominal exchange rates and to finance interventions in the foreign exchange markets. That is, a system of fixed but adjustable exchange rates, where exchange rates were delimited with fluctuation bands for nominal exchange rates. The European Monetary System established a grid of bilateral parities between all the participating currencies and also parities of each of the participating currencies with respect to the European Currency Unit or ECU a basket consisting of a certain amount of each currency of the 15 countries that formed the European Union.
At the European Council meeting in Hanover, the Single European Act was adopted; the Member States confirmed the objective of the progressive development of an economic and monetary union. The Delors committee submitted a report in April , which envisaged the creation of a European System of Central Banks and a single currency, while envisaging the transition to an Economic Monetary Union as a process composed of 3 phases:.
The Maastricht Treaty established the legal framework for EMU, which established the basic timetable for its main stages and set the convergence criteria for the member countries. The first phase , which began in July , consisted of free movement of capital in the European Union removal of exchange controls , increased resources to eliminate inequalities between the regions of the Member States Structural Funds and economic convergence through multilateral surveillance of the economic policies of member countries.
It would carry out the necessary preparatory work for the establishment of the European System of Central Banks ESCB , for the management of the single monetary policy and for the creation of a single currency in the third stage. At the end of , the European Council decided that a European monetary unit, to be introduced in the third phase beginning at the beginning of , would be called 'Euro', and determined the chronological order of the events that marked the transition process to the euro.
An Economic History of Europe : Knowledge, Institutions and Growth, 600 to the Present
The aim was to achieve the independence of the national central banks and the adoption of rules aimed at reducing budget deficits. At the European Council in mid the Stability and Growth Pact , which aims at ensuring budgetary discipline, was adopted. The third stage , at the beginning of , and the last stage of the Economic Monetary Union were the fixing of the exchange rates of the currencies of the 11 participating member countries which had participated from the beginning of the European Union and the beginning of the implementation of the monetary policy under the sole responsibility of the European Central Bank ECB.
Those who were part of the European Union and wanted to adopt the euro had to first meet the convergence criteria established by the Maastricht Treaty. From onwards, the political divisions between Eastern Europe and Western Europe were finally settled by the incorporation of these countries into the European Union. In , the financial crisis hit, shaking the foundations of the world economy and, above all, the policies that had been applied up to that point. The Treaty of Lisbon was put into action in It provides for a modernization of European institutions and more efficient working methods within the European Union.