The Essential Joseph Schumpeter
Joseph Schumpeter is one of the most accomplished economists of the twentieth century. Included among his many contributions is his path-breaking work on entrepreneurship—of the quintessential characteristics of all market economies.
His timeless phrase describing the entrepreneurial process as one of “creative destruction” is likely second only to Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” in its daily use in popular tweets, blog posts, speeches, and articles. Renowned Chicago economist Jacob Viner praised Schumpeter’s History of Economic Analysis as “by a wide margin… the most brilliant contribution to the history of analytical phases of our discipline which has ever been made”. However, it is Schumpeter’s Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, in which Schumpeter describes the mechanisms—entrepreneurs, innovation, and capital reallocation—that drive the “incessant” recreation of capitalism that is by far his most popular and successful work.