Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies

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Björn Lemke, M. A.

PhD Student in East European History

Doctoral Project

Ökonomische Ordnungsleistungen und wirtschaftspolitische Ordnungsvorstellungen in Österreich-Ungarn 1897-1910

Economic order and economic-political ideas of order in Austria-Hungary 1897-1910

The double monarchy of Austria-Hungary was an unusual as well as interesting state entity. It combined elements of a federal order with those of a confederation. Both domestic regions are largely sovereign states held together by a thin band of joint responsibilities such as foreign policy and defense. The Community has been formally strengthened by a series of intergovernmental economical “pacts” overseen by the government. Such institutions include the customs and trade alliances, the common currency and central bank. In everyday politics - as well as in finance regarding shared responsibilities - they proved a bone of contention between the two states. A joint supervision of economic questions and matters did not exist. In view of this, the project poses two questions: Which practical services did this institutional setting provide between economic integration and economic autonomy against the background of considerable economic differences as well as conflicts of nationality in the Habsburg monarchy? How did this setting relate to contemporary ideas of a solid economy and policy order? The project is based on an understanding of institutions, which includes not only their social-regulatory functions but also their subjective-intentional functions. Institutions influence not only the social events themselves but also the corresponding ideas of contemporaries. By that economic history is understood more as cultural history. We are now asking not only about the real economic output but also about non-economic and unintended consequences. A working hypothesis of the project is that the institutions of the Habsburg monarchy, despite their shortcomings, were quite capable but were nevertheless increasingly delegitimized as weak and inadequate according to contemporary ideas of good order. The source of the project is, on the one hand, state archives, for example materials from the trade or the finance ministries, and, on the other hand, contemporary material with economic as well as economic-political references, for example association’s magazines analyzing the confrontation of industrial federations both with the dualistic economic order and with the other part of the double state. In regards to the tension between community and social integration and diversity, federalism has often been seen as a possible political solution, yet incompatible with economic requirements. As a subproject of the Emmy Noether Junior Research Group "Organizing Diversity: Federal Imaginations in the Habsburg Monarchy in the Long 19th Century", this dissertation project can therefore expect relevant findings on the economically-focused debate about the existing order of the Habsburg monarchy but also to offer alternatives to dualism.

Curriculum Vitae

Born 1982. Study of History with a focus on modern political science and economics at the Free University of Berlin (2002-2012). Student Employee with the research group "Knowledge, Production Systems and Labor" at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) (2006-2011). Student Employee, Research Assistant of the Project Group "Globalization, Labor and Production Systems" at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) (2011-2012). since August 2012, Project collaborator from the Collegium Carolinum within the framework of the DFG-funded Emmy Noether junior research group "Ordering Diversity. Federalism Ideas in the Habsburg Monarchy and its Successor States". Since August 2012, doctoral project "Economic Governance and Economic Policy Ideas in Austria-Hungary 1897-1910". Since November 2014, Doctoral Candidate of the Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies

Posititions, Assignments and Memberships


Journal Articles and Book Chapters

Zwischen zentrifugalen und zentripetalen Kräften. Ökonomische Integration in der Habsburgermonarchie. In: Gerhard Ambrosius / Christian Henrich-Franke / Cornelius Neutsch (Hgg.): Föderalismus in historisch vergleichender Perspektive, Bd 2: Föderale Systeme: Kaiserreich – Donaumonarchie – Europäische Union, Baden-Baden 2015, S. 169-195.

Wirtschaftliche Integration, sozioökonomische Ungleichheit und dualistische Verfassung. In: Historische Sozialkunde 45 (2), S. 26-30.

Zus. mit Ulrich Jürgens: Der Einfluss der europäischen Integration auf das deutsche System industrieller Beziehungen. In: Studies on North-East Asian Economies 8/2010, S. 39-83 (ebenfalls erschienen als: Doitsu no ro-shikankei seido ni tai suru - o-shu- to-go- no eikyo-. In: Shimizu, Koichi (Hg.): Chiiki to-go- : yo-roppa no keiken to to-ajia, Okayama 2010, S. 58-84.