Comparative Economic Systems

There are three basic kinds of allocation mechanisms: traditional, market, and command. In a traditional economy allocation decisions depend on custom, what has been done in the past. In a market economy allocation decisions are made by individuals or firms on the basis of price signals emanating from the interaction of supply and demand. In a command economy the most important allocation decisions are made by government authorities and are imposed by law or by force. This course weaves together theory and history to explain socialismˇ¦s origins, inner workings, collapse, and transformation, as well as alternative paths in Western Europe and Asia.