A Common Solution: Bailouts in History

Lecture, DHI Washington

In context of the Spring Lecture Series 2013 "Public Debts in History", organized by Laura Rischbieter, Robert E. Wright (Augustana College) holds the lecture " A Common Solution: Bailouts in History".

The escalation of public debts is a central topic of our time – both in in Europe and in the United States. The looming bankruptcies of entire nations are a pending danger, and so far only concerted bailout actions have prevented this scenario. Looking back at the history of public finance, we see that state bankruptcies are not uncommon and that the burdens of public debt can destabilize political systems. This lecture series proposes that the recent European sovereign debt crisis can be better understood as part of the history of economic integration from the 18th century onwards. To what extent and under which circumstances did economies show the same responses to high sovereign debt? When and how did financial crises make it difficult or impossible for countries to repay or refinance their debt without the assistance of third parties? Last but not least, why are bailouts common solutions, and what are some possible solutions for the future?
All lectures begin at 6:30 pm (refreshments will be served from 6:00 to 6:30 pm) and will be held at the German Historical Institute, 1607 New Hampshire Avenue NW (Directions). Please RSVP (acceptances only) by Tel. 202.387.3355, Fax 202.387.6437 or E-mail.

DHI Washington