The introduction to this special report reviews the intertwined history of the state and economics in the twentieth century. It examines the way in which the affirmation of the state as an economic actor was linked to the institutionalization of economics as an academic discipline and to the extension of its objects to the study of the state itself. The contribution of economics to the construction of the state is considered at the level of the policy instruments informed by economic knowledge, as well as at the level of the more general (often competing) representations that have emerged from it and have helped to legitimize the transformations of its scope of intervention. The presentation of the contributions—focused on France, but also on (post-)Soviet Russia and international organizations—questions the redefinition of the (economic) role of the state until the “neoliberal turn,” as well as the transformations of economic expertise and of the mediations between the political-bureaucratic and scientific fields that underlie them.
- historical sociology of political ideas
- sociology of the state
- public policy