restricted access Gunnar Myrdal and the Failed Promises of the Postwar International Economic Settlement

Gunnar Myrdal’s An International Economy: Problems and Prospects (1956) was Myrdal’s most systematic account of the postwar international economic order. This essay argues that it should be read as a coming to terms with the failures of planning during the 1940s for an ambitious and redistributive postwar system of international economic governance. In his calls for a “welfare world,” Myrdal attempted to revive certain policy proposals that had been popular during the early years of the Second World War, but which had been pushed aside during the run-up to the Bretton Woods Conference and its aftermath.