Economics and the 2008 crisis: a Keynesian view
Economics and the 2008 crisis: a Keynesian view

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1 Keynes in context

Before we start to develop our Keynesian model of the economy, it is helpful to know something about Keynes and the context that compelled him to develop his theories, which are still influential today. Below you will find a timeline of some of the highlights in Keynes' life, and an audio clip in which two Open University economists discuss some key economic ideas, and Keynes' influence in shaping economics and economic policy.

Click on the link below to launch the timeline and then click and drag your mouse to move along the timeline for highlights in the life and career of John Maynard Keynes (1883–1946). Click on each entry to read some details.

Timeline of life and career of John Maynard Keynes (1883–1946)
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Now listen to the following audio. This audio is taken from Block 2 of the Open University course DD209 Running the economy so there are a number of references to the block, as well as a summary of Block 1 of the course, which you should ignore. As you listen to the discussion, you may find it helpful to note down the key points.

Download this audio clip.Audio player: Open University economists discussing Keynes' ideas and influence
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Open University economists discussing Keynes' ideas and influence
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Activity 1

Thinking about the timeline and your notes from the audio clip you have just listended to, suggest one important economic legacy of Keynes.

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Discussion

Keynes remains, even today, one of the most influential economists. His legacy includes his General Theory (see the timeline) which set out his thinking that economies do not naturally provide jobs for everyone – governments may need to intervene. Keynes is also recognised as one of the founders of the branch of economics called macroeconomics (mentioned in the audio). You may have made other suggestions.

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