OERGOrganizational Effectiveness Research Group (Minnesota State University; Mankato, MN)
OERGOld English Reading Group (UK)
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References in periodicals archive ?
For some time, Harrod occasionally labelled the OERG 'the trade cycle group', both in private correspondence and in the heading of one of the papers discussing the results of the inquiry,(24) This might induce into thinking that the group's inquiry was mainly addressed to trade cycle problems.
This scheme of thought provided the reference framework for the discussions taking place within the OERG on the implications of their results on the trade cycle.
Hitch argued his point by comparing the course of the cycle resulting from two simple models based on difference equations whose driving force was the interaction of the multiplier and the Relation ('Notes on Imperfect Competition and the Trade Cycle', pp.1820).Other elements of Harrod's terminology which are found in these and other writings by members of the OERG - such as the 'breathing space' at the end of the boom, or the analysis of stabilising and de-stabilising factors - clearly add strength to the impression that Harrod's approach to the cycle provided the theoretical framework for the discussion of related problems within the group.
The second lies in the general lack of understanding of the role of the analysis of individual behaviour in Harrod's theory on the part of his contemporary commentators: very much to his dismay, several readers considered it as an extraneous element to the explanation of the cycle, and their comments disappointed Harrod and might have helped discourage him from pursuing this line of thought.(31) The third is again connected with the OERG's research.
The first OERG interview took place on 31 January 1936, too late to exert any influence on the theoretical layout of Harrod's book.
In the light of his view of the part played by the rate of interest and monetary policy, Harrod could not have been much startled by the results of the OERG inquiry.
This gave Harrod occasion to mention the OERG research:
Harrod played an important role within the OERG. He was the proposer of the research; in the first stages of the inquiry he took upon himself a good deal of the drafting and polishing of the reports;(35) he attempted the first systematisation of the results concerning prices and costs; he presented the group's activity before the British Association; he channelled the first discussions on the pricing principle towards its implications for the trade cycle, while his book on The Trade Cycle provided the notional and conceptual reference framework for all the discussions on the topic occurring within the group.
The outcome of the OERG research affected the development of Harrod's thought beyond his book on The Trade Cycle.
The surviving evidence thus seems to indicate that Harrod influenced the general line of the OERG research to a deeper extent than his approach was affected by its ensuing results.
Fourth, the place of induction and deduction in economic theory was the topic of the presidential address he delivered before the same assembly one year later; there, Harrod explicitly mentioned the OERG research as one of the possible lines of empirical inquiry enabling one to infer some generalisations as to the entrepreneur's behaviour (Harrod, 1938, pp.409-10).
First, the consequences of Harrod's participation in the work of the OERG outlined above took effect almost immediately, as can be seen from Harrod's recasting of his theory of the cycle in 1938 (Harrod, 1996).