The Full Wiki

Mont Pelerin Society: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Mont Pelerin Society is an international organization composed of economists, intellectuals, business leaders, and others who favour classical liberalism; the society advocates free market economic policies and the political values of an open society. The Mont Pelerin Society was created on 10 April 1947 at a conference organized by Friedrich Hayek. Originally, it was to be named the Acton-Tocqueville Society. After Frank Knight protested against naming the group after two “Roman Catholic aristocrats” and Ludwig von Mises expressed concern that the mistakes made by Acton and Tocqueville would be connected with the society, the name of the Swiss resort where it convened was used instead.



In 1947, 39 scholars, mostly economists, with some historians and philosophers, were invited by Professor Friedrich Hayek to meet at Mont Pelerin, Switzerland, and discuss the state, and possible fate of classical liberalism and to combat the “state ascendancy and Marxist or Keynesian planning [that was] sweeping the globe”. In his "Opening Address to a Conference at Mont Pelerin" Hayek mentioned "two men with whom I had most fully discussed the plan for this meeting both have not lived to see its realisation": Henry Simons (who would later train Milton Friedman, a future president of the society, at the University of Chicago) and Sir John Clapham, a senior official of the Bank of England who from 1940–6 was the president of the British Royal Society.

The resulting Mont Pelerin Society aimed to “facilitate an exchange of ideas between like-minded scholars in the hope of strengthening the principles and practice of a free society and to study the workings, virtues, and defects of market-oriented economic systems.”

The Society has continued to meet on a regular basis, usually in September. The current president of the Society is Deepak Lal.

It has close ties to the network of think tanks sponsored in part by the Atlas Economic Research Foundation.

List of participants

The original participants were

Board of Directors 2006-2008

  • Greg Lindsay, President (Australia)
  • Victoria Curzon-Price, Senior Vice President (Switzerland)
  • Carl-Johan Westholm, Secretary (Sweden)
  • Edwin J. Feulner, Treasurer (USA)
  • Leonard Liggio, Vice President (USA)
  • Eduardo Mayora, Vice President (Guatemala)
  • Jean-Pierre Centi, Vice President (France)
  • Ruth Richardson, Vice President (New Zealand)
  • Eamonn Butler, Director (UK)
  • Peter Kurrild-Klitgaard, Director (Denmark)
  • Michael Zoller, Director (Germany)
  • Linda Whetstone, Director (UK)
  • Enrique Ghersi, Director (Peru)
  • J.R. Clark, Director (USA)
  • Hiromitsu Ishi, Director (Japan)


Hayek stressed that the society was to be a scholarly community arguing against collectivism, while not engaging in public relations or propaganda. However, the society has always been a focal point for an international think-tank movement; Hayek himself used it as a forum to encourage members such as Antony Fisher to pursue the think-tank route. Fisher went on to establish the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) in London during 1955, the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C., during 1973, the Manhattan Institute for Public Policy Research in New York City during 1977 and the Atlas Economic Research Foundation in 1981. In turn the Atlas Foundation supports a wide network of think-tanks, including the Fraser Institute.

Prominent MPS members who have advanced to policy positions include Chancellor Ludwig Erhard of West Germany, President Luigi Einaudi of Italy, Chairman Arthur F. Burns of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board, U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz, Foreign Secretary Sir Geoffrey Howe of the U.K., Italian Minister of Defence Antonio Martino, Chilean Finance Minister Carlos Cáceres, New Zealand Finance Minister Ruth Richardson and President Václav Klaus of the Czech Republic. Eight MPS members, F. A. Hayek, Milton Friedman, George Stigler, Maurice Allais, James M. Buchanan, Ronald Coase, Gary S. Becker and Vernon Smith have won Nobel prizes in economics. Of 76 economic advisers on Ronald Reagan's 1980 campaign staff, 22 were MPS members.


This article uses content from the SourceWatch article on Mont Pelerin Society under the terms of the GFDL.

See also

External links

Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address