The European economic growth after the Second World War

Resource Type
Dataset : Survey and aggregate data
  • Bittner, Thomas (Universität Münster, Institut für Wirtschaftsgeschichte)
Publication Date
  • ZA:
    • Historical Studies Data
  • Abstract

    The current growing interest in the growth of the Western European economies between the end of World War II and the first oil crisis of 1973 is primarily due to the end of the Cold War and the subsequent demand for solutions for the economic problems of Central and Eastern European transition countries. It was and is discussed to what extent we could learn from the successful rebuilding of the Western European economies. In this context one area of special interest is the reconstruction of West Germany, closely accompanied by the principle of the social market economy. The recollection of this principle, and the call for a new Marshall Plan imply the idea that the Western European post-war boom in essence can be traced to a successful economic policy. It is shown how this assumption can stand up to a theoretical and empirical analysis. Using the new growth theory and the cointegration analysis both national (eg social market economy and Planification (i.e. macroeconomic framework development planning)) and international explanations (eg the Marshall Plan) of the so called ‘golden age’ are examined. It turns out that the impact of economic policies on economic growth must be put into perspective. In contrast, the importance of the different economic conditions of the countries for the explication of their growth process is underlined. Variables, inter alia: - Investment behavior of industry - Production and Export industry - Exchange Rates - Structure of the economies Data focus: Foreign trade structure, external value (foreign wholesale prices), export volume, industrial production, capital stock, long-term development (income, investment rates, openness, exchange rates), patents (patent applications in Germany, France). List of tables in the database HISTAT ZA: - Investment rates in four European countries (1880-1995) - Net fixed assets of the industry in Germany (1950-1968) - Sectoral Gross capital expenditures in Germany (1960-1976) - Sectoral Gross investment in France (1949-1965) - Export volume index of France and the Federal Republic of Germany (1950-1973) - Export volume in millions of current U.S. dollars (1951-1990) - Weighted exchange rate index in indirect rate (1950-1973) - Index of industrial production in Europe and North America (1950-1973) - Construction and equipment investment in Germany (1950-1968) - Investment rates in four European countries (1880-1995) - Sectoral gross and net capital stock in France (1950-1970) - Sectoral gross and net capital stock, investment in France (1950-1969) - Percentage of the French colonies in the French total exports (1950-1973) - Openness of four European economies (1880-1994) - Annual patent applications in the United States (1963-1995) - Real per capita income in Europe and the United States (1870-1992) - Regional structure of the French export value (1896-1973) - French sector gross investment (1960-1976) - Exchange rates in four European countries (1891-1995) Territory of investigation: Germany, France, further OECD-states. Sources: Publications of the official French and German statistics, publications of the OECD, USA and further states; scientific journals.
Temporal Coverage
  • 1947 / 1973
Geographic Coverage
  • Germany (DE)
  • France (FR)
  • OECD countries
Data and File Information
  • Unit Type: Text Unit
    Number of Units: 97
    Number of Variables: 457
A - Data and documents are released for academic research and teaching.
All metadata from GESIS DBK are available free of restriction under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication. However, GESIS requests that you actively acknowledge and give attribution to all metadata sources, such as the data providers and any data aggregators, including GESIS. For further information see
Alternative Identifiers
  • ZA8155 (Type: ZA-No.)
  • Bittner, Thomas: Das westeuropäische Wirtschaftswachstum nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg. Eine Analyse unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Planification und der Sozialen Marktwirtschaft. Münsteraner Beiträge zur Cliometrie und quantitativer Wirtschaftsgeschichte, Münster: LIT Verlag, 2001.

Update Metadata: 2021-04-07 | Issue Number: 65 | Registration Date: 2010-07-23