From the mid 1950s to the late 1980s, Ralph Harris and Arthur Seldon, as general director and editorial director respectively of the IEA, battled against a conventional wisdom which was hostile to markets. Eventually, by force of argument, they overcame much of the resistance to market ideas, and in the process established the Institute's formidable influence in shaping both opinion and policy. This Occasional Paper begins with a transcript of a conversation with Harris and Seldon which provides many insights into how they worked and what obstacles they encountered. Eight distinguished scholars, each familiar with the work of the Institute, then provide commentaries which assess its influence on thinking and the challenge to government which it constituted during the Harris/Seldon years.
About the Author
Arthur Seldon was the Editorial Director at the Institute of Economic Affairs from the late 1950s until the later 1980s. At the IEA, he directed a publishing programme that included some of the world’s most eminent economists, including FA Hayek and Milton Friedman. Arthur Seldon was a prolific author and one of the most influential economists of the late twentieth century.