Currency Crises, Monetary Union and the Conduct of Monetary Policy: A Debate among Leading Economists

By Paul J. Zak | Go to book overview

Foreword

Robert A. Mundell

The Bologna-Claremont conferences had their origin in 1967 as the result of an initiative of C. Grove Haines, diplomatic historian and founder and director of the Johns Hopkins Bologna Center of the School of Advanced International Studies. It was a stroke of luck that Randall Hinshaw was then on leave from the Claremont Graduate School as a visiting professor at the Bologna Center and he turned out to be the ideal person to coordinate the meeting and edit the proceedings. Little did we know at that time what an interesting and unique institution was in the offing. Randall's connection with Claremont soon made it the Bologna-Claremont series but it was Randall's quiet persistence and devotion that gave it permanence and justifies calling the series the Hinshaw Conferences.

Vast changes took place in the world economy over the three decades spanned by these meetings. The themes changed with the problems of the international economy but the unifying thread was the international monetary system. Over the years we discussed the adequacy of gold and foreign exchange reserves, inflation, unemployment, payments imbalances, economic growth, exchange rate instability, the European Monetary System, oil prices, international monetary reform, bank stability, developing economies and currency crises. But each meeting devoted a full session to the international monetary system.

The participants at one or more of the meetings included many illustrious leaders of the economics profession: Lionel ( Lord) Robbins, (Sir) Roy Harrod, Robert Triffin, Jacques Rueff, Nicholas ( Lord) Kaldor, (Sir) James Meade, John Parke Young, Paul Samuelson, Helmuth Schlesinger, Willard Thorpe, Milton and

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