Diplom-Volkswirt, Dr wirtschaftlichen Staatswissenschaften, Dr Rer Policy, University Cologne, 1953, 1955, 1961.
Research Assistant, Assistant Professor, University Cologne, 1955-1961, 1961-1962. Visiting Professor, University Hamburg, 1961-1962. Professor of Economics, University Karlsruhe, 1962-1965.
Professor of Economics, University Hamburg, 1965-1969. Professor of Economics, University Constance, Konstanz, W. Germany, 1969-. Editorial Board, Theory and Decision, since 1970.
In the wake of a dissertation on the investment ratio in the West German economy, scepticism about the empirical contents of the micro-foundations of economic theory led to investigations into the logical structure of rational action and its importance for the explanation of economic behaviour. The results bear upon formal decision theory, especially a general strategy of rational decisions and a reformulation of procedures for social choice. Normative aspects were treated in essays on evaluation, rele
vance, and formal ethics.
Interest in methodological questions subsequently extended into conceptual problems of economic theory (as shown in articles on the concept of market power), and a general framework for a ‘theory of economic policy’, followed later on by critical appraisals of other schools of thought (sociology and neo-institutional economics). Another issue treated in early work on economic decisions is the possibility of a positive theory of economic behaviour. Fields of application — to be seen in connection with the studies in economic policy — were politicaleconomic processes and the formation of ideologies. Under the influence of the property rights paradigm, institutional constraints were incorporated into behavioural theory in essays on institutional change and on the behaviour of hospitals.
The last topic points to a growing interest in applying economic theories and concepts as well as methods of measurement and evaluation to actual social issues, e.g. workers’ participation, research policy of the State, and lately above all the wide range of health and medical care.