2024 (21), №1

Victor Novozhilov: The Unfinished Chapter of the “Austrian” Book

For citation: 

Kavaliou, A. V. (2024). Victor Novozhilov: The Unfinished Chapter of the “Austrian” Book. AlterEconomics, 21(1), 58–81. https://doi.org/10.31063/AlterEconomics/2024.21-1.5


The increasing complexity of economic phenomena demands improved analytical tools. The 21st century saw a discernible trend where diverse economic schools and various social sciences converged to collaboratively analyze complex economic phenomena. Traces of this trend, however, can be discerned in an earlier period in Soviet science, as illustrated by the work of Viktor Novozhilov, a leading figure in the mathema­tical school of optimal planning during the late 1930s. Despite this subsequent focus, a series of articles from the 1920s, which positioned Novozhilov among the country’s foremost economists, reflect entirely different theoretical positions. Classified as a liberal economist in the comprehensive scientific biography by Nikolai Ya. Petrakov and Natalia S. Kozerskaya, the article aims to highlight the consistency of Novozhilov’s 1920s views with the approaches of the Austrian school of economics, using content analysis as the primary research method. The article views Novozhilov’s change in research approach as the scholar’s strategic response to repressive conditions, driven by his apprehensions about potential persecution. Novozhilov’s principal concept for determining socialist national economic efficiency was rooted in the principle of opportunity costs from the Austrian school. Future research may explore parallels between Novozhilov’s approach and Friedrich von Wieser’s perspective on the valuation of capital goods.

PDF full
Downloaded: 21

Aliaksandr V. Kavaliou — Cand. Sci. (Econ.), Associate Professor, Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Law, Belarusian National Technical University; https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0172-6447 (65, Prospect Nezavisimosti, Minsk, 220013, Republic of Belarus; e-mail: kavaliou.aliaksandr@gmail.com).

Antonelli, E. (1953). Le souvenir de Leon Walras. Leon Walras et Carl Menger a travers leur correspondence. Economic Applique, 6.

Avtonomov, V. S., & Makasheva, N. A. (2018). The Austrian school of economics in Russia: From criticism and rejection to absorption and adoption. Russian Journal of Economics, 4 (1), 31–43. https://doi.org/10.3897/j.ruje.4.26002

Bažantová, I. (2016). Czech economist Karel Engliš and his relation to the Austrian School in the first half of the 20th century. Prague Economic Papers, 25 (2), 234–246. https://doi.org/10.18267/j.pep.557

Bazhenov, G. A. (2015). Methodological Differentiation of Directions of the Austrian School: Marginalization or Integration with the Mainstream? Izvestiya UrGEU [Journal of the Ural State University of Economics], 6 (62), 14–22. (In Russ.)

Belykh, A. A. (2016). Russian School of mathematical economics. In Gilbert Faccarello, Heinz D. Kurz (Eds.) Handbook on the History of Economic Analysis: Schools of Thought in Economics. Vol. II (pp. 329–342). EE Publishing.

Bilimovitch, A. D. (1914). K voprosu o rastsenke khozyaystvennykh blag [On the valuation of economic goods]. Kyiv, Russian Empire: St. Vladimir University Pub., 334. (In Russ.)

Bruckus, B. D. (1999). Sotsialisticheskoe khozyaystvo. Teoreticheskie mysli po povodu russkogo opyta [Socialist economy. Theoretical thoughts about the Russian experience]. Moscow, Russia: Publ. House Strelets, 93. (In Russ.)

Bukharin, N. I. (1988). Politicheskaya ekonomiya rant’e: Teoriya tsennosti i pribyli avstriyskoy shkoly [Political economy of Rentier: The theory of value and profit by the Austrian school]. Moscow, the USSR: Orbita Publ., 191. (In Russ.)

Campbell, R. W. (1961). Marx, Kantorovich and Novozhilov. Stoimost’ versus Reality. American Slavic and East European Review, 20 (3), 402–418.

Ellman, M. (1973). Planning Problems in the USSR: The Contribution of Mathematical Economics to their solution 1960–1971. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 222.

Frolov, V. I. (2013). Thermodynamic approach to the differential costs as “Costs Novozhilov’” in eva­luation of economic efficiency. Nauchno-tekhnicheskie vedomosti Sankt-Peterburgskogo gosudarstvennogo politekhnicheskogo universiteta. Ekonomicheskie nauki [St. Petersburg State Polytechnical University Journal. Economics], 1, 148–154. (In Russ.)

Gloria-Palermo, S. (1999). The Evolution of Austrian Economics. Routledge.

Grebennikov, P. I. (2012). Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov v ekonomicheskoy nauke XX veka [Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov in Economic Science of XX century]. Izbrannye trudy. T. 1. Problemy izmereniya zatrat i rezul’tatov pri optimal’nom planirovanii [Selected Works. Vol. 1. Problems Of Cost Benefit Analysis in Optimal Planning] (pp. 3–15). Saint Petersburg, Russia: Polytechnical Institute Publishing. (In Russ.)

Hagendorf, K. (2012). Victor Valentinovich Novozhilov: A Marxian Mathematical Economist. In Honour of the 120 Anniversary of His Birth. World Review of Political Economy, 3 (2), 203–217. https://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2164935

Hayek, F. A. (1935). The Present State of the Debate. In F. Hayek (Ed.). Collectivist Economic Planning (pp. 201–243). George Routledge & Sons.

Hayek, F. A. (1940). Socialist Calculation: The Competitive ‘Solution’. Economica, New Series, 7 (26), 125–149. https://doi.org/10.2307/2548692

Hayek, F. A. (2000). The Use of knowledge in society. Individualizm i ekonomicheskiy poryadok [Individualism and Economic Order] (pp. 93–110). Moscow, Russia: Izograf. (In Russ.)

Hayek, F. A. (2008). Tseny i proizvodstvo [Prices and Production]. Chelyabinsk, Russia: Sotsium, 199. (In Russ.)

Hayek, F. A. (2009). Sud’by liberalizma v XX veke [The fortunes of liberalism: Essays on Austrian economics and the ideal of freedom]. Moscow, Russia: IRISEN, Mysl’; Chelyabinsk, Russia: Sotsium. 337. (In Russ.)

Hudik, M. (2007). František Čuhel (1862–1914). New Perspectives on Political Economy, 3 (1), 3–14.

Hunter, H., & Campbell, R. W. (2008). Novozhilov, Viktor Valentinovich (1892–1970). In S. N. Durlauf, L. E. Blume (Eds.) The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics (pp. 4648–4649). London: Palgrave Macmillan. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-349-95121-5_1910-2

Kaliadina, S. A. (1994). V. V. Leont’ev i repressii 1920-kh godov (interv’yu s V. Leont’evym) [W.W. Leontief and the Repressions of the 1920s: an Interview]. Vol. 2. Repressirovannaya nauka [The oppressed Science] (pp. 187–194). Saint Petersburg, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Katzenelenbaum, Z. S. (1928). Uchenie o den’gakh i kredite [Studies on Money and Credit]. 4th ed. Moscow, the USSR: Ekonomicheskaya zhizn Publ., 520. (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A. (2018). Mises’ Monetary Argument in Economic Calculation Debate: Cross the Ts and dot the Is. REVISTA PROCESOS DE MERCADO, 15 (1), 95–118. https://doi.org/10.52195/pm.v15i1.62

Kavaliou, A. V. (2008). Economic calculation under socialism: modern understanding of discussion. Vestnik BNTU, 2, 52–60. (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A. V. (2014). Idei avstriyskoy shkoly v sovetskoy ekonomicheskoy literature 1920-kh godov [Ideas of Austrian School in Soviet Economic Literature in 1920s]. In P. Usanov, D. Nefedov (Eds.). Collected papers. Kapitalizm i svoboda [Capitalism and Freedom] (pp. 88–105). Saint Petersburg, Russia: Nestor-istoriya Publ. (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A. V. (2015). Austrian Business Cycle Theory: An Evolution and Contemporary Condition. Ekonomicheskaya politika [Economic Policy], 10 (2), 43–62. (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A. V. (2018). Economic Theory: Back to the Future? Voprosy teoreticheskoy ekonomiki [Issues of Economic Theory], 2 (3), 47–57. https://doi.org/10.24411/2587-7666-2018-00018 (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A. V. (2021). Price crises in Soviet Economy 1920s and institutional effects of the fundamental impossibility of socialism. Journal of Institutional Studies, 13 (2), 68–81. https://doi.org/10.17835/2076-6297.2021.13.2.068-081 (In Russ.)

Kavaliou, A.V. (2023). Theoretical analysis of socialism: Mises vs. Brutskus (to the centenary of the publications of books). Journal of Institutional Studies, 15 (1), 34–42. http://dx.doi.org/10.17835/2076-6297.2023.15.1.034-042 (In Russ.)

Klausinger, H. (2015). Hans Mayer, Last Knight of the Austrian School, Vienna Branch. History of Political Economy, 47 (2), 271–305.

Kozerskaya, N. S. (1995). Na trudnom puti vozrozhdeniya rossiyskoy ekonomicheskoy nauki [On the difficult path of the revival of economic science]. U istokov podlinnoy ekonomicheskoy nauki [At the origins of genuine economic science] (pp. 71- 225). Moscow, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Lange, O. (1939). On the Economic Theory of Socialism. In B. E. Lippincont (Ed.), On the Economic Theory of Socialism (pp. 57–143). New York: Augustus M. Kelley.

Machlup, F. (1981). Ludwig von Mises: A Scholar Who Would Not Compromise. Hillsdale, MI: Hillsdale College. https://mises.org/library/ludwig-von-mises-scholar-who-would-not-compromise

Menger, C. (1909). Geld. In F. A. Hayek (Ed.), The collected works of Carl Menger. Vol. IV
(pp. 1–124).

Menger, C. (2005). Carl Menger’s “Money as Measure of Value”. History of Political Economy, 37 (2), 245–261. https://doi.org/10.1215/00182702-37-2-245

Menger, C. (2005). Osnovaniya politicheskoy ekonomii [Principles of Economics]. Izbranne raboty [Selected works] (pp. 59–286). Moscow, Russia: Territoriya Budushchego Publ. (In Russ.)

Mises, L. (1994). Sotsializm [Socialism]. Мoscow, Russia: Catallaxy, 416. (In Russ.)

Nenovsky, N., & Penchev, P. (2019). Russko-avstriyskaya shkola v ekonomicheskoy teorii Bolgarii: Semen Demostenov i Naum Dolinski [Russo-Austrian school in economic theory in Bulgaria: Semyon Demostenov and Naum Dolinsky]. Istoki: Ekonomika: “mrachnaya nauka”? [The Origins: Economics — “the Dismal Science”?] (pp. 375–443). Мoscow, Russia: HSE Publishing House. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1995b). Uroven’ tsen i tsenove otnosheniya [Price Level and relations]. U istokov podlinnoj ekonomicheskoj nauki [At the origins of true economic science] (pp. 50–60). Moscow, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1923). Zolotoe ischislenie bez zolotoy valyuty (Tverdye izmeriteli tsennosti pri padayushchey valyute) [Gold calculation without gold currency (Stable Measures of Value under a Falling Currency)]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 34, 2–14. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924a). Prof. Fal’kner S. A. Problemy teorii i praktiki emissionnogo khozyaystva (retsenziya) [Proffessor Falkner. The theoretical and practical problems of issuing economy (review)]. Hoziajstvo Severo-Zapadnogo kraja [The Economy of North-Western Region], 3, 170–171. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924b). Khod denezhnoy reformy [The Process of Monetary Reform]. Khozyaystvo Severo-Zapadnogo kraya [The Economy of North-Western Region], 5–6, 27–45. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924c). O tsennostnom uchete na zheleznykh dorogakh pri padayushchey valyute [About monetary calculation on railway under depreciating currency]. Vestnik putey soobshcheniya [Bulletin of Railway Transport], 38, 1–4. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924d). Predely inflyatsii [The Limits of Inflation]. In V. M. Stein (Ed.), Finansy i denezhnoe obrashchenie v sovremennoy Rossii [Finance and Cash Circulation in Contemporary Russia] (pp. 83–121). Leningrad, Moscow, the USSR: Petrograd. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924e). Politika tsen, emissionne potrebnosti i emissionne vozmozhnosti [Price policy, emission necessities and emission abilities]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 11, 79–86. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924f). Tseny i gosudarstvennoe regulirovanie [Prices and government regulation]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 12, 31–47. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1924g). Opyt proshlogo po regulirovaniyu bumazhnoy valyuty [Past experience in the regulation of paper currency]. Ekonomicheskoe obozrenie [Economic Review], 12, 1–12. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1925a). Nedostatok kapitalov [The Deficit of capital]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 2, 3–18. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1925b). Problemy kreditnoy emissii [The Problems of credit emission]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 4, 29–45. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1926). Nedostatok tovarov [The Deficit of commodities]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 2, 75–96. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1928a). Osnovne printsipy denezhno-kreditnoy politiki [Basic principles of monetary policy]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 3, 40–51. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1928b). Proekt regulirovaniya kapitalisticheskoy konʼyunktury [The project of regulation of capitalist conjuncture]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 11, 142–145. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1929). Novaya kniga Irvinga Fishera [The new book of Irving Fisher]. Vestnik Finansov [Bulletin of Finance], 4, 181–185. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1939). Metody soizmereniya narodnokhozyaystvennoy effektivnocti proektnykh variantov [Methods of commensuration of national economic efficiency of planned and design variants]. Trudy Leningradskogo industrial’nogo instituta [Transactions of the Leningrad Industrial Institute], 4, 1–23. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1972). Problemy izmereniya zatrat i rezul’tatov pri optimal’nom planirovanii [Problems of cost benefit analysis in optimal planning]. Moscow, Russia: Nauka, 433. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1995). U istokov podlinnoy ekonomicheskoy nauki [At the origins of genuine economic science]. Moscow, Russia: Nauka, 234. (In Russ.)

Novozhilov, V. V. (1995a). Ocherk [Essay]. U istokov podlinnoy ekonomicheskoy nauki [At the origins of true economic science] (pp. 17–49). Moscow, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Okrepilov, V. V. (2012). The creative commonwealth of L. V. Kantorovich and V. V. Novozhilov for formation of economic-mathematical direction in a domestic science and practice. Ekonomika i upravlenie [Economics and Management], 2 (76), 6–10. (In Russ.)

Okrepilov, V. V. (Ed.) (2011). Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov — vydayushchiysya uchenyy i pedagog [Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov — outstanding scientist and pedagogue]. Collected papers. Saint Petersburg, Russia: Nauka, 232. (In Russ.)

Petrakov, N. Y., & Kozerskaya, N. S. (2009). Neizvestnyy Novozhilov [Unknown Novozhilov]. Moscow, Russia: Nauka, 189. (In Russ.)

Petrakov, N. Ya. (1995). Preface. U istokov podlinnoy ekonomicheskoy nauki [At the origins of true economic science] (pp. 3–14). Moscow, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Shanin, L. (1928). Voprosy finansovogo rezhima [The questions of financial regime]. Planovoe Khozyaystvo [Planning Economy], 10, 41–64. (In Russ.).

Snowdon, B., & Vane, H. R. (2002). Modern macroeconomics and its evolution from a monetarist perspective: An interview with Professor Milton Friedman. Ekovest [Ecowest], 2 (4), 520–557. (In Russ.)

Vatnik, P. A. (1992). Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov. Ekonomicheskaya shkola [The School of Economics], 2 (2), 7–14. (In Russ.)

Voblyy, K. G. (1918). Nachal’nyy kurs politicheskoy ekonomii (istoriya, teoriya i finansy) [Elementary course of political economy (history, theory, finance)]. Kyiv, Ukraine: Progress, 252. (In Russ.)

Vorontsovsky, A. V., & Dmitriev, A. L. (2011). V. V. Novozhilov i ekonomiko-matematicheskoe napravlenie v Leningradskom Gosudarstvennom universitete [V.V. Novozhilov and the economics and mathematics direction at Leningrad State University]. In Okrepilov V. V. (Ed.), Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov — vydayushchiysya uchenyy i pedagog [Viktor Valentinovich Novozhilov — outstanding scientist and pedagogue] (pp. 105–125). Collected papers. Saint Petersburg, Russia: Nauka. (In Russ.)

Wieser, F. (1893). Natural Value. New York: Macmillan.