The economics ( and economics from Greek οἶκος, oikos, " house"; νόμος, nomos "law" and the suffix - ική ) is the study of the economy ( economics). The economics examines the rational use of goods that are only limited available.


In German-speaking economics is usually in the areas of Business Administration ( Business Administration ) and Economics ( Economics, Political Economy ) divided. The corresponding professional title is an economist ( Economist ).

The economics examines the basic economic relationships and regularities in a society both in terms of individual economic units ( micro-economics ) as well as the overall economy ( macroeconomics ). The business economics deals with the economic relationships and regularities of individual companies and provides insights for company structures and processes.

To verify theoretical economic models empirically and analyze economic phenomena quantitatively, econometric methods are used.

To economics in a broader sense also includes interdisciplinary areas such as

  • Transport Economics,
  • Business Chemistry,
  • Business Ethics,
  • Economic Geography,
  • Economic history,
  • Economic computer science,
  • Industrial Engineering and Management,
  • Business Mathematics,
  • Business Education,
  • Economic philosophy,
  • Economic Psychology,
  • Business Law and
  • Economic Sociology.

The economics among the social sciences. Business and Economics aspects are also studied in other social science fields.

Historical development


The great thinkers of antiquity and the Middle Ages are considered ancestors of economics. Joseph Schumpeter wrote in his History of Economic Analysis, the development of the scientific study economic relationships already late scholastics ( in the 14th and 15th centuries ) to. However, the old European Economics differed in their basic conception greatly from today's perspective. Nicolaus Copernicus employed in the impact of inflation of the Peasants' War, with monetary theory. As an " early modern " (or " pre-classical " ) economists are classified the mercantilists and the physiocrats.

As the birth of economics in the form today understood as a research discipline with independent Theo team forming is often called the year 1758, in which the French physician Francois Quesnay his main work " Tableau économique " published. The date of publication 64 -year-old scholar understood the dependencies of money and goods flows as a cycle.

Also, the Scotsman Adam Smith is regarded as the founder of modern economics. He published in 1776 his book An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations and criticized there until then mostly prevailing mercantilism. His work was widely used in the UK and the USA great recognition and mediated for the first time the idea of ​​a new branch of science for the study of economic activity.

Since David Ricardo's Principles of Political Economy font and Taxation, the " deductive method " with a quantitative view prevailed. With this method, the dissemination social conditions were increasingly eliminated from the study of political economy; it sat at first a purely logical- mathematical understanding of market conditions by ( economics as a natural science ).

Under the impact of industrialization in the 19th century, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels developed the Marxist economic theory.

The Classical political economy was starting in the late 19th century, replaced by the neoclassical theory that characterizes the modern economics today.

Over several decades - until the 60s/70s of the 20th century - but dominated the publications of John Maynard Keynes the discussion.

Since the second half of the 20th century are increasingly gaining the ATTACHING to Smith ideas of economic liberalism distribution. As one of the most important economists of this direction applies Milton Friedman.

Business management

The Business Administration as a pure describing activities and their purposes in individual companies began in the 15th century in Italy. There, the double-entry bookkeeping was developed and published at the time also, for example, as a technique of Business Administration. After a period of decline in business administration and the displacement by the economics took its importance since the beginning of the 20th century again.