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The Crisis and Working Hours

Anno XXXIV, n. 149, marzo-aprile 1999
Centro Einaudi


Testo disponibile solo in lingua inglese.
In 1932 Giovanni Agnelli, chairman of FIAT, released an interview to United Press about the reduction in working hours and how it could help solve the economic crisis. The interview triggered discussion internationally, and also sparked a friendly exchange of ideas between Agnelli and Luigi Einaudi, editor of La Riforma Sociale. The two also briefly exchanged correspondence which Einaudi’s review decided to publish. Agnelli confirmed his belief that it was necessary to counter technical unemployment by reducing working hours. Einaudi denied that the technical cause of the economic crisis was the most important. Albeit agreeing that the reduction in working hours was the ultimate target, he suggested it would be unstable if applied on a generalised and compulsory basis. Here Biblioteca della Libertà offers its readers the chance to follow an old debate on a question that is still open.