2019 2(37) 3

Institutionalism as the Quintessence of Welfare Theory

Oleksandr Serdiuk 
PHD in Economic Sciences
Institute of Industrial Economics of the NAS of Ukraine, Kyiv
Iryna Petrova
PHD in Economic Sciences
Institute of Industrial Economics of the NAS of Ukraine, Kyiv

Citation Format
Serdiuk, O. S., Petrova, I. P. (2019). Institutionalism as the quintessence of welfare theory. Visnyk ekonomichnoi nauky Ukrainy, 2 (37), рр. 14-20. doi: https://doi.org/10.37405/1729-7206.2019.2(37).14-20


The article highlights the theoretical aspects of institutionalism as the quintessence of welfare theory. A characteristic feature of the evolution of the human race is a deep transformation of the mental worldview. Based on historical analysis, it was revealed that attempts to curb human nature led to the emergence of norms and rules that determined the nature of the interaction between members of society. Norms and rules, or institutions in the modern sense of the word, have changed the worldview of society, thereby forming an idea of the welfare. In pre-institutional times (primitive societies), human well-being was perceived exclusively in a materialistic context. With the emergence of the first mental constructions accepted by members of society as a moral imperative, wealth began to acquire spiritual attributes (responsibility, altruism, caring, etc.). The quintessential notions of welfare were moral imperatives. It was revealed that the genesis of moral imperatives was determined by the institutional environment of a particular society. As a result, societies appeared with a diversified understanding of well-being, which influenced the belief in justice and the effectiveness of existing models for streamlining public life. Three types of society are considered, where nationalistic, socialist and liberal moral imperatives dominated. It is determined that the balance between adherence to the ideas of individualism and collectivism has become a determining factor in the formation of the theory of welfare.

institutionalism, welfare, institutions, moral imperatives, mental constructions, society.


  1. Stiglitz J.E. (2009). Report by the Commissionon the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress. CMEPSP. September, 14. Retrieved from https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/documents/118025/118123/Fitoussi+Commission+report
  2. Shympeter Y.A. (1995). Kapitalizm, sotsializm i demokratiya [Capitalism, socialism and democracy]. Kyiv, Osnovy [in Ukrainian].
  3. Yurydychna entsyklopediya [Legal Encyclopedia] (2001). Yu.S. Shemshuchenko (Еds.). Kyiv, Ukrayinsʹka entsyklopediya im. M.P. Bazhana. Vol. 3 [in Ukrainian].
  4. Bentam I. (1998). Vvedeniye v osnova niyanravstvennosti i zakonodatel’stva [Introduction to the foundations of morality and legislation]. Moscow, ROSSPEN [in Russian].
  5. Smit A. (2018). Doslidzhennya propryrodu i prychyny bahatstva narodu [Research on the nature and causes of people’s wealth]. O. Vasylʹyev, M. Mezhevikina, A. Malivsʹkyy (Trans. from english). Kyiv, Nashformat [in Ukrainian].
  6. Walras L. (2008). Studies in Applied Economics. Routledge.
  7. Pigu A. (1985). Ekonomicheskay ateoriya blagosostoyaniya [Economic Theory of Welfare]. Moscow, Progress [in Russian].

Full Text (.pdf)