833. J. M. Keynes to Harrod , 13 September 1938 [a]

[Replies to 828 , answered by 837 ]

Tilton, Firle, Lewes. #

13 September 1938

Dear Roy,

I will await Tinbergen's revised version; though, on looking up his book [1] again I have not been able to discover a vestige of a hint that it is about the subject which you tell me it is about. Nor, even if you persuade him to write an introduction telling us this is the subject, will it make it so. The very reasonable assumption that consequences succeed their causes in point of time does not make a theory into a time-lag theory.

If Tinbergen was a private research student, he would deserve every encouragement. It is certainly worth his while pursuing all this. But I think it very dangerous for a collection of responsible economists to give it any sort of imprimatur in its present stage.

Yours ever,


R. F. Harrod Esq., Christ Church, Oxford.

  1. 1. J. Tinbergen, "A Statistical Test of Business Cycles Theories" (1938) (later published as Statistical Testing of Business Cycles Theories, 1939).
    1. a. TLI with autograph correction, one page, in HP II-80. CcI in JMK CO/11/285. Printed in Keynes, Collected Writings, volume XIV, p. 304. Reproduced by kind permission of the Provost and Scholars, King's College, Cambridge.

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