There are four primary types of economic systems in the world: traditional, command, market and mixed. Each economy has its strengths and weaknesses, its sub-economies and tendencies, and, of course, a troubled history. Below we examine each system in turn and give ample attention to the attributes listed above. It’s important to understand how different parts of the world function economically, as the economy is one of the strongest forces when it comes to balancing political power, instigating war and delivering a high (or low) quality of life to the people it serves. Anyone interested in economics on a global level should check out this fantastic course on the crisis of capitalism and why the global economy is teetering on the verge of collapse. 1. Traditional Economic System
A traditional economic system is the best place to start because it is, quite literally, the most traditional and ancient type of economy in the world. There are certain elements of a traditional economy that those in more advanced economies, such as Mixed, would like to see return to prominence. Where Tradition Is Cherished: Traditional economies still produce products and services that are a direct result of their beliefs, customs, traditions, religions, etc. Vast portions of the world still function under a traditional economic system. These areas tend to be rural, second- or third-world, and closely tied to the land, usually through farming. However, there is an increasingly small population of nomadic peoples, and while their economies are certainly traditional, they often interact with other economies in order to sell, trade, barter, etc. Learn about the complexities of globalization and how it shapes economic relationships and affects cultures with this great class on the geography of globalization. Minimal Waste: Traditional economies would never, ever, in a million years see the type of profit or surplus that results from a market or mixed economy. In general, surplus is a rare thing. A third-world and/or indigenous country does not have the resources necessary (or if they do, they are controlled by wealthier economies, often by force), and in many cases any surplus is either distributed, wasted, or paid to some authority that has been given power. Advantages And Disadvantages: Certainly one of the most obvious advantages is that tradition and custom is preserved while it is virtually non-existant in market/mixed economies. There is also the fact that each member of a traditional economy has a more specific and pronounced role, and these societies are often very close-knit and socially satisfied. The main disadvantage is that traditional economies do not enjoy the things other economies take for granted: Western medicine, centralized utilities, technology, etc. But as anyone in America can attest, these things do not guarantee happiness, peace, social or, most ironically of all, economic stability. 2. Command Economic System
In terms of economic advancement, the command economic system is the next step up from a traditional economy. This by no means indicates that it is fairer or an exact improvement; there are many things fundamentally wrong with a command economy. Centralized Control: The most notable feature of a command economy is that a large part of the economic system is controlled by a centralized power; often, a federal government. This kind of economy tends to develop when a country finds itself in possession of a very large amount of valuable resource(s). The government then steps in and regulates the resource(s). Often the government will own everything involved in the industrial process, from the equipment to the facilities. Interested in earning CFA certification? Get all the training you need from this CFA Level 1 Economics curriculum. Supposed Advantages: You can see how this kind of economy would, over time, create unrest among the general population. But there are actually several potential advantages, as long as the...
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