Five models of capitalism

Vol. 32 No. 1 (2012)

Jan-Mar / 2012
Published January 1, 2012

How to Cite

Bresser-Pereira, Luiz Carlos. 2012. “Five Models of Capitalism”. Brazilian Journal of Political Economy 32 (1):21-32.

Five models of capitalism

Luiz Carlos Bresser-Pereira
Emeritus professor of Getulio Vargas Foundation.
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 32 No. 1 (2012), Jan-Mar / 2012, Pages 21-32


Besides analyzing capitalist societies historically and thinking of them in terms of phases or stages, we may compare different models or varieties of capitalism. In this paper I survey the literature on this subject, and distinguish the classification that has a production or business approach from those that use a mainly political criterion. I identify five forms of capitalism: among the rich countries, the liberal democratic or Anglo-Saxon model, the social or European model, and the endogenous social integration or Japanese model; among developing countries, I distinguish the Asian developmental model from the liberal-dependent model that characterizes most other developing countries, including Brazil.

JEL Classification: O01; N01.

Keywords: capitalism models varieties of capitalism