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Book Talk: The Marshall Plan since 1947: Saving Europe, Rebuilding Austria.

  • Embassy of Austria 3524 International Court Northwest Washington, DC, 20008 United States (map)

The Austrian Lecture Series presents:

Book Talk: Günter Bischof/Hans Petschar. The Marshall Plan since 1947: Saving Europe, Rebuilding Austria. Vienna-New Orleans: Brandstätter - UNO Press 2017

Professor Günter Bischof
Professor Audrey Kurth Cronin (Discussant)

After George C. Marshall’s famous Harvard speech on June 5, 1947, announcing a European Recovery Program (ERP) to the world, Congress passed such a program in early April 1948 and ERP shipments started to flow to 16 Western European nations over the next four years. 

Austria was a “special case” in the ERP. Given Soviet participation in the four-power occupation of Austria after World War II, the Soviet zone of Austria was the only area in Europe that benefitted from the Marshall Plan. With its exposed geopolitical position, Austria was one of the top-recipients of Marshall Plan aid on a per capita basis. Next to these geopolitical Cold War aspects, this book is richly illustrated with 400 pictures and also covers the enormous PR effort in selling the Marshall Plan to the Austrian population.

The Marshall Plan is still “alive and well” today by way of the “ERP-Fund” started in 1962 with the left-over “counterpart funds” generated through the ERP. This fund is still investing some 500 million Euros into innovative projects in the Austrian economy annually.

Günter Bischof is the Marshall Plan Chair of History and Director of Center Austria at the University of New Orleans. He holds a PhD in American History from Harvard University. Author of many books, he co-edited three previous books on the Marshall Plan: with Charles S. Maier The Marshall Plan and Germany (Berg 1991), with Anton Pelinka The Marshall Plan in Austria (Transaction 1999), with Dieter Stiefel Images of the Marshall Plan in Europe (StudienVerlag 2009).

Audrey Kurth Cronin holds a PhD in International Relations from Oxford University and joined the faculty of American University’s School of International Service in August 2016. Her previous position was Director of the Center for Security Policy Studies, and Director of the International Security Program at George Mason University. Before that, she was a faculty member and director of the core course on War and Statecraft at the U.S. National War College (2007-2011). Professor Cronin’s career has combined academic positions and government service. She served as a specialist in Terrorism at the Congressional Research Service, advising Members of Congress in the aftermath of 9/11, and various positions in executive departments. She published her first book on the Austrian occupation: Great Power Politics and the Struggle over Austria, 1945-1955 (Cornell UP 1986).

Austrian wine and cheese will be offered after the talk.