Lerner never stayed at one institution long, serving on the faculties of nearly a dozen universities and accepting over 20 visiting appointments. Lerner was 62 when he was given a professorship at the University of California, Berkeley in 1965 and left after reaching mandatory retirement age six years later. During his time there, Lerner criticized the unrest caused by the student Free Speech Movement as a threat to academic freedom.
Although Lerner never received the Sveriges Riksbank's Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, he has been recognized as one of the greatest economists of his era. Fundamental economic "concepts, theorems and rules" were derived and/or furthered by Lerner's work throughout his academic career.
Lerner contributed to the idea of a social dividend by incorporating it into Oskar R. Lange's original model of socialism, where the social dividend would be distributed to each citizen as a lump-sum payment.
Lerner (1951) developed the concept of the NAIRU (before Friedman and Phelps). He termed it "low full employment" and contrasted it with "high full employment", the maximum employment achievable by implementing functional finance.
^Odekon, Mehmet (2011). Booms and Busts: An Encyclopedia of Economic History from the First Stock Market Crash of 1792 to the Current Global Economic Crisis. Armonk, NY: Sharpe. ISBN9780765682246.
^Colander, David (December 1984), "Was Keynes a Keynesian or a Lernerian?", Journal of Economic Literature, 22: 1571–79, argues for the influence of Lerner's interpretation Keynes in "textbook" Keynesianism.
^Scitovsky, Tibor (1984). "Lerner's Contribution to Economics". Journal of Economic Literature: 1547–1571. JSTOR2725381.
^Abba P. Lerner, 1938. "Theory and Practice in Socialist Economics". Review of Economic Studies, 6(1), pp. 71–75. • _____, 1934. "Economic Theory and Socialist Economy," Review of Economic Studies, 2(1), pp. 51–61. • _____, 1936. "A Note on Socialist Economics", Review of Economic Studies, 4(1), pp. 72–76. • _____, 1937. "Statics and Dynamics in Socialist Economics," Economic Journal, 47(186), pp. 253–270. • _____, 1944, The Economics of Control, Macmillan. (J.E. Meade article book-review extract.)
^Tadeusz Kowalik (2008), "Lange, Oskar Ryszard (1904–1965)," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, 2nd Edition. Abstract.
^Raaj Kumar Sah and Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1985. "Human Fallibility and Economic Organization", American Economic Review, 75(2), pp. 292–297.
^Who framed 'social dividend'?, by Van Tier, Walter. March 2002. USBIG Conference, CUNY.
^"What eventually became known as textbook Keynesian policies were in many ways Lerner's interpretations of Keynes's policies, especially those expounded in The Economics of Control (1944) and later in The Economics of Employment (1951)...Textbook expositions of Keynesian policy naturally gravitated to the black and white 'Lernerian' policy of Functional Finance rather than the grayer Keynesian policies. Thus, the vision that monetary and fiscal policy should be used as a balance wheel, which forms a key element in the textbook policy revolution, deserves to be called Lernerian rather than Keynesian." (Colander 1984, p. 1573)
^Abba P. Lerner, 1936. "The Symmetry Between Import and Export Taxes", Economica, N.S., 3(11), pp. 306–313.