Edited by Jennifer A. Baker and Mark D. White

'Economics and the Virtues' by Baker and White
Editions:Hardcover: £ 61.00
ISBN: 9780198701392
Pages: 288

The unique selling points of Economics and the Virtues:

  • Comprehensive and historical overview of economic thought
  • Introduction to the work of expert scholars working on subjects related to virtue and economics
  • Addresses questions that have been raised by popular commentators such as Thomas Piketty, Michael Sandel, and Alasdair MacIntyre
  • Unified themes through its focus on the relationship of virtue to economics
  • Accessible introduction to the issues that perplex economics and ethicists

While ethics has been an integral part of economics since the days of Adam Smith (if not Aristotle), many modern economists dismiss ethical concerns in favor of increasing formal mathematical and computational methods. But recent financial crises in the real world have reignited discussions of the importance of ethics to economics, including growing calls for a new approach to incorporating moral philosophy in economic theory, practice, and policy. Ironically, it is the ethics of virtue advocated by Aristotle and Adam Smith that may lead to the most promising way to developing an economics that emphasizes the virtues, character, and judgment of the agents it models.

In Economics and the Virtues, editors Jennifer A. Baker and Mark D. White have brought together fifteen leading scholars in economics and philosophy to offer fresh perspectives on integrating virtue into economics:

  1. The first section covers five major thinkers and schools in the virtue tradition, tracing historical connections and suggesting new areas of cooperation.
  2. The second section applies the ethics of virtue to modern economic theory, delving into its current practices and methodology to suggest areas for integration with moral philosophy.
  3. The third section addresses specific topics such as markets, profits, and justice in the context of virtue and vice, offering valuable applications of virtue to economics.

With insights that are novel as well as rooted in time-tested ethical thought, Economics and the Virtues will be of interest to economists, philosophers, and other scholars in the social sciences and humanities, as well as professionals and policymakers in the fields of economics and finance, and makes an invaluable contribution to the ongoing discussion over the role of ethics in economics.


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Relevant Links

Table of Contents of Economics and the Virtues

Links are to the chapter summaries / download links on Oxford Scholarship Online.

Part I: Approaches to Virtue and Economics

  1. Aristotelian Virtue Ethics and Economic Rationality (Christian Becker)
  2. The Epicureans on Happiness, Wealth, and the Deviant Craft of Property Management (Tim O'Keefe)
  3. Economic Good as Indifferent: The Stoics' Radical Approach (Jennifer A. Baker)
  4. Adam Smith on Virtue, Prosperity, and Justice (James Otteson)
  5. The Virtues of a Kantian Economics (Mark D. White)

Part II: Virtue and Economics in Theory

  1. On Virtue Economics (Michael Baurmann and Geoffrey Brennan)
  2. The Separation of Economics from Virtue: A Historical-Conceptual Introduction (Eric Schliesser)
  3. The Space Between Choice and Our Models of It: Practical Wisdom and Normative Economics (Andrew Yuengert)

Part III: Virtue and Economics in Practice

  1. Virtues of Productivity versus Technicist Rationality (Christine Swanton)
  2. Virtues as Social Capital (David C. Rose)
  3. Can Trust, Reciprocity, and Friendships Survive Contact with the Market? (Seung (Ginny) Choi and Virgil Storr)
  4. Do Markets Corrupt? (Jason Brennan)