Ethics in Economics : An Introduction to Moral Frameworks
In Ethics in Economics, Jonathan B. Wight provides an overview of the role that ethical considerations play in economic
debates. Whereas much of the field tends to focus on welfare outcomes,
Wight calls for a deeper examination of the origin and evolution of our
moral norms. He argues that economic
life relies on three interrelated ethical systems: outcome-based, duty-
and rule-based, and virtue-based. Integrating contemporary theoretical
and applied research on ethics
within a historical framework, Wight provides a thorough and accessible
outline of all three schools, explaining how they fit or contrast with
welfare model. The book then uses these conceptual underpinnings to
examine a range of contemporary topics, such as the 2008 financial
crisis, the moral limits to markets, the findings of experimental economics, and the nature of economic
justice. Wight's analysis is guided by the innovative concept of
ethical pluralism—the recognition that each system has appropriate
applications, and that no one prevails. He makes the case that
considering a wider moral framework, rather than concentrating on
utility maximization, can lead to a richer understanding of human
behavior and better policy decisions. An incisive overview in a
blossoming area of interest within Economics, this book is ideal for undergraduates or uninitiated readers who seek an introduction to this topic.
Author:Wight, Jonathan B.
Stanford, California : Stanford Economics and Finance. 2015
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