Two Barriers to Moral Agency in Business

Andrew Yuengert, Seaver Professor of Social Science and Professor of Economics, Pepperdine University

  • Date Mar 11, 2016

In this talk Professor Yuengert will address two potential barriers to integrity in business. The first arises from the challenge of living in a culture in which the dominant mode of knowing is technical.  Technical knowledge is deceptively neutral; when important questions are framed in technical terms, a disconnect is created between morality and action.  The second barrier is the challenge of an economy in which markets rule, and in which the account of markets taught in college leaves little room for human agency.  In the perfectly competitive market of the blackboard, individuals are helpless, tossed about by market forces.  Both of these concepts taken too far can blind us to our moral obligations in business.

Andrew M. Yuengert is the 2015-16 Visiting Fellow in Religion and Public Life at the James Madison Program at Princeton. He is also the Blanche E. Seaver Professor of Social Science, and a Professor of Economics at Seaver College, Pepperdine University. Professor Yuengert holds a PhD in economics from Yale University (1990). He has taught economics at Pepperdine since 1994. Before coming to Pepperdine, he was a research economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Professor Yuengert has made research contributions in several fields: economic philosophy, Catholic Social Teaching, the empirical study of religion, labor economics, and finance. He is a former President of the Association of Christian Economists, and edited its journal, Faith & Economics. His most recent book is Approximating Prudence: Aristotelian Practical Wisdom and Economic Theories of Choice (Palgrave Macmillan 2012).


This is an invitation-only event. Please contact Kelly Hanlon if you're interested in attending this lecture.