Table of Contents

The Challenges of Capitalism for Virtue Ethics and the Common Good

The Challenges of Capitalism for Virtue Ethics and the Common Good

Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Edited by Kleio Akrivou and Alejo José G Sison

The evolution of modern capitalist society is increasingly being marked by an undeniable and consistent tension between pure economic and ethical ways of valuing and acting. This book is a collaborative and cross-disciplinary contribution that challenges the assumptions of capitalist business and society. It ultimately reflects on how to restore benevolence, collaboration, wisdom and various forms of virtuous deliberation amongst all those who take part in the common good, drawing inspiration from European history and continental philosophical traditions on virtue.

Chapter 8: Corporate agency, character, purpose and the common good

Geoff Moore

Subjects: business and management, business ethics and trust, business leadership, corporate social responsibility


This chapter begins by offering a nuanced account of agency, and of its practical operation, at the corporate level. It then explores and seeks to justify the notion of corporate character, as operating in a similar manner to the way that character does within the lives of individuals, and hence of its singular importance if the potential for the good purpose of the firm is to be realized. Turning to the purpose of the firm, a MacIntyrean correction to the Aristotelian–Thomistic tradition as incorporated in Catholic Social Teaching is suggested. This revised understanding gives as much weight to the goods produced or services provided as it does to the intrinsic value of the work undertaken by practitioners. In sum, this chapter gives a rounded account of the characteristics and role of the firm and hence of its potential to contribute to the common good.

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