Economics and Ethics

E309 — Fall 2018

John Stone
Wylie Hall 101
Days and Times
Tues. and Thurs. 11:15 a.m. -12:30 p.m.
Course Description

This course begins with a brief survey of major theories in moral philosophy that are particularly meaningful in the areas of economics and public policy. This primarily includes a discussion of utilitarianism, Kantianism, and social contract theory.

Once we develop this philosophical backdrop, we turn to issues in economics where ethics seem particularly relevant. For example, with regard to markets we can ask whether a market outcome is desirable, or whether the presence of the market harms or corrupts the thing being exchanged. Topics along these lines will include markets for healthcare services, price gouging following disasters, markets for human organs, and more.

Additional topics may include environmental policy, public education and school choice, free trade and globalization, poverty and inequality. Throughout these discussions, we will give some attention to critiques of economic methodologies that include, for example, the theory of rational choice and various forms of welfare analysis.


Interested in this course?

The full details of this course are available on the Office of the Registrar website.

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