Interdisciplinary academic work is inherently fraught, and the incentives in most scholarly environments tend to direct efforts toward greater specialization rather than to foster cross- and interdisciplinary collaboration and dialogue. With specialization of focus comes specialization of terminology, and the challenge of overcoming the technical jargon of another discipline is one of the key barriers to genuine interdisciplinary work. "Interdisciplinary Dialogue and Scarcity in Economic Terminology," Journal of Markets & Morality 23, no. 1 (2020): 131-137
This article explores the economic teachings of the Heidelberg Catechism, a key confessional document in the Reformed tradition, through the lens of historic Reformed commentary, particularly that of the Dutch theologian and statesman Abraham Kuyper (1837–1920). The Catechism’s teachings concerning the origin, essence, and nature of economic activity are captured in the themes of superabundance, stewardship, and sabbath. These themes are reflected in the Catechism’s explication of the fourth petition of the Lord’s Prayer, “Give us this day our daily bread” (Lord’s Day 50); the eighth commandment, “Do not steal” (Lord’s Day 42); and the fourth commandment, “Remember the Sabbath Day” (Lord’s Day 38). "Abraham Kuyper and the Economic Teachings of the Heidelberg Catechism," Journal of Markets & Morality 23, no. 2 (2020): 363-390
This contribution advances a critical examination of Smith’s thought in theological perspective, with a point of departure in a recent interpretation of the ‘invisible hand.’ We show that the concept of general providence has displaced traditional understandings of special providence in the way Smith presents God’s care for the world. Whereas in traditional Reformed theology providence functions within the framework of a qualitative difference between the two orders of God’s being and the order of creation, in Smith we encounter an ‘immanentized’ providentialism, in which these orders are collapsed into one. It is argued that an application of a particular version of the distinction between special and general providence to Smith’s thought obscures older classical theological categories and distinctions — most specifically the dialectic of divine power — and that a retrieval of these older categories provides a more helpful framework for contextualizing and understanding Smith’s own thought.
Literature has argued that income inequality crowds out trust. However, whether income inequality makes people less trusting depends on how they perceive income inequality within their personal social context and social cognition. In this paper we therefore conjecture that the relationship of income inequality to trust depends on how income inequality affects inequality of life satisfaction. If life satisfaction inequality is high, distrust is generated among the least happy. This will increase polarization and the risk of rebellion, thereby also affecting trust among the happier people. Thus, life satisfaction inequality may be an essential factor in the relationship between income inequality and trust. In previous literature, the potential mediating role of life satisfaction inequality in the relationship between income inequality and social trust has not yet received attention. We test our model by panel analysis on 25 OECD countries in the period 1990–2014. The panel analysis shows that income inequality increases life satisfaction inequality and that both income inequality and life satisfaction inequality have a significant negative impact on social trust. Mediation tests show complementary mediation: besides the direct negative effect of income inequality on trust, we find an indirect effect mediated by life satisfaction inequality. This indirect effect counts for 20% of the total effect of income inequality on trust. Our results imply that policy options for increasing trust are not limited to countering income inequality, but can also include policy measures that directly reduce inequality of life satisfaction.
The effect of economic freedom on firms’ environmental responsible management is still unconcluded. We conjecture that the effects are conditional on a firm’s internal motivation and use a large-scale survey to run an empirical test. The sample consists of 4338 small and medium-sized enterprises from twelve European countries. Distinguishing between intrinsic (environmental) and extrinsic (profit) internal motivations, we find clear support that the effects of economic freedom and intrinsic motivation on corporate environmental performance interact with each other. Our findings explain the ambiguous results of previous empirical studies at the aggregate level.
This article examines the moral status of wealth creation, particularly within its theological and religious contexts, across Reformed confessions from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. These confessional standards are a key source for the moral teaching of Reformed churches, and their treatments of the eighth commandment demonstrate a relatively nuanced and sophisticated view of wealth. Rather than simply denouncing wealth itself as intrinsically evil, these confessional standards, from a variety of national and ecclesial contexts, both on the European continent and Britain, provide a basis for viewing wealth creation as a moral good, even while warning against excess, temptation, and vices such as avarice and envy. This survey of the treatments of wealth from a diverse set of Reformed confessional standards provides a foundation for understanding a critical element in the formation of Reformed, and more broadly Protestant, economic ethics in the early-modern period.
Purpose Creativity and innovation are interrelated, and indeed often conflated, concepts. A corollary to this distinction is two different perspectives or types of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs. The purpose of this paper is to explore the distinction between creativity and innovation on the basis of their relationship to history and implications for understandings of entrepreneurship. Design/methodology/approach This paper is a theoretical exploration of entrepreneurship understood in relation to a proper distinction between creativity and innovation. Creativity and innovation differ from the perspective of their relationship to what has already happened in history vs the radical novelty of a particular discovery or invention. Findings Creativity can be understood as what human beings do in connection with the fundamental givenness of things. Innovation, on the other hand, can be best understood as a phenomenon related to the historical progress of humankind. Innovation is what human beings discover on the basis of what has already been discovered. Entrepreneurs can be seen as those who discover something radically new and hidden in the latent possibilities of reality and creation. Or entrepreneurs can be seen as those who develop new, and even epochal, discoveries primarily on the basis of the insights and discoveries of those who have come before them in history. Originality/value This paper provides a helpful conceptual distinction between creativity and innovation, and finds compatibility in these different perspectives. A holistic and comprehensive understanding of entrepreneurship embraces both its creative and innovative aspects, its metaphysical grounding as well as its historicity.
This paper investigates the theoretical and empirical relevance of motivation crowding theory for owner–managers' motivation towards sustainable development. Motivation crowding theory has argued that external pressures enforce (crowd in) moral motivation if these pressures are perceived as supportive. On the basis of this theory, we conjecture that a competitive environment that is characterized by a high intensity of competition on innovation will crowd in moral motivation towards sustainable development if owner–managers believe that environmental policy practices increase the innovative capability of their company. Test results on survey data filled out by 650 owner–managers support this hypothesis. These results imply that policy makers, who aim at stimulating innovation as well as sustainable development, should inform managers about the innovation‐enhancing effects of environmental policy practices.
Since Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century in 2014, scientific interest into the impact of income inequality on society has been on the rise. However, little is known about the mediating role of income inequality in the relationship between market institutions and subjective well-being. Using panel analysis on a sample of 21 OECD countries to test the effects of five different types of economic freedom on income inequality, we find that fiscal freedom, free trade and freedom from government regulation increase income inequality, whereas sound money decreases income inequality. Income inequality is found to have a negative effect on life satisfaction. Mediation tests show that income inequality mediates the influence of fiscal freedom, free trade and freedom from government regulation on life satisfaction.