What’s the Point of Efficiency? On Heath’s Market Failures Approach

Business Ethics Quarterly 32 (4):1-25 (forthcoming)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This article reviews and criticizes Joseph Heath’s market failures approach (MFA) to business ethics. Our criticism is organized into three sections. First, we argue that, even under the ideal assumptions of perfect competition, when markets generate Pareto-efficient distributions, Heath’s approach does not rule out significant harms. Second, we show that, under nonideal conditions, the MFA is either too demanding, if efficiency is to be attained, or not sufficiently demanding, if the goal of Pareto efficiency is abandoned. Finally, we argue that Heath’s appeal to regulations and specific moral requirements as a remedy for market failures is unlikely to safeguard efficiency and exposes a number of general worries regarding the moral force of the MFA. We end this article with a constructive suggestion on how to adjust the MFA to avoid these problems while preserving its contractualist and Paretian spirit.

Similar books and articles

Is the “Point” of the Market Pareto or Kaldor-Hicks Efficiency?Heath Joseph - 2019 - Business Ethics Journal Review 7 (4):21-26.
Professionalism, Agency, and Market Failures.Hasko von Kriegstein - 2016 - Business Ethics Quarterly 26 (4):445-464.
Efficiency and Ethically Responsible Management.Jeffery Smith - 2018 - Journal of Business Ethics 150 (3):603-618.
A Market Failures Approach to Justice in Health.L. Chad Horne & Joseph Heath - 2022 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 21 (2):165-189.
Public Health, Public Goods, and Market Failure.L. Chad Horne - 2019 - Public Health Ethics 12 (3):287-292.

Analytics

Added to PP
2022-09-21

Downloads
68 (#174,189)

6 months
68 (#12,031)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Richard Endörfer
University of Gothenburg
Louis Larue
University of Gothenburg

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Morals by Agreement.David P. Gauthier - 1986 - Oxford University Press.
Morals by Agreement.David Copp - 1986 - Philosophical Review 98 (3):411-414.

View all 18 references / Add more references