Wealth distribution based on classic sugarscape model leads to a population increase and the Gini coefficient decrease when cooperation and communication parameters are taken into account. In another study, this model was developed by implying a receipt of one-fifth of the assets of the population and derived utilization for poor people. The results showed a relation between mortality decrease, population increase, and Gini coefficient decrease (equality increase). In a synergic process, the wealthadjustment based on sugarscape model (...) underwent some experiments by implying communication and cooperation, and the mechanism of receiving and utilizing the assets. The results show that the population increase and the Gini coefficient decrease play an important role in wealthadjustment. (shrink)
This paper discusses the possibility of wealthadjustment through a credit network. The discussed credit network in this paper is a kind of loaning with no interest rate (its value is zero). It explains the influence of existence or inexistence of a cooperation originated from the credit network on wealth distribution and adjustment in an artificial society. To show how the wealth may distribute, environment agents in terms of their obtained wealth have been classified (...) into ten wealth categories; thus, the share of each category in terms of population has been determined. In addition, the survival of population in the environment has been studied. Findings and results show more balanced distribution of agents among the categories of wealth and higher survival of the population in the existence of the credit network. More over, the curve of population has fewer fluctuations. In other words, the population is more stable due to the ability of credit network in making more survival and stability in the population of environment in periods of time by providing the possibility of cooperation and wealth better distribution. (shrink)
The relationship between willingness to pay to reduce the probability of an adverse event and the degree of risk aversion is ambiguous. The ambiguity arises because paying for protection worsens the outcome in the event the adverse event occurs, which influences the expected marginal utility of wealth. Using the concept of downside risk aversion or prudence, we characterize the marginal WTP to reduce the probability of the adverse event as the product of WTP in the case of risk neutrality (...) and an adjustment factor. For the univariate case, the adjustment factor depends on risk aversion and prudence with respect to wealth. For the bivariate case, the adjustment factor depends on risk aversion and cross-prudence in wealth. (shrink)
The chapter explains why evolutionary genetics – a mathematical body of theory developed since the 1910s – eventually got to deal with culture: the frequency dynamics of genes like “the lactase gene” in populations cannot be correctly modeled without including social transmission. While the body of theory requires specific justifications, for example meticulous legitimations of describing culture in terms of traits, the body of theory is an immensely valuable scientific instrument, not only for its modeling power but also for the (...) amount of work that has been necessary to build, maintain, and expand it. A brief history of evolutionary genetics is told to demonstrate such patrimony, and to emphasize the importance and accumulation of statistical knowledge therein. The probabilistic nature of genotypes, phenogenotypes and population phenomena is also touched upon. Although evolutionary genetics is actually composed by distinct and partially independent traditions, the most important mathematical object of evolutionary genetics is the Mendelian space, and evolutionary genetics is mostly the daring study of trajectories of alleles in a population that explores that space. The ‘body’ is scientific wealth that can be invested in studying every situation that happens to turn out suitable to be modeled as a Mendelian population, or as a modified Mendelian population, or as a population of continuously varying individuals with an underlying Mendelian basis. Mathematical tinkering and justification are two halves of the mutual adjustment between the body of theory and the new domain of culture. Some works in current literature overstate justification, misrepresenting the relationship between body of theory and domain, and hindering interdisciplinary dialogue. (shrink)
This thoughtful new abridgment is enriched by the brilliant commentary which accompanies it. In it, Laurence Dickey argues that the _Wealth of Nations_ contains--and conceals--a great deal of how Smith actually thought a commercial society works. Guided by his conviction that the so-called Adam Smith Problem--the relationship between ethics and economics in Smith's thinking--is a core element in the argument of the work itself, Dickey's commentary focuses on the devices Smith uses to ground his economics in broadly ethical and social (...) categories. An unparalleled guide to an often difficult and perplexing work. (shrink)
Dozens of countries have established Sovereign Wealth Funds in the last decade or so, in the majority of cases employing those funds to manage the large revenues gained from selling resources such as oil and gas on a tide of rapidly rising commodity prices. These funds have raised a series of ethical questions, including just how the money contained in such funds should eventually be spent. This article engages with that question, and specifically seeks to connect debates on SWFs (...) with debates on global justice. Just how good are national claims to the great wealth contained in SWFs in the first place? Using the example of Norway's very large SWF – derived from selling North-Sea petroleum – I show that national claims are at least sometimes very weak, with the implication that the wealth in many such funds is ripe for redistribution in the interests of global justice. I conclude by offering some guidance for how the money contained in such funds could best be spent, with the goal of advancing global justice. (shrink)
Many scholars and managers endorse the idea that the primary purpose of the firm is to make money for its owners. This shareholder wealth maximization objective is justified on the grounds that it maximizes social welfare. In this article, the first of a two-part set, we argue that, although this shareholder primacy model may have been appropriate in an earlier era, it no longer is, given our current state of economic and social affairs. To make our case, we employ (...) a utilitarian moral standard and examine the apparent logical sequence behind the link between shareholder wealth maximization and social welfare. Upon close empirical and conceptual scrutiny, we find that utilitarian criteria do not support the shareholder model; that is, shareholder wealth maximization is only weakly linked to social welfare maximization. In view of the dubious validity of this sequential argument, we outline some of the features of a superior corporate objective—a variant of normative stakeholder theory. In the second article, we will advance and defend our preferred alternative and then discuss some institutional arrangements under which it could be implemented. (shrink)
I perform an economic and ethical analysis on wealth and income inequality. Economists have performed many statistical studies that reveal a number of, often contradictory, findings in connection with the distribution of wealth and income. Hence, the statistical findings leave us with no better knowledge of the effects that inequality has on economic progress. At the same time, the existing theoretical results have not provided us with a definitive answer concerning the effects of inequality on progress. By gaining (...) knowledge of the nature of inequality, and bringing basic economic principles to bear on the subject, we can come to an understanding of what the causal relationship is between inequality and economic progress. Furthermore, I apply a new theory of ethics – rational egoism – to assess economic inequality. I show that, in the right context, economic inequality is both economically and morally desirable. (shrink)
Wealth and Virtue reassesses the remarkable contribution of the Scottish Enlightenment to the formation of modern economics and to theories of capitalism. Its unique range indicates the scope of the Scottish intellectual achievement of the eighteenth century and explores the process by which the boundaries between economic thought, jurisprudence, moral philosophy and theoretical history came to be established. Dealing not only with major figures like Hume and Smith, there are also studies of lesser known thinkers like Andrew Fletcher, Gershom (...) Carmichael, Lord Kames and John Millar as well as of Locke in the light of eighteenth century social theory, the intellectual culture of the University of Edinburgh in the middle of the eighteenth century and of the performance of the Scottish economy on the eve of the publication of the Wealth of Nations. While the scholarly emphasis is on the rigorous historical reconstruction of both theory and context, Wealth and Virtue directly addresses itself to modern political theorists and economists and throws light on a number of major focal points of controversy in legal and political philosophy. (shrink)
The Wealth of Ideas, first published in 2005, traces the history of economic thought, from its prehistory to the present day. In this eloquently written, scientifically rigorous and well documented book, chapters on William Petty, Adam Smith, David Ricardo, Karl Marx, William Stanley Jevons, Carl Menger, Léon Walras, Alfred Marshall, John Maynard Keynes, Joseph Schumpeter and Piero Sraffa alternate with chapters on other important figures and on debates of the period. Economic thought is seen as developing between two opposite (...) poles: a subjective one, based on the ideas of scarcity and utility, and an objective one based on the notions of physical costs and surplus. Professor Roncaglia focuses on the different views of the economy and society and on their evolution over time and critically evaluates the foundations of the scarcity-utility approach in comparison with the Classical/Keynesian approach. (shrink)
This theoretical paper is offered in the spirit of advancing the debate on the socioemotional wealth construct and its impact on how family firms conceptualize and practise corporate social responsibility. The study builds on Kellermanns et al.’s :1175–1182, 2012) claim that the SEW dimensions can be positively and negatively valenced as well as makes a distinction between the selective and instrumental approach to CSR and the holistic and normative one. Drawing on these considerations, it provides a theoretical underpinning in (...) favour of the view that SEW has ambivalent nature and therefore can produce detrimental outcomes for stakeholders of family companies. In this way, the study challenges the implicit assumption prevalent in the literature that SEW is “a prosocial and positive stimulus”. Crucially, it expands on the SEW construct by arguing that, given its ambivalent nature, SEW, as such, is at odds with the “strategic, whole-business view of responsibility”. Consequently, it posits that family firms—because of their concern with SEW—may be more likely to adopt the instrumental and selective rather than strategic and normative approach. Hence, it also makes the case for regarding the latter as a reference point to investigate the family company’s attitude towards social responsibility. It concludes by summarising the argument and offering future research avenues. (shrink)
The primary objective of this article is to develop a framework for analyzing the ethical foundations and implications of shareholder wealth maximization (SWM). Distinctions between SWM and the more widely examined construct of profit maximization are identified, the most significant being the central role played in SWM by the market mechanism for pricing the corporation''s securities. It is argued that empirical tests concerned with evaluating the ethical implications of SWM will almost surely involve a joint hypothesis. A number of (...) recent empirical studies aimed at testing hypotheses with explicit ethical content are reviewed. (shrink)
In the last 30 years, China has experienced an astounding economic development that calls for a differentiated understanding of this complex process of wealth creation. In the first section of this article, I present a new concept of wealth creation that goes beyond making money, maximizing profit and adding value and serves as a framework to address the article's main topic.In the second section, I investigate in what ways and to what extent this new concept might apply to (...) China's economic reform and development, particularly in the 1980s and 1990s. In the third section, I attempt to draw a couple of lessons for development ethics in general. (shrink)
Care is at the heart of the Maori values system, which calls for humans to be kaitiaki, caretakers of the maun y the life-force, in each other and in nature. The relational Five Well-beings approach, based on four case studies of Maori businesses, demonstrates how business can create spiritual, cultural, social, environmental and economic well-being. A Well-beings approach entails praxis, which brings values and practice together with the purpose of consciously creating well-being and, in so doing, creates multi-dimensional wealth. (...) Underlying the Well-beings approach is an ethic of care and an intrinsic stakeholder view of business. (shrink)
This study conducted an empirical survey of 126 Business Ethics students in business and management departments within two universities across the Taiwan Strait to evaluate the impact on these managers-to-be of receiving an education in Business Ethics. The results show that, after receiving that Business Ethics education, students in both universities demonstrated significant improvements in the ethical weighting of their individual values, their recognition of ethical issues and their performance as ethical decision-makers. However, in respect of ethical decision-making, the behavior (...) of these students is still sub-optimal, indicating a need for further improvements in the ethical education of managers-to-be across the Taiwan Strait. (shrink)
Although trustworthiness has been described as a source of competitive advantage, its value extends to organizational governance and wealth creation. We identify the importance of the commitment—compliance continuum in the decision to trust and note that trustworthiness is a subjective perception viewed through each person's mediating lens. That lens and each person's interpretation of the social contract impact one's commitment to cooperate. We suggest five propositions that integrate trustworthiness, governance, and wealth creation.
Daniel Halliday examines the morality of the right to bequeath or transfer wealth, and argues that inheritance is unjust to the extent that it enhances the intergenerational replication of inequality, concentrating opportunities in certain groups. He presents an egalitarian case for imposition of a significant inheritance tax.
Adam Smith was a philosopher before he ever wrote about economics, yet until now there has never been a philosophical commentary on the Wealth of Nations . Samuel Fleischacker suggests that Smith's vastly influential treatise on economics can be better understood if placed in the light of his epistemology, philosophy of science, and moral theory. He lays out the relevance of these aspects of Smith's thought to specific themes in the Wealth of Nations , arguing, among other things, (...) that Smith regards social science as an extension of common sense rather than as a discipline to be approached mathematically, that he has moral as well as pragmatic reasons for approving of capitalism, and that he has an unusually strong belief in human equality that leads him to anticipate, if not quite endorse, the modern doctrine of distributive justice. Fleischacker also places Smith's views in relation to the work of his contemporaries, especially his teacher Francis Hutcheson and friend David Hume, and draws out consequences of Smith's thought for present-day political and philosophical debates. The Companion is divided into five general sections, which can be read independently of one another. It contains an index that points to commentary on specific passages in Wealth of Nations . Written in an approachable style befitting Smith's own clear yet finely honed rhetoric, it is intended for professional philosophers and political economists as well as those coming to Smith for the first time. (shrink)
I argue that taxation for redistributive purposes is a property rights violation, responding to arguments (due to Nagel, Murphy, Sunstein, and Holmes) claiming that individuals lack ownership of their pretax incomes.
There has been much discussion of changing agricultural structure in the United States. In this paper, the author reviews some of the factors contributing to structural change in the United States and describes the policies adopted by the European Community with respect to agricultural structure. The European experience with structural policies suggests that this approach is not very promising for the United States where no specific structural policies exist. The argument developed in this paper is that structural changes in agriculture (...) are simply one example of economic adjustment in a capitalist economy, that economic adjustments are generally desirable although they are not costless, and that discussions of agricultural structure should focus on methods to alleviate the costs of adjustment rather than on efforts to prevent change. (shrink)
Moonlighting – the performance of more than one function by a single protein – is becoming recognized as a common phenomenon with important implications for systems biology and human health. The different functions of a moonlighting protein may use different regions of the protein structure, or alternative structures that occur due to post-translational modifications and/or differences in binding partners. Often the different functions of moonlighting proteins are used at different times or in different places. The existence of moonlighting functions complicates (...) efforts to under- stand metabolic and regulatory networks, as well as physiological and pathological processes in organisms. Because moonlighting functions can play important roles in disease processes, an improved understanding of moonlighting proteins will provide new opportunities for pharmacological manipulations that specifically target a function involved in pathology while sparing physiologically important functions. (shrink)
Because terms like “wealth” and “poverty” derive their meaning from the normative cultural values within which they occur, any application of New Testament texts which fails to take cultural differences seriously can only misrepresent those texts.
For over a century it has been believed that Alfred Russel Wallace and Henry Walter Bates set out for the Amazon in 1848 with the aim of “solving the problem of the origin of species”. Yet this enticing story is based on only one sentence. Bates claimed in the preface to his 1863 book that Wallace stated this was the aim of their expedition in an 1847 letter. Bates gave a quotation from the letter. But Wallace himself never endorsed or (...) repeated this story. Many writers have acknowledged that this letter still survives. Yet the wording is different from that quoted by Bates and the letter says nothing of an expedition. It is argued that the sentence given by Bates is not a genuine quotation from this or any other Wallace letter but was modified by Bates to promote his own reputation. More significantly, this leads to the conclusion that there was a very sudden and dramatic shift in the way species were thought of and discussed after Darwin’s Origin of species appeared. Something called “the problem of the origin of species” never occurred before Darwin’s book but exploded in frequency immediately after it. A profound change in how species origins were discussed happened which no one seemed to notice. (shrink)
Rare earth elements have become increasingly important because of their relative scarcity and worldwide increasing demand, as well as China’s quasi-monopoly of this market. REEs are virtually not substitutable, and they are essential for a variety of high-tech products and modern key technologies. This has raised serious concerns that China will misuse its dominant position to set export quotas in order to maximize its own profits at the expense of other rare earth user industries. In fact, export restrictions on REEs (...) were the catalyst for the U.S. to lodge a formal complaint against China in 2012 at the World Trade Organization. This paper analyzes possible wealth transfer effects by focusing on export quota announcements by China, and the share price reactions of Chinese REE suppliers, the U.S. REE users, and the rest of the world REE refiners. Overall, we find limited support for the view of a wealth transfer in connection with MOFCOM announcements only when disentangling events prior to and post the initiation of the WTO trial, consistent with the trial triggering changes to China’s REE policy and recent announcement to abolish quotas. We do find, however, that extreme REE price movements have a first-order effect on all companies in the REE industry consistent with recent market trends to enable hedging against REE price volatility. (shrink)
Donald Winch completes the intellectual history of political economy begun in Riches and Poverty. A major theme addressed in both volumes is the 'bitter argument between economists and human beings' provoked by Britain's industrial revolution. Winch takes the argument from Mill's contributions to the 'condition-of-England' debate in 1848 through to the work on economic wellbeing of Alfred Marshall. The writings of major figures of the period are examined in a sequence of interlinked essays that ends with consideration of the twentieth-century (...) fate of the debate between utilitarians and romantics in the hands of Leavis, Williams and Thompson. Donald Winch is one of Britain's most distinguished historians of ideas, and Wealth and Life brings to fruition a long-standing interest in the history of those intellectual pursuits that have shaped the understanding of Britain as an industrial society, and continue to influence cultural responses to the moral questions posed by economic life. (shrink)
The purpose of this article is to take a fresh look at the concept of wealth creation that is urgently needed, given the huge gap between the global importance of wealth creation and the attention paid to it. It is argued that its notion we encounter is often very simple (as in "making money") or extremely vague (as in "adding value"). In the first section "Need for a fresh look at the creation of wealth", the need for (...) a fresh look is highlighted by pointing to three concerns about globalization and the roles and responsibilities of corporations. In the second section "Conceptual clarifications: what is the creation of wealth?", a rich concept of wealth creation is developed that includes physical, financial, human, and social capital, encompasses private and public wealth, accounts for its production and distribution, recognizes its material and spiritual side, and places wealth in the time horizon of sustainability. Moreover, creating (wealth) as "making something new and better" is distinguished from possessing and acquiring, and different motivations required for wealth creation are explored. The third section "Challenges for business ethics" discusses several challenges of this rich concept for the understanding of business ethics. (shrink)
Irreplicability is framed as crisis, blamed on sloppy science motivated by perverse stimuli in research. Structural changes to the organization of science, targeting sloppy science (e.g., open data, pre‐registration), are proposed to prevent irreplicability. While there is an unquestionable link between sloppy science and failures to replicate/reproduce scientific studies, they are currently conflated. This position can be understood as a result of the erosion of the role of theory in science. The history, sociology, and philosophy of science reveal alternative explanations (...) for irreplicability to show it is part of proper, informative and valuable science. Irreplicability need not equate research waste. Sloppy science is the problem, also when results do replicate. Hence, the solution should focus on opposing sloppy research. (shrink)
This article argues that there is no sound basis for thinking that we have a general and strong duty to rectify disparities of wealth around the world, apart from the special case where some become wealthy by theft or fraud. The nearest thing we have to a rational morality for all has to be built on the interests of all, and they include substantial freedoms, but not substantial entitlements to others' assistance. It is also pointed out that the situation (...) of the world's poor is not that of victims of disasters, but simply of less-developed technology, which can be repaired by full and free trade relations with others. The true savior of the world's poor is the businessman, not the missionary. What we do need to do is strike down barriers to commerce, rather than requisition "aid.". (shrink)
The tragic crash of Air New Zealand's flight TE-901 into Mt. Erebus in Antarctica provides a fascinating case for the exploration of the notion of corporate moral responsibility. A principle of accountability that has Aristotelian roots and is significantly different from the usual strict intentional action principles is examined and defined. That principle maintains that a person can be held morally accountable for previous non-intentional behavior that has harmful effects if the person does not take corrective measures to adjust his (...) ways of behavior so as not to produce repetitions. This principle is then applied to the Mt. Erebus disaster. (shrink)