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The philosophy of business considers the fundamental principles that underlie the formation and operation of a business enterprise; the nature and purpose of a business, and the moral obligations that pertain to it.
Business is the activity of making one's living or making money by producing or buying and selling products. Simply put, it is "any activity or enterprise entered into for profit. It does not mean it is a company, a corporation, partnership, or have any such formal organization, but it can range from a street peddler to General Motors."
Philipp Blom summarises the development and impact of business-centric ideas in society prior to the global financial crisis of 2008:
Philipp Blom is a historian, novelist, journalist and translator. He was born in Hamburg, Germany, grew up in Detmold, and studied in Vienna and Oxford. He holds a DPhil in Modern History from Oxford University. After living and working in London, Paris and Vienna he now lives in Los Angeles with his wife Veronica Buckley.
The financial crisis of 2007–2008, also known as the global financial crisis and the 2008 financial crisis, is considered by many economists to have been the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
[...] Friedrich von Hayek and Ludwig von Mises [...] were Europeans who had passed their formative years in the chaotic interwar years and whose conclusion was that state intervention and planned economies were hallmarks of dictatorship [...]. They believed that it was healthier to take ideology out of politics and base the workings of society on the objective, nonideological laws of the free market. [...] The Enlightenment cult of reason and of the common good was replaced by the concepts of rationalization and the maximization of profits, which were applied to a reevaluation of social institutions - infrastructure, schools, universities, prisons, health care, and so on - according to business-driven criteria of profitability and cost-effectiveness. Especially in the United States but also increasingly in Europe, we began to run our societies as businesses. Beginning in the late 1970s and gaining speed in the 1980s, this gospel changed and polarized our societies - but it also provided an umbrella of meaning and necessity under which we could hide from challenges from without as well as doubts from within. For many in the West, the idea of the market became their ideological home. Living in accordance with its guiding providence and iron laws created a sense of stability, of virtue even. But 2008 shattered this collective piety and made millions understand that they had been lied to [...].
Friedrich August von Hayek, often referred to by his initials F. A. Hayek, was an Anglo-Austrian economist and philosopher best known for his defence of classical liberalism. Hayek shared the 1974 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with Gunnar Myrdal for his "pioneering work in the theory of money and economic fluctuations and [...] penetrating analysis of the interdependence of economic, social and institutional phenomena". Hayek was also a major social theorist and political philosopher of the 20th century and his account of how changing prices communicate information that helps individuals co-ordinate their plans is widely regarded as an important achievement in economics, leading to his Nobel Prize.
Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises was an Austrian School economist, historian, and sociologist. Mises wrote and lectured extensively on behalf of classical liberalism. He is best known for his work on praxeology, a study of human choice and action.
In economics, a free market is a system in which the prices for goods and services are determined by the open market and by consumers. In a free market, the laws and forces of supply and demand are free from any intervention by a government or other authority and from all forms of economic privilege, monopolies and artificial scarcities. Proponents of the concept of free market contrast it with a regulated market in which a government intervenes in supply and demand through various methods such as tariffs used to restrict trade and to protect the local economy. In an idealized free-market economy, prices for goods and services are set freely by the forces of supply and demand and are allowed to reach their point of equilibrium without intervention by government policy.
The Austrian School is a heterodox school of economic thought that is based on methodological individualism—the concept that social phenomena result exclusively from the motivations and actions of individuals.
Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong conduct. The field of ethics, along with aesthetics, concerns matters of value, and thus comprises the branch of philosophy called axiology.
Normative ethics is the study of ethical action. It is the branch of philosophical ethics that investigates the set of questions that arise when considering how one ought to act, morally speaking.
Virtue is moral excellence. A virtue is a trait or quality that is deemed to be morally good and thus is valued as a foundation of principle and good moral being. Personal virtues are characteristics valued as promoting collective and individual greatness. In other words, it is a behavior that shows high moral standards. Doing what is right and avoiding what is wrong. The opposite of virtue is vice.
The Mises Institute, short name for Ludwig von Mises Institute for Austrian Economics, is a tax-exempt educative organization located in Auburn, Alabama, United States. It is named after Austrian School economist Ludwig von Mises (1881–1973), because it promotes teaching and research in the Austrian School of economics and Misesian views on social and political philosophy.
This Index of ethics articles puts articles relevant to well-known ethical debates and decisions in one place - including practical problems long known in philosophy, and the more abstract subjects in law, politics, and some professions and sciences. It lists also those core concepts essential to understanding ethics as applied in various religions, some movements derived from religions, and religions discussed as if they were a theory of ethics making no special claim to divine status.
Ethics involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong behavior. A central aspect of ethics is "the good life", the life worth living or life that is simply satisfying, which is held by many philosophers to be more important than traditional moral conduct.
Alasdair Chalmers MacIntyre is a Scottish philosopher, primarily known for his contribution to moral and political philosophy, but also known for his work in history of philosophy and theology.
Tom Regan was an American philosopher who specialized in animal rights theory. He was professor emeritus of philosophy at North Carolina State University, where he had taught from 1967 until his retirement in 2001.
Criticism of socialism refers to any critique of socialist models of economic organization and their feasibility as well as the political and social implications of adopting such a system. Some criticisms are not directed toward socialism as a system, but rather toward the socialist movement, parties or existing states. Some critics consider socialism to be a purely theoretical concept that should be criticized on theoretical grounds while others hold that certain historical examples exist and that they can be criticized on practical grounds. Because there are many models of socialism, most critiques are focused on a specific type of socialism and the experience of Soviet-type economies that may not apply to all forms of socialism as different models of socialism conflict with each other over questions of property ownership, economic coordination and how socialism is to be achieved. Critics of specific models of socialism might be advocates of a different type of socialism.
Tibor Richard Machan was a Hungarian-American philosopher. A professor emeritus in the department of philosophy at Auburn University, Machan held the R. C. Hoiles Chair of Business Ethics and Free Enterprise at the Argyros School of Business & Economics at Chapman University in Orange, California until 31 December 2014.
Jesús Huerta de Soto Ballester is a Spanish economist of the Austrian School. He is a professor in the Department of Applied Economics at King Juan Carlos University of Madrid, Spain and a Senior Fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
James R. Otteson is an American philosopher and political economist. He is the Thomas W. Smith Presidential Chair in Business Ethics, Professor of Economics, and executive director of the Eudaimonia Institute at Wake Forest University. He is also a Senior Scholar at The Fund for American Studies in Washington, D.C., a Research Professor in the Center for the Philosophy of Freedom and in the Philosophy Department at the University of Arizona, a Visitor of Ralston College, a Research Fellow for the Independent Institute in California, a director of Ethics and Economics Education of New England, and a Senior Scholar at the Fraser Institute. He has taught previously at Yeshiva University, New York University, Georgetown University, and the University of Alabama.
In American politics, fusionism is the philosophical and political combination or "fusion" of traditionalist and social conservatism with political and economic right-libertarianism. The philosophy is most closely associated with Frank Meyer.
Libertarian conservatism, or conservative libertarianism, is a political philosophy and ideology that combines right-libertarian politics and conservative values. Libertarian conservatism advocates the greatest possible economic liberty and the least possible government regulation of social life, mirroring laissez-faire liberalism, but harnesses this to a belief in a more traditional and conservative social philosophy emphasizing authority and duty. Libertarian conservatism prioritizes liberty, promoting free expression, freedom of choice and laissez-faire capitalism to achieve socially and culturally conservative ends and rejects liberal social engineering. Libertarian conservatism can also be understood as promoting civil society through conservative institutions and authority—such as family, country, religion and education—in the libertarian quest to reduce state power.
Consequentialist libertarianism refers to the libertarian position that is supportive of a free market and strong private property rights only on the grounds that they bring about favorable consequences, such as prosperity or efficiency.
Role ethics is an ethical theory based on family roles. Unlike virtue ethics, role ethics is not individualistic. Morality is derived from a person's relationship with their community. The ethics of Confucianism is an example of role ethics.
Norman Patrick Barry was an English political philosopher best known as an exponent of classical liberalism. For much of his career he was a professor of social and political theory at the University of Buckingham.
Jörg Guido Hülsmann is a German-born economist of the Austrian School of economics who studies issues related to money, banking, monetary policy, macroeconomics, and financial markets. Hülsmann is professor of economics at the University of Angers’ School of Law, Economics, and Management.
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.
David Gauthier is a Canadian-American philosopher best known for his neo-Hobbesian social contract (contractarian) theory of morality, as developed in his 1986 book Morals by Agreement.
[...] Friedrich von Hayek and Ludwig von Mises [...] were Europeans who had passed their formative years in the chaotic interwar years and whose conclusion was that state intervention and planned economies were hallmarks of dictatorship [...]. They believed that it was healthier to take ideology out of politics and base the workings of society on the objective, nonideological laws of the free market. [...] The Enlightenment cult of reason and of the common good was replaced by the concepts of rationalization and the maximization of profits, which were applied to a reevaluation of social institutions - infrastructure, schools, universities, prisons, health care, and so on - according to business-driven criteria of profitability and cost-effectiveness. Especially in the United States but also increasingly in Europe, we began to run our societies as businesses. Beginning in the late 1970s and gaining speed in the 1980s, this gospel changed and polarized our societies - but it also provided an unmbrella of meaning and necessity under which we could hide from challenges from without as well as doubts from within. For many in the West, the idea of the market became their ideological home. Living in accordance with its guiding providence and iron laws created a sense of stability, of virtue even. But 2008 shattered this collective piety and made millions understand that they had been lied to [...].