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Calls for Papers

Subsidiarity, Freedom, and the Logic of Gift in Business

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Call for Papers: Subsidiarity, Freedom, and the Logic of Gift in Business.
Guest Editors:
Martin Schlag, University of St. Thomas, USA, (main contact) Michael Naughton, University of St. Thomas, USA,
Marta Rocchi, Dublin City University, Ireland,

Submission deadline: October 1, 2022

In general terms, according to the principle of subsidiarity, higher entities should not replace smaller entities in fulfilling their tasks unless the smaller entities are unable to do so. Each person and each group should be empowered to develop their own gifts in moral responsibility to their own calling and social relationships. As such, subsidiarity defends the personal freedom of individuals and of smaller groups against the power of collectives, while at the same time ensuring harmony and balance in society (Naughton, Buckeye, Goodpaster, & Maines, 2015). Under different names (e.g., self-determination, autonomy, and pro-socialness), the principle of subsidiarity has been the focus of scholarship in economics and the social sciences as well as business ethics and Catholic social thought. From a theoretical, practical, and critical perspective, studies have shown the importance of good organizational environments for human flourishing (e.g., Ryan & Deci, 2017). The problems of decentralization and autonomy are very much studied in organizational science, and that of reciprocity is well-researched in economics (e.g., Ostrom, 2019). Inspired by Catholic social thought, Stefano Zamagni and Luigino Bruni, have given new meaning to the Italian school of Civil Economy (Bruni & Zamagni, 2016). Its main tenet is that we need to overcome the old liberal dichotomy of state (with its logic of imposition) and market (with its logic of contract and commutative justice) by rediscovering civil society (with its logic of gift, reciprocity, fraternity, and gratuitousness). This Special Issue provides an opportunity for cross-pollination of many ideas from disparate disciplines. Contributions that bridge these fields are welcome.

Download the full call for papers here >