July 3, 2014, by Suzanne
Bob Sugden and The Human Zoo
NIBS co-investigator Robert Sugden recently appeared on the BBC Radio 4 programme The Human Zoo (on which another NIBS co-investigator, Nick Chater, is a frequent contributor). Bob discussed the implications of competition and competitive environments with Elizabeth Anderson, the John Dewey Distinguished University Professor of Philosophy and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan.
Elizabeth has written extensively about ethics and economics, including the book Value in Ethics and Economics (1993). In the article “Reclaiming virtue ethics for economics” (Journal of Economic Perspectives 27(4): 141-64, 2013) Bob and his coauthor Luigino Bruni treated Elizabeth as an advocate of the view which they opposed, namely, that the market tends to corrupt virtue and that (by using the market as its model of social interaction) economics is complicit in this. As it turned out on the programme, Bob and Elizabeth’s viewpoints have more in common than it may originally have appeared.