You are here: Home Knowledge Base Human Dignity, Common Good and Stewardship as Values for Economies
Symposium 2015

Human Dignity, Common Good and Stewardship as Values for Economies

The Challenge

A World Economic Forum (WEF) survey of 140,000 business people and policy-makers in 2009 found that 75% thought the world was not just facing an economic crisis but a values crisis as well.

What, then, are the values that should be guiding us? Are values always culturally determined, or are there some core or absolute values that can give us direction?

The WEF Global Agenda Council on Values has addressed these issues over many years and has determined that there are, indeed, some core values that most faiths and enlightened civilisations would subscribe to. These are: the concept of human dignity, encompassing human rights and responsibilities; the common good—the idea that all institutions should be pursuing the common good; and stewardship, both of the planet and of resources for future generations.

These three values are easy to subscribe to but if they are applied as the design principles of our economic system, we are led to some very challenging conclusions.

The goal of such an economic system would arguably be “the equitable distribution of scarce resources within planetary ecological limits to satisfy human needs and maximise human wellbeing”. Such a goal would require a transformational change in our economic system of at least the same magnitude as the two big shifts in western economies which took place in the twentieth century - first, to Keynesianism and then to various forms of neoliberalism. The next shift would be baswed on very different goals, measurement systems, incentives and institutional structures.

Our panel will explain these core values and their relationship to other values. We will then concentrate on their implications in the areas of economics, planetary environmental management, business, and banking. We will focus on solutions within these areas, giving practical examples and speaking from personal experience about both the difficulties and the benefits of seeking to live these values.

This session is organized by the New Economics Foundation.Please check out the tabs below for additional facts and information.

    Solutions

    Solution
    Symposium 2015

    Promoting the Values of Human Dignity and Common Good in the European Union

    Promoting the Values of Human Dignity and Common Good in the European Union

    Promoting the Values of Human Dignity and Common Good in the European Union

    Solution
    Symposium 2015

    Solutions and “Resolution”...

    Solutions and “Resolution”...

    Solutions and “Resolution”...