The Community of Advantage

By Robert Sugden,

Book cover of The Community of Advantage: A Behavioural Economist's Defence of the Market

Book description

The Community of Advantage asks how economists should do normative analysis. Normative analysis in economics has usually aimed at satisfying individuals' preferences. Its conclusions have supported a long- standing liberal tradition of economics that values economic freedom and views markets favourably. However, behavioural research shows that individuals' preferences, as revealed…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Community of Advantage as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

The Community of Advantage is an excellent exposition of how moral philosophy informs and is informed by economics.

The title itself is taken from a political philosopher: John Stuart Mill. There is one caveat: Sugden speaks of behavioral economics, and as such, takes a different approach to rational agency than neoclassical economics.

Individual agency is not moral, but it is not assumed to be rational either. The book, and Sugden’s work as a whole, is of special relevance for two reasons: 1) It links morality with self-interest. 2) It uses society to argue for morality in self-interest.

From Vangelis' list on economic morality.

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