Ethics & Trust in Finance 9th Global Prize

Every two years, the Prize invites young professionals and academics to participate and contribute to the reflection on the importance of the benefits of a more ethical approach to banking and finance, promoting greater awareness of the need for ethics, integrity and trust in the finance sector. Since 2006, the competition has prompted a debate about many different aspects of Ethics in Finance, ranging from the role of compliance offices, ethical investment and corporate social responsibility, the contribution of micro-finance to economic development, scandals and the persistence of financial misconduct, the ethical significance of fintech and the digital transformation of finance and the transition to a more sustainable financial system, to name but a few.

Candidates are invited to submit papers that have not been previously published, examining the role of ethics and integrity in finance from many possible practical angles and disciplinary perspectives. The papers could be analytical in character or they could be proposals for practical projects. In all cases, they should meet three criteria: intellectual rigour, innovative ideas, and clear conclusions. Best papers submitted in previous editions are available in this site. The Prize aims to encourage and promote:

  • awareness of the fundamental role of ethics in the world of finance;
  • precise identification of ethical issues in financial activities and institutions, in both the public and private sectors;
  • proposals for implementation of initiatives and projects concerning teaching and regulating for ethics in finance;
  • understanding of the role of ethics to support a more sustainable financial system.

The deadline to submit your final paper for the 9th edition is set to 29 of May 2023.

For more information, please refer to https://www.ethicsinfinance.org/2022-2023-9th/

Junior Positions in Economic and/or Environmental Ethics

The University of Gothenburg, Sweden, is looking to hire one PhD candidate (4 years), as well as one or more post docs (2 years), in the intersection of economic and environmental ethics. All positions are fully funded and provide a competitive salary as well as other benefits.

Economic ethics is the application of moral or political philosophy to critical issues in business organizations or the economic system. Environmental ethics is the application of moral or political philosophy to critical issues in the relationship between humans and non-human environmental systems. The research area should be understood broadly so as to include subtopics like business ethics, the political philosophy of financial markets, ethics of commodification, ethics of climate change, ethics of biodiversity, environmental philosophy and the philosophy of (environmental) economics. Any applications related to these subfields are welcome.

Potential research questions in these fields include the following:

  • What moral duties, if any, do commercial firms have to mitigate climate change?
  • Do consumers have a duty to invest in sustainable firms?
  • Is sustainability an irreducible moral value?
  • Can environmental values (such as biodiversity) be expressed in monetary terms?
  • Do advantaged nations have duties to promote sustainability in vulnerable nations?
  • Is the state justified in coercing financial markets towards sustainability?

The researchers will join the Financial Ethics Research Group which consists of philosophers and economists dedicated to ethical and political issues raised by the financial system (in the broadest sense). More specifically, the positions are connected to the research program Sustainable Finance Lab, which is a collaboration between several Swedish universities that is funded by Vinnova, Sweden’s innovation agency. Additional funding is due to the University of Gothenburg, the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation, and the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research (Mistra).

More information about the PhD candidate position: Job ad at University of Gothenburg (Deadline June 13, 2022)

More information about the post-doc position(s): Job ad at University of Gothenburg (Deadline May 31, 2022)

If you have questions, please contact: Professor Joakim Sandberg, project leader

Summer School on Time, Money and God

4 – 8 July 2022, University of Antwerp

The Antwerp Summer School for 2022 will focus on fundamental questions about our financial system on the nature of time, value and money. You get a stimulating engagement with key topics and thinkers at the intersection of philosophy, economics, ethics and theology.

Contemporary discussions on the ethics of finance and the prospects of more sustainable banking systems surface on regular occasions, not just at the edge of the financial system but also at its core. It is not just a Western concern as the rapid rise of Islamic banking proves. In its origin, many of these concerns with finance have a religious background, but today what might have seemed like unnecessary religious fetters in the secular world of finance have become general concerns because of the ongoing financial, economic and environmental crises. 

This summer school returns to the historical roots of the criticism of the financial system and looks at the usury debate from the contemporary perspective of banking and economic decision making on long term horizons. What can the contemporary debate learn from the moral and theological frameworks that were employed in the usury debate? The summer school offers an interdisciplinary program aimed at untangling the moral, economical, metaphysical and theological dimensions of that debate. Many of these arguments come back in the contemporary Islamic discussion on usury and play a strong part in discussions about things as diverse as nuclear energy, climate change and our relation to future generations. 

Speakers

Wim Decock: “Money, Time and Industry: Lessius and the Breakdown of the Scholastic Paradigm on Interest-Taking and Usury”

Philip Goodchild: “Credit and Debt: Between theology and economics” | “Finance as Salvation”

Bruno Colmant: “Melting money: the view from a physiocrat”

Sean Capener: “The So-Called ’Thief of Time’” |  “Money and Sophistry”

Imane Karich: “Theory and practice of Islamic finance”

Luc van Liedekerke: “The economics of time preference” | “Time-preference and climate change”

Michaël Bauwens: “Time, money and God: metaphysical investigations”

Target group

Master and PhD students in philosophy, economics or theology, but open to advanced Bachelor, Master and PhD students in these three or closely related fields like Islamic finance, sustainable finance and others. Participants should have at least completed two full years of undergraduate education (Bachelor level). 

For more information: https://www.uantwerpen.be/en/summer-winter-schools/time-money-god/

Workshop on the Ontology of Finance

Venue: Park 141, University at Buffalo (North Campus) & Zoom
Date: Saturday, May 7, 2022

This will be a hybrid meeting. Those intending to participate in person should contact Gloria Sansò <gsanso@buffalo.edu> before May 5. Zoom details will be posted later.

The workshop is funded by the International Social Ontology Society (ISOS) and by the Department of Philosophy, University at Buffalo

Program:

φ = speaker will be physically present

9:00 am Barry Smith: Introduction and welcome φ
9:15 am Achille Varzi: Derivatus Paradoxus φ
10:00 am Olivier Massin: Providing, exchanging, selling
Break
10:45 am Francesco Guala: Performativity rationalized
11:15 am Emiliano Ippoliti: What is a financial crisis
11:45 am Asya Passinsky: Cryptocurrency: commodity or credit?
Lunch
13:15 pm Samir Chopra: From artifact to agent: artificial agents and the law of legal agency φ
14:00 pm Gloria Sansò: Foundations for an ontology of finance φ
14:30 pm Christian Sprague: Towards a market ontology φ

Please consult the webpage for more information.

Postdoctoral Fellow in Economic and/or Environmental Ethics, one or several

The University of Gothenburg, Sweden, is looking to hire one or more 2-year post docs in the intersection of economic and environmental ethics. Economic ethics is the application of moral or political philosophy to critical issues in business organizations or the economic system. Environmental ethics is the application of moral or political philosophy to critical issues in the relationship between humans and non-human environmental systems. The research area should be understood broadly so as to include subtopics like business ethics, the political philosophy of financial markets, ethics of commodification, ethics of climate change, ethics of biodiversity, environmental philosophy and the philosophy of (environmental) economics. Any applications related to these subfields are welcome.

Potential research questions in these fields include the following:

  • What moral duties, if any, do commercial firms have to mitigate climate change?
  • Do consumers have a duty to invest in sustainable firms?
  • Is sustainability an irreducible moral value?
  • Can environmental values (such as biodiversity) be expressed in monetary terms?
  • Do advantaged nations have duties to promote sustainability in vulnerable nations?
  • Is the state justified in coercing financial markets towards sustainability?

The post doc will join the Financial Ethics Research Group which consists of philosophers and economists dedicated to ethical and political issues raised by the financial system (in the broadest sense). More specifically, the post doc will be connected to the research program Sustainable Finance Lab, which is a collaboration between several Swedish universities that is funded by Vinnova, Sweden’s innovation agency. Additional funding is due to the University of Gothenburg, the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation, and the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research (Mistra).

Applications must be received by: May 31, 2022

More information: Job ad at University of Gothenburg

If you have questions, please contact: Professor Joakim Sandberg, project leader

4th Workshop of the Ethics of Debt Network

Venue: Campus Brussels, University of Maastricht

Date: 14-15 July 2022

The Ethics of Debt Network brings together researchers from various disciplines working on the ethics of debt, money, and finance, broadly construed. We welcome contributions from any discipline and methodological perspective shedding light on normative questions related to household, commercial, and sovereign debt. We welcome both empirical studies raising normative questions, and normative studies engaging with empirical literature. We equally appreciate both ethical perspectives focusing on what particular actors in the credit system ought to do as well as perspectives from political philosophy analyzing/critiquing the principles, discourses and/or institutions concerning debt, money and finance.

The goal of the workshop is to give participants high-quality feedback on work-in-progress. We will have ample opportunity to reflect on shared research challenges and discuss cross-cutting themes. Paper drafts will be read by participants before the event to allow for in-depth discussions during the event. We are looking for papers at an early stage of development, ready for constructive feedback from a friendly, specialist audience.

Format
All participants are expected to read the work-in-progress papers in advance of the workshop. Speakers will set the stage for the discussion, but will not recap the content of the paper.

If you would like to present or attend, please complete our registration FORM. In the form, indicate that you would like to present and paste your abstract of up to 500 words until 4 April 2022. We will inform you shortly thereafter if your abstract has been accepted.

If you have any questions, please send us a message to ethicsofdebt@gmail.com.

Funds
Limited funds are available to cover travel and accommodation costs of speakers.

Acknowledgements
This workshop is funded by the York Maastricht Partnership Investment Fund.

Organizers
Aleksander Masternak, Graduate Student and Teaching Assistant, Department of Political Science, McGill University, aleksander.masternak@mail.mcgill.ca

Janosch Prinz, Assistant Professor in Social and Political Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Maastricht University, j.prinz@maastrichtuniversity.nl

Postdoc in project ‘Business corporations as political actors’

The application deadline is 1 February 2022.

Companies are being regulated by politics, but they also shape the political arena themselves, whenever they influence politicians and political parties. Moreover, companies fulfill public functions such as providing public goods, regulating their own business activities, or addressing societal problems, like environmental harms. Can such a mixture of private activity and public responsibility be legitimate, in a democratic society? Do traditionally state-oriented normative ideals such as democracy, social justice and human rights apply to them? These are central questions in the ERC-Consolidator Grant-project ‘The Business Corporation as a Political Actor’. For more information, please visit the project website.

The postdoc position will execute one of the subprojects within this larger project, namely the one on ‘Economic Theories of the Corporation’. This subproject seeks to integrate insights from prevailing economic theories of the firm into the debate about the political theory of corporations. For example, can economic theories account for corporate power? To what extent do economic constraints arising from market competition make it more difficult to render corporate political power legitimate? Since corporations are both economic and political actors, the subproject aims to understand whether and how these two sides can be integrated. This is crucial for the development of a sound political theory of corporations.

You will work under the supervision of the program leader, Rutger Claassen. You will be part of a research team consisting of two PhD-candidates and two postdoctoral researchers. You will play an active role in the research team, organize and take part in workshops, public events and other activities. The positions are based at the Ethics Institute, which is part of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies of Utrecht University, which provides a stimulating and internationally oriented research environment. The position starts at September 1st, 2022.

Qualifications

  • You have completed a PhD in philosophy or in a related field (or for Dutch applicants, a PhD dissertation in one of these fields has already been accepted by the PhD Committee), by the time the position takes effect (September 1st, 2022). Additional knowledge in a field relevant to the project (especially law, economics, political science, history, sociology or business/management studies) is a plus.
  • You are specialised in ethics and/or political philosophy, for example in the field of political authority/legitimacy, democratic theory and/or theories of justice.
  • You have an excellent track record and research skills, relative to experience; and excellent academic writing and presentation skills.
  • You have the ability to work both independently and as part of a team.
  • You have an active interest in interdisciplinary work which connects philosophical analysis to other relevant disciplines and societal challenges.

Offer

We offer a position of 0.8 FTE for 2 years. Initially the contract will be for one year. In case of good performance and a positive evaluation, the contract will be extended for the remaining period. The gross salary – depending on previous qualifications and experience  – ranges between €3,420 and €4,348 (scale 10 according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) per month for a full-time employment. 

Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% per year. In addition, Utrecht University offers excellent secondary conditions, including an attractive retirement scheme, (partly paid) parental leave and flexible employment conditions (multiple choice model). More information about working at Utrecht University can be found here

Apply

To apply, please upload the following documents:

(1) a one-page letter of motivation; followed by a one-page research note, setting out your ideas about how to work out the postdoc subproject (‘Economic theories of the Corporation’ see above).

(2) a curriculum vitae of maximum 3 pages, including the names and contact details of two scholars who can be contacted for a reference (NO reference letters at this stage).

(3) One writing sample of maximum 20 pages. 

Interviews are scheduled in the week of 21-25 February. Employment will become effective by 1 September 2022. Webversion of the job ad can be found here. To apply, please click here.

PhD position in Financial Economics (within a philosophy of economics-oriented project)

We run an interdisciplinary project “Values in Finance” that combines financial economics and the philosophy of economics at Erasmus University Rotterdam: https://www.eur.nl/en/research/erasmus-initiatives/dynamics-inclusive-prosperity/research-projects/values-finance

Within that project, we have a fully funded PhD position available, based in the Department of Finance at Rotterdam School of Management: https://www.erim.eur.nl/doctoral-programme/phd-in-management/phd-vacancies/values-in-finance/

The position would be an opportunity to work towards a PhD in financial economics at a top school, while also enjoying the context of an interdisciplinary research project that has a strong philosophy of economics component and enjoys close links to the “Erasmus Institute for Philosophy and Economics” (EIPE), an international stronghold of the philosophy of economics in the last 25 years.

Do note this is a PhD in financial economics (and not philosophy), so a strong quantitative background and interest are a must.

For more information, please contact Dr. Conrad Heilmann, heilmann@esphil.eur.nl

‘Finance, Law, and Sustainability: the EU sustainable finance action plan’

A Phinance Online Seminar by Boudewijn de Bruin on 25 November 2021, 17:00 CET

Open to the public. Zoom link: https://uniroma1.zoom.us/j/83148274093

Finance, law, and sustainability are more and more interconnected.
When law takes over, important questions must be asked. What is the power of legislation and litigation, and what legal instruments and tactics are appropriate? Boudewijn will zoom in on legislative initiatives around sustainable finance deriving from the Action Plan Financing Sustainable Growth published by the European Commission in 2018.

He will discuss the appropriateness of various instruments proposed in the Action Plan, using a reflexive law approach coupled with insights from behavioural economics and epistemology. He will point to the challenges such an approach encounters, and gesture at some tentative suggestions on how to address them.

This meeting of the Phinance Online Seminars will discuss Boudwjin’s view with contributions from Arnaud Van Caenegem (KU Leuven), Joakim Sandberg (University of Gothenburg), and Boudewijn himself, which will be followed by an open debate.

Financial Ethics Workshop – September 16-17

The Financial Ethics Research Group (University of Gothenburg, Sweden) is organizing its first “Financial Ethics Workshop” on September 16-17. See the detailed schedule below.

The workshop will be held on zoom. Registration is free but mandatory. Please send an email to <louis.larue.2@gu.se> no later than September 14.

Following the workshop, a planned book on the philosophy of money and finance, edited by Joakim Sandberg and Lisa Warenski, is due to be published by Oxford University Press.

Note: Time indicated below is UCT+2 (Central European Summer Time)

Thursday 16 SeptemberTitle
10h30 – Joakim Sandberg (University of Gothenburg )Welcome address.
11h Adrian Walsh (University of New England, Australia)Financial Ethics and the Moral Status of the Profit Motive
12h Lunch 
13h Boudewijn de Bruin (University of Groningen)Reflexive Law and Epistemic Virtues: The EU Sustainable Finance Action Plan
14h Richard Endörfer (University of Gothenburg)What precisely is Wrong with Banks Contributing to Financial Crises?
15h Break 
15h30 Lisa Warenski (CUNY)Epistemic Dimensions of Culture and Conduct
16h30 Aaron James (University of California, Irvine)Rawls, Lerner, and the Tax-and-Spend Booby Trap
Friday 17 September 
9h30 – Welcome 
10h Marco Meyer (University of Hamburg)Credit and Distributive Justice
11h Christopher J. Cowton (Huddersfield Business School)Truth in financial accounting
12h Lunch 
13h Clément Fontan (UCLouvain)Beating around the (green) bush: central banks in face of the environmental meltdown.
14h Joshua Preiss (Minnesota State University)Freedom and the Ends of Financial Market Reform