ATR Home
The Anglican Theological Review Winter Issue Spring Issue Summer Issue Fall Issue

What is "the Good" of Business? Insights from the Work of Bernard Lonergan

Kenneth R. Melchin

Scholars and practitioners examining "the purpose of business" increasingly are drawing on theological resources for understanding the roles and responsibilities of business in economy and society. Recent coversations have centered around the shareholder, stakeholder, and common good models of the firm. This study draws on the work of Bernard Lonergan to offer two contributions to these conversations: (1) Understanding "the constitutive function of meaning" helps better assess how working life shapes us as persons and offers further argument in favor of an enhanced "common good" model fo the firm.(2) There are three very different "levels" of moral meaning that operate in business life, and this three-level framework can provide ethical guidance for the life and work of business. The author concludes that Lonergan's method of exploring our operations of meaning in business life offers resources for advancing these conversations and better situating ourselves in relation to these debates.

Anglican Theological Review • 1407 E. 60th Street • Chicago, IL 60637 • (773) 380-7046