The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Public Program: "Should Everything Be For Sale? Or Are There Moral Limits to Markets?"

16S Public Program Doug Irwin

This debate, co-sponsored by Dartmouth’s Political Economy Project, brought together two leading philosophers with opposing views on these thought-provoking questions: Jason Brennan and Debra Satz.

16S Public Program Doug Irwin

May 4th 2016, Professor Douglas Irwin moderated a debate titled “Should Everything Be For Sale? Or Are There Moral Limits to Markets?”

16S Public Program Doug Irwin

May 4th 2016, Professor Douglas Irwin moderated a debate titled “Should Everything Be For Sale? Or Are There Moral Limits to Markets?”

16S Public Program PEP

Public Program poster, "Should Everything Be For Sale? Or Are There Moral Limits to Markets?" designed by Sonia Robiner '16.

Article Type 

Markets are everywhere and provide us with food, clothing, computers, education, and so much more. But should everything be for sale? Are there limits to what should be commercialized? Should you be able to sell your vote or a kidney? Should childless couples be able to pay a surrogate to have a baby?

On Wednesday, May 4th 2016, Professor Douglas Irwin moderated a debate titled “Should Everything Be For Sale? Or Are There Moral Limits to Markets?” This debate, co-sponsored by Dartmouth’s Political Economy Project, brought together two leading philosophers with opposing views on these thought-provoking questions: Jason Brennan and Debra Satz.

Jason Brennan is Robert J. and Elizabeth Flanagan Family Chair and Associate Professor of Strategy, Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. He specializes in political philosophy and applied ethics, and authored Markets without Limits, with Peter Jaworkski (Routledge Press, 2015).

Debra Satz is Senior Associate Dean for the Humanities and Arts, Marta Sutton Weeks Professor of Ethics in Society, and Professor of Philosophy, and Professor, by courtesy, of Political Science, at Stanford University.  Her work has focused on the ethical limits of markets, and she authored Why Some Things Should Not Be For Sale: The Moral Limits of Markets (Oxford University Press, 2010).

Douglas Irwin is the John Sloan Dickey Third Century Professor in the Social Sciences in the Department of Economics at Dartmouth College.

Submitted by Devyn Greenberg ’17, Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant for Public Programs

The views and opinions expressed and any materials presented during a public program are the speaker’s own and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the Rockefeller Center or constitute an endorsement by the Center.

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