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Moral Capital in the Twenty-First Century

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  • Acs, Zoltan J.

    () (London School of Economics)

Abstract

This paper recasts Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century in light of Acs’ Why Philanthropy Matters: How the Wealthy Give and What It Means for Our Economic Well-Being. Philanthropy matters in this debate because, as moral capital, philanthropy offers an alternative solution to the Piketty conundrum, and it does so without relying exclusively on a wealth tax and government intervention. Moral capital over the centuries strengthened both capitalism and democracy by investing in opportunity (slavery, suffrage and civil rights), which in turn leads to long-term economic growth and greater equality. By focusing on university research—which is critical in promoting technological innovation, economic equality, and economic security—that creates a large, well-functioning middle class (The Economist, March 2015), moral capital represents the missing link in the theory of capitalism development.

Suggested Citation

  • Acs, Zoltan J., 2015. "Moral Capital in the Twenty-First Century," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 418, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:cesisp:0418
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    File URL: https://static.sys.kth.se/itm/wp/cesis/cesiswp418.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2015. "The Rise and Decline of General Laws of Capitalism," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 29(1), pages 3-28, Winter.
    2. Baumol, William J., 1996. "Entrepreneurship: Productive, unproductive, and destructive," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 3-22, January.
    3. Zoltan J. Acs & Pontus Braunerhjelm, 2004. "The Entrepreneurship-Philanthropy Nexus: Implication for Internationalization," Papers on Entrepreneurship, Growth and Public Policy 2004-23, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Entrepreneurship, Growth and Public Policy Group.
    4. Zoltan Acs & David Audretsch, 1990. "Innovation and Small Firms," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262011131, March.
    5. Matthew Rognlie, 2015. "Deciphering the Fall and Rise in the Net Capital Share: Accumulation or Scarcity?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 46(1 (Spring), pages 1-69.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    philanthropy; competition; education; opportunity; entrepreneurship; innovation; inequality; Piketty;

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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