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One of the leading economists on the Italian and International scene decides to take the field and ask the market to not only be a producer of wealth and ensure sustainable growth, but also help foster a more holistic form of human development that is against all forms of inequality.
Stefano Zamagni, who has been one of the most authoritative voices on the Italian economy for many years and who is recognised globally for his promotion of the principles of a "civil economy", is now addressing a crucial issue for modern society: inequality. Reminding us that inequality is not a fact of nature that should be accepted as something inevitable, he analyses the main factors responsible for this phenomenon, distinguishing the causes of a socio-political nature, those of an economic-financial nature and those that affect the cultural fabric of society, going on to suggest clear guidelines that emphasise the urgency in overcoming the individualistic-libertarian conception of human action. The challenge that we must face, argues Zamagni, is that of working with courage and intelligence to take the economic model that has been established over the last forty years and transform it from the inside: The market can no longer simply produce wealth and ensure sustainable growth, it must also be at the service of holistic human development, development that is capable of keeping three dimensions in harmony: material, socio-relational and spiritual.
There is nothing about capitalism that is irreversible: it is wrong to think we should only intervene on the side of opportunities, that is, on the side of resources and incentives, we must instead insist on hope, which is nourished by the creativity of political intelligence and the purity of civil passion. It is hope that spurs action and initiative, because he who is capable of hope is also capable of acting to overcome the paralysing apathy of existence.
Stefano Zamagni (Rimini, 1943) is professor of Political Economy at the University of Bologna. His books include: L’economia del bene comune (Città Nuova, 2007), Avarizia. La passione dell’avere (Il Mulino, 2009), Impresa responsabile e mercato civile (Il Mulino, 2013), L’economia civile (with Luigino Bruni, Il Mulino, 2015), Responsabili. Come civilizzare il mercato (Il Mulino, 2019).
Release date 2020
Dimensions cm 14 x 21,5