The isolation of markets from culture has distorted businesses aims. Too many firms prioritize short-term perspectives over longer term economic and social purpose. This lack of social embeddedness fuels society’s distrust of business.


Virtue (Cont.)

Restoring business as a force for societal good will require companies to engage meaningfully with their supply chains, shareholders, communities and employees. This would restore positive employee and consumer engagement, benefiting all.

Fostering virtue in business and the economy alone is insufficient. The ethos of our institutions must also be restored. Recent years have witnessed a public service crisis in care, in prisons and in our schools, driving the fragmentation of our shared values. The need for a shared public good is most vital in our democratic institutions, which are facing an unprecedented breakdown in public confidence. Enabling our institutions to teach ‘objective goods,’ which support discernment of purpose and excellence in their members, is key to the generation of virtue.

Virtuous business and institutions require a core understanding of human virtue. We have allowed an economic view of humanity to pervade our morality. Achievement in education is defined by narrow standardized targets, and at work we excessively valorize financial status. Instead, we must inject meaning and dignity into the everyday life for all.  Both government and our intermediary institutions have the potential to make a fundamental impact. From family and community, through to schools, business, mutual associations, local government and faith communities, these institutions can enable individuals to achieve their potential and contribute to the common good.

Virtue Workstreams


Advisory Council