'A Moral Being is an Accountable Being': Adam Smith and the Ethical Foundations of Accountable Governance

68th Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, March 22-25, 2010, Palmer House Hotel, Chicago IL

20 Pages Posted: 6 May 2010 Last revised: 13 Jan 2015

Date Written: March 1, 2010

Abstract

In this paper I argue that among the "lost legacies" of Adam Smith's work was a perspective on human moralilty that warrants his consideration as the first modern theorist of accountable governance. I elaborate on my rationale for that claim after reviewing the particular writings in Smith’s principal work (in this case TMS rather than WN) which I believe establish his foundational role in such a theory and discussing the factors behind its “lost” status.

Keywords: Adam Smith, accountability, accountable governance, Theory of Moral Sentiments, Wealth of Nations

JEL Classification: B16, G38

Suggested Citation

Dubnick, Melvin, 'A Moral Being is an Accountable Being': Adam Smith and the Ethical Foundations of Accountable Governance (March 1, 2010). 68th Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, March 22-25, 2010, Palmer House Hotel, Chicago IL. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1600883 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1600883

Melvin Dubnick (Contact Author)

University of New Hampshire ( email )

20 Academic Way
Horton Hall
Durham, NH 03824
United States

HOME PAGE: http://mjdubnick.dubnick.net

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