In Handbook of Virtue Ethics in Business and Management,

International Handbooks in Business Ethics 1-8.

Alejo José G. Sison (Editor), Gregory R. Beabout (Editor), Ignacio Ferrero (Editor)



The aim of this chapter is to introduce a theory of the firm based on the concept of the common good consistent with the moral and political philosophy of John Finnis. Using Finnis’ philosophy, it will provide a description of the nature of the firm first as a community of cooperative work geared toward the satisfaction of needs. However, such an account of the firm can be further developed. In fact, using Finnis’ interpretation of Aquinas’ moral philosophy, one can see human work as a virtue. In addition, the development of productive and cooperative organizations must be oriented toward the satisfaction of needs and the promotion of friendly human relations. In this sense, following Finnis’ definition, the firm’s common good could be defined as a community of cooperation, of virtuous work, and of friendship.