10960 Contemporary Theories of Economic and Social Justice 1

Credits: 6 advanced level

Departmental affiliation: Social Sciences/Economics
Additional affiliation: Social Sciences/Management
Additional affiliation:  Social Sciences/Political Science and International Relations/Political Science

Admission requirements : 36 credits for previous courses, among them the combination of Introduction to Microeconomics and Introduction to Macroeconomics, or one of the following courses, Introduction to Sociology, Introduction to Political Thought, as well as meeting the English requirement and requirements for bibliographic instruction in the library.

Course development and author:  Prof. Aviad Heifetz (Study Guide)
Collaborating consultants: Prof. Elchanan Ben-Porath, Prof. Avner de-Shalit, Prof. Shmuel Nitzan, Dr. Shlomi Segall

The course focuses on theories of economic and social justice, which went through an invigorated process of development in the second half of the 20th century. The course presents a range of theories dealing with the different aspects of justice, including John Rawls's theory of justice as fairness, libertarianism, utilitarianism, the capabilities approach, the communitarian critique, theories of entitlement and desert, multiculturalism, global justice and feminist approaches to justice. By studying the different theories of justice, we examine which social, economic and political arrangements are necessary in order to create a civilized, just and ethical society. What are the criteria for the distribution of goods such as income, wealth, liberties, opportunities and obligations? What is the just act to be done amidst the diversity of current social, economic and political dilemmas, and why?

The teaching method for the course is based on the dialogical approach by which students are active partners in the learning process. This method is manifested in the workshop character of the academic tutorial sessions, presentation of some of the course assignments on the website for discussion by student colleagues and a bonus for active participation and contribution to academic tutorial sessions and the course website. All of the study materials are accessible from the course website, with emphases, explanations and internal links integrated therein for the purpose of enhancing connections between various learning materials.

Course goals
To broaden the extent of student intellectual development by enriching discourse on social and economic justice, equality and liberty.

1 The student may write a seminar paper for this course, although it is not a requirement.