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Business ethics Chair receives $25,000 grant from Templeton Foundation

Loyola press release - October 8, 2007

(New Orleans)—Legendre-Soule Distinguished Chair in Business Ethics at Loyola University New Orleans, Nicholas Capaldi, Ph.D., has received a $25,000 grant from the John Templeton Foundation to write a book on America’s Spiritual Capital, to be completed January 2009.

Capaldi’s thesis is that the spiritual capital of any civilization is what accounts for its progress, that American civilization is rooted in Judeo-Christian heritage, and that the future of modernity, globalization, and America depend on the extent to which there is a reaffirmation of America’s spiritual capital. Capaldi’s book will aim to demonstrate that the Judeo-Christian heritage is the defining element in American culture and that the heritage needs to be reaffirmed for the sake of continued development. One key point will be the articulation of how Judeo-Christian spiritual capital has been the source of the spiritual quest of modernity, how that has evolved into globalization, and why America’s spiritual capital has been able to provide leadership for that quest.

Capaldi’s principal research and teaching interest is in public policy and its intersection with political science, philosophy, law, religion, and economics. He is a member of the editorial board of six journals and has served most recently as editor of Public Affairs Quarterly. He is an internationally recognized Hume scholar and a domestic public policy specialist on such issues as higher education, bioethics, business ethics, affirmative action, and immigration. Those students who have served as his research assistants have gone on to Vanderbilt University, The London School of Economics, Harvard University, Fordham University, Princeton University, Rice University, and Georgetown University. Capaldi is writing an intellectual biography of John Stuart Mill for Cambridge University Press. In addition, he is creator and editor of MasterWorks in the Western Tradition, a series of books on major thinkers.

The John Templeton Foundation supports programs that encourage character development efforts at colleges and universities through direct grants to higher education organizations and associations. The goal of the Foundation is to encourage colleges and universities to do as much as they can to reinforce the positive values instilled by parents, such as honesty, compassion, self-discipline, and respect. The initiative seeks to foster widespread conversations within the higher education community about character development and to inform college-bound students, parents, policy makers, and the general public about how colleges and universities, individually and collectively, are responding to this challenge.

For more information, please contact Nicholas Capaldi, Ph.D., at capaldi@loyno.edu or (504) 864-7957.