The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Catholic Economic Thought

  • Pedro Teixeira
  • António Almodovar
Reference work entry


Although Catholic economics’ roots date back to the beginnings of Christianity, its emergence as a structured discourse developed later and slowly. The establishment of a distinctive Catholic approach to modern social and economic problems had to await a more extensive development of the market system and the emergence of political economy. The most prolific period for Catholic economic thought began in 1891 and continued until the end of the Second World War. In the second half of the twentieth century the church’s interest focused on the analysis of such themes as development, international aid and cooperation.


Capitalism Catholic economic thought Charitable contributions Class Concentration of wealth Economic freedom Exploitation Fair trade Foreign aid Just wage Natural law Poverty Redistribution of wealth Rerum Novarum Salamanca School Social justice Social responsibility Socialism Solidarity Subsidiarity Usury 

JEL Classifications

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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pedro Teixeira
    • 1
  • António Almodovar
    • 1
  1. 1.