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Flourishing / Social Sciences

Gordon Menzies

Associate Professor in Economics at the University of Technology Sydney


Thank you for this thoughtful piece. 

The schema would be recognizable by my economics colleagues as they reflect on their own experience, but it is not easily formalizable in one of their models. This is a criticism of economic models, rather than the framework. 

I have worked (with Donald Hay) on bringing economic models closer to a Christian vision of life, and have used generalizations about persons in Pauline theology as a resource. Economics has an explicit representative agent, and I am attracted to the Apostle Paul’s representative agents - the ’in Adam’ and ’in Christ’ persons. 

Following this line of thought, a Christian picture of humanity not only involves a picture of ’flourishing’ but also a picture of sin. 

If one is after a picture of flourishing on its own, as a normative ideal and setting aside sin, then might we begin with the example of Jesus himself?