The Economy of Francesco: “Rediscovering the civil economy founded by the Franciscans”

On 17 November 2020, the Vatican News published an interview with Stefano Zamagni, president of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, presenting the Economy of Francesco event. This event was commissioned by Pope Francis to show the world the need to initiate a process of global change on both the financial and social fronts. The conference will take place from 19 to 21 November 2020 in virtual form and will see the participation of over two thousand young economists and entrepreneurs who will discuss work, ethics, finance and artificial intelligence. Here is an excerpt from Federico Piana’s interview.

Zamagni was asked, “what proposals will emerge during these three days of dialogue between young economists and entrepreneurs from all over the world”?

He replied:

The main proposal is to go back to the origins. The market economy was born in Tuscany between 1400 and 1500, the century of Humanism, within the current of Franciscan thought. It was the Franciscans who created it but with one objective: the common good. However, from the 1600s the market economy became capitalistic, changing the goal that is no longer the common good but the ‘total good’. So, showing what has happened because of this distortion of thought is the main objective. It is from culture that we must start: if in our universities, in our places of research, we continue to teach only the paradigm of political economy that was affirmed in 1700 and we neglect the paradigm of civil economy that was born in 1400, we will never come out of it.


For the complete interview, in Italian, go to