The age of responsibilization: On market-embedded morality

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This article explores emerging discursive formations concerning the relationship of business and morality. It suggests that contemporary tendencies to economize public domains and methods of government also dialectically produce tendencies to moralize markets in general and business enterprises in particular. The article invokes the concept of 'responsibilization' as means of accounting for the epistemological and practical consequences of such processes. Looking at the underlying 'market rationality' of governance, and critically examining the notion of 'corporate social responsibility', it concludes that the moralization of markets further sustains, rather than undermining, neo-liberal governmentalities and neo-liberal visions of civil society, citizenship and responsible social action.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalEconomy and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • Business ethics
  • Capitalism
  • Citizenship
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Governance
  • Neo-liberalism


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