The Franciscan Tradition in Economic Thought
Free online course offered by the EoF Academy 

The EoF Academy offers a free online course on Franciscan economy and economic thought. The Franciscan order has an important place in the birth of the market economy. Many historians and economists point to poverello d’Assisi (St. Francis) as a forerunner of the market economy, even of capitalism. Franciscan was in fact the first school of medieval economic thought, and in the second half of the fifteenth century, the Franciscan friars founded the Monti di Pietà, non-profit financial institutions, at the origin of the tradition of Italian and European popular and social finance.

A spiritual movement born from the choice of Madonna Povertà who gave birth to banks and treatises on coins has always generated surprise and many misunderstandings. In fact, as in the case of monasticism, the relationship between Franciscans and the economy is also much more complex than it is told – and much more interesting.

The four lessons of this course will present and analyze this complexity, showing how Franciscan order and its protagonists elaborated innovative economic reflections and practices. Each lecture will include a laboratory moment, where the participants will discuss classic texts from Franciscan economic thought.

Teachers: Luigino Bruni (Full professor, LUMSA University), Paolo Santori (Assistant Professor, Tilburg University)
Course and teaching assistants: Valentina Erasmo (EoF Academy Research Fellow), Giulia Gioeli (PhD candidate, LUMSA University)

📆 The second lesson is taking place on May 31 h 4.00 – 6.00 pm CEST.


Participation is allowed upon registration. The registration deadline was on May 12, 2023.

Language: Italian with translation in English. 

Lectures will take place via Zoom and will not be recorded.

A certificate will be released for the participants in the four lectures. 

For further inquiry, please contact: [email protected]