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2020/2021  KAN-CPHIO3008U  Money, Finance and Philosophy

English Title
Money, Finance and Philosophy

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc/MSc in Business Administration and Philosophy, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Ole Bjerg - Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy (MPP)
Main academic disciplines
  • Philosophy and ethics
  • Finance
  • Economics
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 14-12-2020

Relevant links

Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors:
  • be familiar with the basic mechanics of contemporary money creation
  • be familiar with different theories about the nature of money
  • be able to think and theorize about money in a crossdisciplinary fashion
  • be able to discuss the epistemological and political implications of different conceptions of the nature of money
  • be able to apply theories about money in the analysis of micro- and macroeconomic phenomenon
Money, Finance and Philosophy:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Group exam
Please note the rules in the Programme Regulations about identification of individual contributions.
Number of people in the group 2-3
Size of written product Max. 20 pages
The assignment can be written either individually or in groups of 2-3 people
1 person must write max. 10 pages
2 people must write max. 15 pages
3 people must write max. 20 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

The essay gives you quite a wide scope to write you exam paper. “Essay”, however, does not mean that you can write an unstructured text about how you feel about this or that. The assignment must still be structured with a clear problem statement, an analysis based on well-defined theoretical concepts, and a conclusion summing up the analytical point developed and answering the problem statement. The broad framework is that you can choose whether to write a very empirical text or a more purely theoretical exercise.

An empirically founded essay looks at an empirical phenomenon or object. It applies theories and concepts from the literature to understand and explain the phenomenon. It is important that you find some kind of empirical material, where you can observe your object. Include pieces of the material in the form of quotes or images in your text. A theoretical essay discusses a theoretical concept of problem from different theoretical perspectives. Again it is important that you find a text that allows you to observe your concept or problem. Also make sure to quote from the text as you build your argument. The two genres of essays may also be combined for instance by analyzing an empirical phenomenon from different theoretical perspectives.

Your essay must include a substantial part of the literature covered in the course. You are, however, free to also include secondary literature.

When I read your essays I will be looking for your ability to identify and formulate a problem, which invokes some of the things, we have covered in the course. A good essay uses analytical perspectives from the course in order to spot problems, which may not otherwise be obvious or may break with conventional understandings.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

The purpose of the course is to apply philosophical and economic thinking to the analysis of money. While money is obviously central to economic problems and phenomenon, the thing itself is often overlooked or disregarded in conventional economic theory. However, since the onset of the Great Financial Crisis of 2008 academic and political interest in the constitution of money has increased. Fundamental questions such as 'what is money?', 'where does money come from?', 'what is a bank?', 'what is the purpose of central banks?', 'what is debt?' have come to the fore in contemporary academic debates within economics as well as related disciplines such as philosophy, sociology, anthropology, theology, etc. The course is structured around literature emerging from these debates and it invites the students to engage with these fundamental questions.


Description of the teaching methods
The course consist in a combination of different forms of teaching: Traditional lecturing, case based teaching and student exercises.
Feedback during the teaching period
Feedback is provided through discussion based on cases and exercises solved by the students in each class. Students also have the opportunity to come in my office hours
Student workload
Lectures 33 hours
Exam 10 hours
Preparation 164 hours
Expected literature

Eisenstein, Charles: Sacred Economics. Evolver Editions 2011

Skidelsky, Robert: Money and Government. Allen Lane 2018

Last updated on 14-12-2020