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Feelings of tremendous pride well up when I hear about alums who are ascending career ladders on Wall Street, in Silicon Valley, or at locally based tech companies like Amazon. Then, I start to wonder if some of these grads are moving up because they are just good at helping their employers “make money,” but haven’t considered the products (or services) they produce and/or the means used or resulting consequences. What if, for example, they are involved in financing deals that overweigh companies with debt, leading to unnecessary dissolution and mass layoffs, or if they are refining algorithms that deepen political polarization or further addict users to devices? If I am really engaged in preparing “positive change agents” like my school mission statement implies, shouldn’t self-doubt or lament be a more appropriate response when peeking at the LinkedIn profiles of some former students?

In the time that I’ve served as a professor, the stated purpose of business education has greatly evolved. We once mostly saw ourselves as managers of “farm clubs” that readied students for the big leagues (jobs in business), or as one of my own former professors satirically put it, as “sausage makers who take raw meat (students) and grind out products that don’t give future employers indigestion.” Today, with increased awareness of the impact business has on our lives, broader objectives (such as “for more than profit” or “serve society”) and verbs like “change” and “transform” (for instance, “we prepare responsible leaders who will change business for the better”) regularly appear on our websites. As someone who tries to allow faith to shape my work, I claim to embrace these developments, but my initial reactions when receiving news about the worldly “success” of alums seem to betray me.

This disconnection can be somewhat innocently explained. We educators take parental-like pride in the achievements of our former students. So, it seems appropriate to celebrate their successes. Those of us at smaller institutions are also eager to prove we can play up and students landing competitive, prestigious positions offer validation for our efforts. More insidious, however, are the forces that threaten our efforts to reach the aspirations framed in our mission statements. Stratospheric tuition rates, along with an increasing number of employers (especially high-tech) who no longer require college degrees, means our very existence is in jeopardy if we don’t demonstrate measurable “return on investment” by cranking out easy-to-digest and eager-to-please graduates.1 Furthermore, the profit maximization imperative appears to remain intractable, especially among publicly traded companies. “Movements” like stakeholder capitalism, responsible investing, and sustainability broadcast paradigmatic change. However, they are still primarily justified by their positive effects on profit, calling into question the true motivation behind them. Moreover, the social (non-financial) value they purportedly create can be minimal and/or difficult to measure because of imprecise or overly broad definitions.2

Given these kinds of obstacles, what might it mean to allow our faith to animate our work as Christian Professors of Business? Can we simultaneously serve greater (eternal) purposes like “transforming business,” while also meeting the immediate demands of students, employers/ practitioners, academic guilds, and accreditors? In what follows, I will offer some reflections (“advice”) on these questions by exploring vocationally informed “postures” we can take in our teaching, scholarly, and community engagement activities. My comments will be prefaced with a sober look at some of the challenges in front of us.3 I hope my perspectives will be helpful, especially to those in earlier stages of the same vocational journey.

The most tangible reason why many of us feel called to higher education is our love for students, but they can be very challenging to teach. It greatly pains me to acknowledge the lack of engagement some of them display. Evidence exists that business students (on average) spend the least amount of time studying of any major. Furthermore, during their time in college, they demonstrate the lowest gains in critical thinking and writing and attain the lowest scores on the GMAT (graduate business school admission exam).4 To be fair, some of this is our fault as we are the “adults in the room” and should hold them to higher expectations. Yet, it seems fair to say that relatively fewer students enroll in our programs out of innate interest or a sense of calling. It’s not uncommon to hear from my advisees how “bored” they are sitting in our classes. Why then do they choose (or remain in) our major? Several reasons are frequently mentioned when I inquire. A past student candidly stated, “I’m studying business because my goal is to make the amount of money necessary to support a comfortable, upscale lifestyle.” Others fall into the discipline as the primary “default major.” They lack direction, so it’s best to spend four years studying something “practical.” An increasing number come from lower-income families or are first-generation attendees, so pursuing “what they love” isn’t an easily defensible choice. Much of this makes sense, but among the unfortunate consequences are disengagement with one’s studies and a lack of a sense of calling to, or passion for, the work they’re preparing to enter.

In addition to motivational issues, our current students belong to a generation that is far less supportive of capitalism and business.5 Skepticism toward our discipline is already familiar to those of us teaching at faith-based institutions. Many (historical and still) Christian universities were founded to train clergy and missionaries. Business degrees were often adopted far down the road as “cash cows,” much like online programs today. So, we’ve long had to engage with questions about how a discipline that seems to encourage a way of life (consumerism) generate outcomes like extreme inequality and environmental degradation, can align with a Biblical vision of shalom. Yet, the stridency and prevalence of today’s doubts seem different. I increasingly hear students (even business students!) express passionate disdain for capitalism, advocacy for much more stringent regulations, and occasional support for state-planned (socialistic) economies. Discussions about topics like corporate responsibility used to be rather clinical, boring explorations of legal doctrines. Today, they can be highly emotionally charged affairs with strong polarizing overtones. Perhaps I encounter this more often living in a politically liberal metropolis, but occurrences like these seemed rare just a short time ago. The combination of students who lack motivation and those who are mistrustful of capitalism presents us with a significant challenge: How (and can) we shape “responsible leaders” who will “change business for the better” when so many of our students are directionless, dispassionate, and/or doubt-ridden about their discipline?

Engagement with practitioners present us with further challenges. Building and maintaining good relationships with the business community is essential. Doing so ensures we are teaching up-to-date material, enhances student employment opportunities, and creates access to research subjects, student project sites, and/or guest speakers. But there are serious tensions we shouldn’t ignore. In addition to the earlier noted pressure to narrowly tailor our curricula to train “plug and play employees,” we may feel the pressure to escape “ivory tower” criticisms by shaping our research agendas to be more “relevant” to the immediate interests of practitioners.6 I received a stark reminder of the distance between academics and industry when attending an enormous (6-7k attendees) annual conference with a faculty colleague who had spent several decades as a corporate executive. Flipping through the program, he shared his opinion that there was almost nothing offered (1000+ sessions) that would have any appeal to a working professional. Later, we shared a laugh when we noticed the title (and spirit of humility) of one symposium: “What if The{Title of the Association Sponsoring the Conference} Actually Mattered to Business-People?” As a discipline that has struggled to gain legitimacy in the wider academy, business research has had to become more abstract, theoretical, and less “applied.” But in so doing, it is more readily dismissed as “academic” by practitioners. As a result, there has been much recent discussion about ways to make business scholarship more practical.7

There could be much to gain from tilting our research toward the concerns of practitioners. However, even if tenure and promotion expectations to publish in non-practitioner-friendly (“highly ranked”) journals could be changed, my concern is that the interests of businesspeople will reflect the still-dominant profit maximization orthodoxy. Thus, more “applied” research may further ensure the prevalence of studying the effects of specific models, practices, or techniques on profit. As a consequence, there may be less space to integrate the concerns of faith and/or pursue lines of inquiry that are shaped by the aspirations in our mission statements. The challenge of publishing research that is accepted by high-quality journals and that is influential to practitioners who make the decisions that shape business as an institution is big enough. Adding the concerns of faith into the mix makes the task feel nearly impossible.

Another long-standing challenge to business faculty is our uneasy fit within our institutional homes. We seem to be frequent recipients of grumbling from colleagues in other disciplines. Business is often the largest major on campus (and may still be growing) while other departments (especially in the humanities) are experiencing declines. As business faculty, we have enjoyed more robust (“sellers”) job markets, are often better resourced and are rarely threatened by the blade of the budget ax. These factors likely contribute to making us easy targets for criticism.8

We also deal with doubts about the intellectual credibility of our discipline. This can come across subtly: questions about why expensive PhD level faculty are even necessary to “train” students in “technical skills,” under-representation in influential roles and committees, and exclusion from general education and honors program curricula. I’ve also heard the sentiment expressed directly. During the pre-fall retreat of my very first year on faculty, an otherwise friendly colleague from another department said, “Dr. X (a past senior administrator) wasn’t a real academician. He had a doctorate – but it was in Business or Education or a field like that.”

These kinds of encounters tend to make us feel defensive and may lead us to view ourselves as competitors rather than collaborators. Yet, the goal of developing leaders who will change business cannot be achieved from within our discipline alone. Our work is very much dependent upon the health of our institutions and is interdependent with the work of other academic units. The arts, humanities, sciences, and theology all represent gifts of common grace and are needed for the formation of the hearts and minds of students.

Given these challenges, how might we move forward faithfully? I believe that the best starting point is framing our work the same way we are encouraging students to live into theirs, as a “vocation.” In practical terms, this means taking the posture that our teaching, scholarship, and community engagement activities represent intentional participation in God’s mission (‘Missio Dei’) of redeeming all things. Our work then, should aim to shape students, businesspeople, and institutions to serve God and neighbor. In the remainder of this essay, I will sketch some of the implications of what this could look like across our major tasks.

Teaching

Business reflects God’s creativity when it innovates, God’s providence when it supplies life-enhancing goods and services, and God’s beneficence when it creates and supports employment that is meaningful and developmental.9 Thus, we, can in good conscience prepare competent accountants (who ensure the integrity of information necessary to make an economy work), finance professionals (who make the resources necessary for value creation and/or help people steward their money) and marketing analysts (who help understand the needs of customers and refine products accordingly).

To be certain, there are indeed major misalignments between the values of business and those of the kingdom. When profit becomes a singular quest, it can skew decisions towards ends that are run counter to redemptive aims (distorting information on the part of the accountant, self-enrichment by the finance professional, and encouraging consumerism by the marketing analyst).

Given these discrepancies, the “minor leagues” approach to business education is insufficient and we must aim to do more than prepare “competent” professionals for employment. The aim of “faith-learning integration” should be formational and at times reflect what Stanley Hauerwas calls “corrupting youth,” or aiding in the formation of student hearts and minds so they become appropriately counter-cultural.10

This can take many forms. It may mean preparing students to enter some controversial industries or companies to enact change from within. Others can be encouraged to join privately owned organizations or to initiate start-ups that challenge existing paradigms, compete with conventional organizations, and model “redemptive entrepreneurship.”11 On rare occasion, this might mean avoiding specific positions, organizations, or industries altogether. Given the number of characters in the Bible who served God in broken institutions and some (like Esther) who even made serious moral compromises along the way, however, separation should be a last resort rather than the default option. Whichever pathway is taken, students need to be prepared and supported to resist “cultural liturgies” that direct their hearts toward wealth and power and other forces that tend to corrupt good intentions.12 This is true whether they serve in business, government, health care, the arts, the academy, and even the church.

If indeed we are doing more than “making sausage,” we might be more welcoming towards students’ skepticism of business and capitalism. The polarizing ways these concerns can be expressed is troubling, but the questions themselves open windows to explore ways in which systems and institutions, which are also stained by the Fall, need reform. Before we can work toward improvement or transformation, we need clarity about what is broken. We should find it encouraging that students find extreme inequality, exploitative practices, and environmental destruction morally problematic. We can direct discussion toward questions like whether these are “bugs or features” of capitalism, if another system (like Socialism) would truly work better, and/or how these outcomes might be redeemed to challenge students to think in more nuanced ways.

Student passion, even when it’s angry in tone and seemingly motivated by being “against something,” can be channeled into the energy needed to fuel positive change agents. With great intentionality, we help our students come to more complex positions and to use their imaginations to see what redeemed institutions and practices could be like. By implication, this means that we ourselves need to develop and model intellectual and moral virtues. We need to be able to “simultaneously see what is and what might yet be for the best.”13 We need to exercise restraint while remembering that students are young people, and like us, still in development. We should demonstrate empathy in understanding why they might see the world in the ways they do and exercise courage in knowing when to push and challenge them.

It’s important to honestly acknowledge that undertaking the mission of preparing students to change business may in fact harm their career prospects or trajectories. “Prophet” has yet to appear as a desirable characteristic in a job description. Some career tracks may require too much moral compromise to reach the positions of influence necessary to make meaningful changes. None of this should be surprising because discipleship is often costly. So, if some of our students go on to upset their employers’ stomachs, that may be an indicator we are accomplishing our goals.

The problem of low student motivation is not unique to our discipline, nor is it “solvable” (and in fairness, we have many highly engaged students too). In addition to the possible causes I identified earlier, lack of belief in capitalism may sap motivation for some of our students. If so, who can fault them for not wanting to give their lives to something they don’t believe in? In fact, their hesitancy may indicate they have deep convictions, a necessary trait for the change agents we hope to prepare. What can be done? Some evidence exists that approaching work as a calling (vs. a career or a job) leads to higher levels of motivation.14 Applied to students, it seems possible that helping students reframe business as a way to serve God and neighbor might inspire some of them to deepen their engagement with their studies. In my experience, many of our students have a flawed theology of vocation. If they have been exposed to it, it’s usually the bifurcated (sacred vs. secular work) model or at best, the instrumental “business is a mission field” approach. Only a small number of students have considered business as a powerful way to serve God and neighbor, likely because they have been indoctrinated in the beliefs that business is about “making money.” They also seem to lack good role models. So, in addition to inviting them to think differently, we can try to change their hearts through good stories about exemplars who live into the alternative story of business as a way to join in the work of redeeming all things.15

We might be able motivate students in another, less direct way. University budgeting models force us to “compete” with other departments to attain (or retain) faculty lines and other resources. We then become entangled in a contest of “getting more students” to enroll in our majors. Our individual departments might gain numbers, but students wind up in places where they don’t fit. What if we (faculty across all disciplines) acted counter-culturally (and faithfully) and took the posture of helping students discern where God might be calling them? This may mean pointing some bored and unmotivated students to other fields of study. I envision we would act less like commissioned salespeople and more like the sorting hat at Hogwarts. Departmental “head count” might dip, but more students might focus their heads (and hearts) where it really counts. The quality of our classroom interactions may improve, and our institutions might also see boosts in overall student experience and reputation. More importantly, our students are more likely to land where they belong.

Scholarship

Well-developed conversations about models of relating faith to scholarly inquiry and their relative merits already exist. I don’t have much to contribute, but I will state my belief in the wisdom of refraining from being too parochial in prescribing what counts as “Christian scholarship” and thereby needlessly making our “target” too small. A wide variety of subjects can be studied, lines of inquiry taken and/or methodologies employed. Room exists for research that is faith “informed” or “animated” or faith “aligned” or “motivated.” Scholarship that is “basic” or “applied,” that avoids the explicit language of faith and isn’t clearly “distinctive” from secular scholarship (but aligns with and/or is motivated by Christian concerns) should be pursued. So should explicit “Biblical integration” in the form of exegesis and application of scripture as a critical lens or constructive tool, although the number and range of journals that will accept these studies are very limited. There is also vast space in between.

I do think that we should avoid research agendas that are primarily driven by the profit maximization story of business. As noted earlier, investigating the effect of a technique, practice, or model on profit characterizes much conventional business research and reflects the most immediate concern of practitioners. Unfortunately, we can also unwittingly allow this story to permeate faith-informed scholarship as seen by efforts to establish prove that faith-informed practices or values “work” in business. The problem is that “work” usually gets measured by higher profit, so we can easily wind up tacitly working from and/or reinforcing the profit maximization orthodoxy and a version of the prosperity gospel. God never promises that faithfulness will be rewarded with earthly treasure. Faithfulness can be costly, so while honesty or generosity can redound to a business (and may even do so in the majority of cases), it’s unwise to try to establish a 1:1 causal relationship. To be certain, we need not avoid trying to measure the effects of Christian values on profit altogether. Profit is necessary to raise investment, fund innovation, invite mimicry, and reward those who risk capital, but it’s not the only goal of business. Furthermore, both the academic and practitioner communities may be well served by insights into the risks and tradeoffs involved in bringing the convictions of faith to bear on decisions and policies.

A good way to frame our research is by asking how it contributes to the ongoing work of reconciliation (“making things as they should be”) in business and in the wider world. We might then focus on alternative models or techniques or the effects of conventional practices on other forms of well-being. Getting faith-informed scholarship in business accepted into respected journals is challenging, but there are accomplished scholars who consistently get their work published. Sometimes their faith is expressed in overt ways, while at other, it can be seen in the questions asked and/or the topics studied. I can’t claim that their work is always “relevant” to practitioners, but that says more about the formidability of the task of trying to thread three needles at once than it does about the quality of their work.16

Communities of Practice

The size of the gap between the university and industry was further driven home to me a few years ago when I received a call from an acquaintance looking to find a keynote speaker for a gathering of executives. Before I could suggest the names of several accomplished academicians who were also gifted communicators, the caller stopped me short and said the planning committee had given only one clear mandate: “No business professors!” He gently informed me that there’s a general impression that we professors think we know more than we do and that our research interests are far too esoteric.

While I earlier noted above the problems of allowing our curricula or research agendas to be too greatly influenced by the immediate interests of practitioners, there’s a lot we can learn from businesspeople that should inform our teaching and research. I came to realize this more poignantly when interviewing hundreds of business leaders for a documentary film project.17 Having taught and written about connections between faith and business for many years, I admit that I fit the unflattering impression of professors in the preceding paragraph. I learned a lot observing our film director who told me his training in counseling equipped him with “big ears and big eyes” to listen deeply and to allow someone’s story to unfold. It was truly humbling to hear our subjects (and many potential ones) speak, often in sophisticated theological terms, about their hopes, struggles, and very practical and imaginative ways they were bringing their faith to bear on their work. Several times, I was moved to tears. I learned much more than I could have imagined.

Film production is not easily replicable, but I’m convinced that posing provocative questions and active listening are skills can be transferred. Asking people about their work, how they feel about it, how they believe it aligns their faith or values and how it doesn’t, often evokes thoughtful and heartfelt answers. I have posed these questions (or variations thereof) and follow-up ones to friends, neighbors, alums, guest speakers, and even people I have met in places like our church coffee hour. When I can restrain myself from talking too much and/or directing their answers, I often glean insights that I can use to shape my classroom lessons and scholarly interests.

Cross-campus Engagement

It’s tempting to get defensive in our relationships across campus, especially when we feel like we’re targets for unwarranted criticism and/or our academic discipline is not taken seriously. However, universities are already facing many external threats. The last thing we need is to fight among ourselves. Furthermore, as I noted earlier, we are very much dependent on our institutions and other disciplines if we hope to live into a broader vision of business education.

If participating in the reconciliation of all things is our true end, we should find ways to affirm the value of other disciplines to our own students. All academic subjects can testify to God’s creation, deepen our awareness of what’s broken in the world, affirm our shared humanity, and help form our hearts toward the kingdom. Therefore, speaking of general education courses as subjects (objects) to “get out of the way” and/or more subtly, instrumentalizing them as mere “tools” for financial success (for example, “business leaders need to write well”) degrade and distort them. To be certain, I am not arguing that we encourage students to blindly accept everything taught in these disciplines, especially as some ideologies have become prevalent. In these cases, we should help students identify and critically engage the assumptions and underlying theories.

Personally, studying the humanities was deeply formational. The idea that my department could swell while others experienced declines in enrollment and my university would slowly drift into becoming more like a “polytechnic” school has never appealed to me. Several years ago, a colleague and I came up with an idea for a new interdisciplinary major. We approached the Philosophy faculty to share our initial proposal and invited their input. Our aim was to create value for all involved, so we laid out the potential gains and losses to their department and were clear that we would only move forward if they thought the program would represent a “win” for them too. They approved and the resulting major, Politics, Philosophy and Economics, is on a solid growth trajectory. We hope it creates a model for cross-campus collaboration. The biggest winners, of course, are students who now benefit from instruction by faculty in three relatively strong departments and who get to choose a rigorous major where they wrestle with questions through multiple disciplinary lenses.

We can also actively build bridges by drawing upon literature and examples from other disciplines in our classes and by encouraging and participating in cross-disciplinary dialogue, research, and program development. Much effort is required to find time, secure funding, learn new lexicons, and see from different perspectives, but some of the most rewarding and fun experiences (co-authoring, faculty development seminars, etc.), I have been involved with have been cross-disciplinary. These efforts have directly enriched my teaching and scholarship.

The newer stated aspirations of business education represent welcome changes that align well with the convictions of our faith, but the work of making them more than rhetorical is riddled with challenges. As Christians, we recognize the effects of the Fall, so we know not to be blindly optimistic about prospects for or, the ease of, making changes. We also live in the “now, but not yet” part of history, so we know we won’t get everything done now and there will sometimes be messy tradeoffs to be made. However, these are not reasons to throw our hands in the air in exasperation and give up. Our work is also propelled by the belief that our earthly efforts contribute to the fulness of a coming kingdom, when all will be made right. So, we can rest assured that some positive changes are possible now and that our work is not in vain.

Footnotes

  1. Among the large companies that no longer require degrees for some jobs are Apple, Google, and Tesla.
  2. The sheer number of academic studies undertaken to establish links between CSR activities and profit and news stories with titles like “Social Responsibility Pays” seem to indicate that these initiatives are still only acceptable if they prove to be instruments for financial gain (“strategies”). See Stephan Meier and Lea Cassar, “Stop Talking About How CSR Helps your Bottom Line,” Harvard Business Review (January 31, 2018). For some concerns about actual measurable social outcomes, see Bronagh Ward et al., “Covid-19 and Equality: A Test of Corporate Purpose,” KKS Advisors (September 2020); and Peter Goodman, “Stakeholder Capitalism Gets a Report Card. It’s not Good,” New York Times (September 22, 2020). Also see Hans Taparia, “The World May be Better off Without ESG Investing,” Stanford Social Innovation Review (July 14, 2021).
  3. Much of what I will share in this essay been formed by long participation in conversations with colleagues and fellow sojourners who have wrestled with these issues.I am most grateful to them for allowing me travel in their company, as I am to the editors of this journal for the invitation to contribute this essay. I am especially grateful for Bruce Baker, Denise Daniels, Bruno Dyck, Al Erisman, Randy Franz, Gary Karns, Mitch Neubert, Scott Rae, and Jeff Van Duzer. All have been long-term colleagues and/or collaborators who have enriched my thinking about these issues.
  4. Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa, Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011). Also see David Glenn, “The Default Major: Skating Through B-School,” The New York Times (April 14, 2011).
  5. Lydia Saad, “Socialism as Popular as Capitalism Among Young Adults in the U.S.,” Gallup (November 25, 2019), https://news.gallup.com/poll/268766/socialism-popular-capitalism-among-young-adults.aspx.
  6. Debra L. Shapiro, Bradley L. Kirkman, and Hugh G. Courtney, “Perceived Causes and Solutions of the Translation Problem in Management Research,” Academy of Management Journal 50.2 (November 2017).
  7. See Carmen Nobel, “Why Isn’t Business Research More Relevant to Business Practitioners?” Harvard Business School Working Knowledge (September 19, 2016), https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/why-isn-t-business-research-more-relevant-to-business-practitioners.
  8. I’m not pointing an accusing finger by the way, because in truth, I would almost certainly be complaining too, if I wasn’t a member of a business faculty.
  9. For more comprehensive discussions of these points, see: Michael Novak, Business as a Calling (New York: The Free Press, 1996); Jeff Van Duzer, Why Business Matters to God (Westmont, IL: IVP Academic, 2010); Kenman Wong and Scott Rae, Business for the Common Good (Westmont, IL: IVP Academic, 2011).
  10. Stanley Hauerwas, Christian Existence Today: Essays on Church, World and Living in Between (Durham NC: Labyrinth, 1988). For a more comprehensive perspective of formational business education see: Kenman Wong, Bruce Baker, and Randal Franz, “Reimagining Business Education as Character Formation,” Christian Scholar’s Review 45:1 (2015): 5-24.
  11. “Redemptive Entrepreneurship” is language used by Praxis (www.praxislabs.org). Al-though he doesn’t use the exact terms, co-founder and CEO Dave Blanchard describes its contours in Dave Blanchard, “Frontiers of Faith and Entrepreneurship: Cultivating an Alternative Imagination for Ventures and their Impact,” Medium (February 17, 2017), https://medium.com/@dave_blanchard/frontiers-in-faith-and-entrepreneurship-cultivating-an-alternative-imagination-27b21350a5a2.
  12. For more on “cultural liturgies” how they form us and how we can resist them, see James K. A. Smith, Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview and Cultural Formation (Ada, MI: Baker Academic, 2009).
  13. James Mackey, ed., Religious Imagination (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1986), 23; Mary Warnock, Imagination (London: Faber, 1976), 10. (Cited in Samuel Wells, Improvisation: The Drama of Christian Ethics (Ada, MI: Baker Academic, 2004), 76.
  14. See Amy Wrzeniewski et al., “Jobs, Callings and Careers: People’s Relations to Their Work,” Journal of Research in Personality 31.1 (March 1997): 21-33.
  15. For developed arguments on how business can be a calling, see Michael Naughton and Helen Alford, “Vocation of a Business Leader: A Reflection,” Pontifical Council for Justice & Peace and the John A. Ryan Center (2012); Michael Novak, Business as a Calling (New York: The Free Press, 1996); and Jeff Van Duzer, Why Business Matters to God (and What Still Needs to be Fixed) (Westmont, IL: IVP Academic, 2010).
  16. While not an exhaustive list, some of the scholars who I believe exemplify what I’ve described include: Bruno Dyck (University of Manitoba), Gary Weaver (University of Delaware), Denise Daniels (Wheaton College), Mitch Neubert (Baylor University), and Jason Stansbury (Calvin University).
  17. The project is called Faith and Co (www.faithand.co). I served as the producer from 2016-19 and the work has been carried on by several colleagues at SPU since. Dozens of short films have been produced that tell the stories of people who are living out their faith through business.

Kenman Wong

Seattle Pacific University
Kenman Wong, Ph.D. is a Professor of Business Ethics at Seattle Pacific University From 2016-19, he was the founding Creator and Producer of Faith & Co.