The Keteg Teaching Program and Mission: A new interdisciplinary teaching approach in the realm of economy and society based on the Catholic Social Thought in Hungary
Baritz, Laura. The Keteg Teaching Program and Mission: A new interdisciplinary teaching approach in the realm of economy and society based on the Catholic Social Thought in Hungary. 2017
The aim of this paper is to present the activity, mission and vision of the Hungarian program and organization called “KETEG” (Keresztény Társadalmi Elvek a Gazdaságban = Christian Social Principles in Economy). Basically, KETEG is a community of devoted persons coming from the Hungarian academic and business world with the aim to promote and spread a value driven economic and business thinking both on the level of theory and praxis that is based on the principles of virtue ethics and the Catholic Social Thought (CST). The original goal of KETEG teaching program was to create an interdisciplinary connection between theology/philosophy and social-economic sciences that means a new paradigm in the social-economic thinking compared to the present mainstream utilitarian approach. The basis of the new paradigm is the acknowledgement of human centeredness in the realm of economics. It means that the starting point to approach secular sciences is the human being him/herself and his/her value order, cognition and characteristics. Since participants of the program are expected to have business experience or some mainstream basics of economics, the focus of our program can be directed towards the theological and social teaching foundations and build up an alternative view on economics and business this way. The hypothesis of this project is as follows: the ultimate determinative factor of the economic order is the value order of the human, which means, in case of a thorough analysis of economy, that we should start with the comprehensive cognition of the human being. The human being, ultimately, is approached by various disciplines e.g. psychology, sociology, management studies, HR theories etc., but behind them the deepest lying core self of the person is described by the disciplines of theology and philosophy. Therefore, the KETEG teaching program has developed an integrated structure of different subjects. It consists of three main groups: the ﬁrst and most important group covers the main topics in the ﬁeld of theology and philosophy; in the second group, the fundaments laid down by theology and philosophy are extended during the whole four semester program by ethics; in the process of learning integration, and relying on the fundamental basis of philosophy, theology and ethics, the third group approaches the most specialized topics: ﬁnance, responsible marketing, management studies, etc. The essence of the program integration is given by the subject called Church Social Teaching (CST) that is taught throughout three semesters, including its biblical and historical roots. The economic subjects often refer to the content and principles of CST. As it is obvious from the previous description, the main principle of KETEG teaching program is the dialogue between theology/ philosophy and economy (and other derivative sciences) and it points to the fact that the ultimate goal of economic and social life must be the service of the human being, in other words, the Common Good.