Wörsdörfer, Manuel, PD Dr.

former member

Projects and Positions in the Cluster

Research topic

Self-interest vs. the common good: On a central issue in economic ethics

Subject areas

Business Ethics/Economic Ethics;
History of Economic Thought;
Economic Policy.

Main research interests

Economic Ethics/Business Ethics: Sustainable Finance, (Political) CSR and Corporate Citizenship, Business and Human Rights, Equator Principles;
Transnational Legal Theory and Social and Political Philosophy;
History of Economic Thought: Ordnungsökonomik (Constitutional Economics)/Ordo-Economics, Ordo-/Neoliberalism and Social Market Economy;
Behavioral Economics, Economic Psychology and Neuroeconomics;
Economic Policy; and
European Integration and Politics.


Academic Membership:
Australasian Business Ethics Network (ABEN);
Canadian Business Ethics Research Network (CBERN);
Deutsches Netzwerk Wirtschaftsethik (DNWE);
European Business Ethics Network (EBEN);
European Society for the History of Economic Thought (ESHET);
Society for Business Ethics (SBE).

Brink, Alexander/Schumann, Olaf J./Wörsdörfer, Manuel (eds.) (2014): Special Edition of the zfwu: “Next Generation”: New Perspectives on Business and Economic Ethics; zfwu Journal for Business, Economics & Ethics 15(2).
Feichtner, Isabel/Wörsdörfer, Manuel/Zumbansen, Peer (eds.) (forthcoming in 2014): Special Edition of Transnational Legal Theory: 10 Years Equator Principles.
Romeo, Francesco/Wörsdörfer, Manuel/Mele, Raffaele (eds.) (2014): Special Edition of i-lex on Ordoliberalism and the Freiburg School of Law and Economics; i-Lex 21.

Invited Lectures (Selection):
Society for Business Ethics; Annual Conference 2016 (Anaheim/USA, August 5-7, 2016).
Society for Business Ethics; Annual Conference 2015 (Vancouver/Canada, August 6-9, 2015).
European Business Ethics Network (EBEN); Annual Conference 2015 ‘Business Ethics, Peace and Environmental Issues’ (Hacetepe University Center for Business and Professional Ethics, Istanbul/Turkey, June 26-28, 2015).
Australasian Business Ethics Network (ABEN) Annual Conference 2014 ‘Reflection on Ethics’ (University of Sydney Business School, Sydney/Australia, December 1-2, 2014).
European Business Ethics Network (EBEN); Research Conference 2014 ‘Ethics in a Time of Crisis’ (INDEG-IUL – ISCTE, Lisbon/Portugal, October 9-11, 2014.).
European Business Ethics Network (EBEN); Annual Conference 2014 ‘Business Ethics in a European Perspective. A Case for Unity in Diversity?’ (European School of Management and Technology, Berlin/Germany, June 12-14, 2014).
European Society for the History of Economic Thought; ESHET 2014 Annual Conference ‘Liberalisms: perspectives and debates in the history of economic thought’ (Université de Lausanne/Centre Walras-Pareto; Lausanne/Switzerland, May 29-31, 2014).
‘Public Happiness’ (HEIRs Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations, Rome/Italy, June 4-5, 2013).
European Society for the History of Economic Thought; ESHET 2013 Annual Conference ‘Economic Theory and Business Practice: Their relations through the ages’ (Kingston University; London/UK, May 16-18, 2013).
‘Designing and Transforming Capitalism’ (University of Aarhus; Aarhus/Denmark, February 9-10, 2012).
Association Charles Gide pour l’Etude de la Pensée économique; ‘Justice and Economics: ancient doctrines and modern theories’ (Toulouse University; Toulouse/France, June 16-17, 2011).
European Society for the History of Economic Thought; ESHET 2011 Annual Conference ‘Competition, Innovation, and Rivalry’ (Bogazici University; Istanbul/Turkey, May 19-21, 2011).

Organized Conferences:
Workshop on Ethics in Finance and Investment (Goethe University; Frankfurt, October 2, 2015).
Fall Academy 2014 ‘Perspectives of European Integration’ (Goethe University; Frankfurt/ Germany, October 22-26, 2014; in cooperation with Europäische Humanistische Universität Förderinitiative e.V. and KAS).
Book Launch and Panel Discussion ‘Banking of the Future/Responsible Investmentbanking’ (Goethe University; Frankfurt/Germany, October 8, 2014; in cooperation with K. Wendt (Responsible Investmentbanking), Springer and ERM Environmental Resources Management).
KAS-PhD Colloquium ‘Social Market Economy’ (Goethe University; Frankfurt/ Germany, May 7-9, 2014; in cooperation with R. Klump and KAS).
Behavioral Business Ethics: Verhaltensökonomische und ordnungsethische Perspektiven. 1. Frankfurter Tagung zur Wirtschaftsethik (Goethe University; Frankfurt/Germany, October 1-2, 2013; in cooperation with Arbeitsstelle Wirtschaftsethik (G. Minnameier)).
10 Years Equator Principles – 2003-2013. Fragment of a Normative Sustainability Order or Business as Usual? (Goethe-University; Frankfurt/Germany, March 14-15, 2013; in cooperation with I. Feichtner).
Frankfurt Lunchs ‘Gibt es eine Frankfurter Schule der Ökonomie?’ (Annual Conference of the Verein für Socialpolitik ‘Die Ordnung der Weltwirtschaft: Lektionen aus der Krise’; Goethe University; Frankfurt/Germany, September 5-6, 2011; in cooperation with U. Walz and R. Klump).
Michel Foucault und der Ordoliberalismus (Goethe University; Frankfurt/Germany, June 10-11, 2010; in cooperation with T. Biebricher and R. Klump).
Die normativen und ordnungspolitischen Implikationen der Finanzmarktkrise (Annual Young Researchers Conference of the Cluster of Excellence ‘The Formation of Normative Orders’; Goethe University; Frankfurt/Germany, October 24-25, 2009).
Völkerrecht und Weltwirtschaft im 19. Jahrhundert. Die Internationalisierung der Ökonomie aus völkerrechts- und wirtschafts(theorie-)geschichtlicher Perspektive (Max Planck Institute for European Legal History; Frankfurt/Germany, September 3-4, 2009; in cooperation with M. Vec and R. Klump).

American Journal of Economics and Sociology;
Business and Professional Ethics Journal;
Journal of the History of Economic Thought;
Research in Ethical Issues in Organizations;
Society for Business Ethics Annual Conference;
Transnational Legal Theory;
zfwu Journal for Business, Economics & Ethics.

Both class and individual instruction at BA-, MA- and PhD-levels (courses taught: Business and Human Rights; Current Challenges in Economic Ethics; Current Challenges in Economic Policy; Foundations of Economic Policy; History of European Integration; Introductory Economics; Sustainable Finance, CSR and the Equator Principles).

Research Visits:
Visiting Researcher, Carnegie Mellon University and University of Pittsburgh/USA (Feb-May 2015);
Visiting Researcher, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University/Canada (July-Nov 2013);
Visiting Researcher, Institute of Foreign Philosophy, Beijing University/China (Nov-Dec 2012);
Visiting Researcher, Centre for Ethics, University of Toronto, Toronto/Canada (Jan-May 2012).

Publications within the cluster

  • Article
  • Book chapter
    • 2017
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2017): The Equator Principles and the ‘Business and Human Rights Debate’: Hype or Hope? in: Tomasic, Roman/De Jonge, Alice (eds.): Research Handbook on Transnational Corporations; Edward Elgar, pp. 139-168.
        Details | Link to full text
    • 2016
      • Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2016): Die Äquator-Prinzipien und die ‘Business and Human Rights’-Debatte in: Wendt, Karen (ed.): CSR und Investment Banking. Investment und Banking zwischen Krise und Positive Impact; Berlin, Gabler; 405-425.
      • Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2016): Selbstselektion versus ‚Indoktrination‘ in der (sozialen) Marktwirtschaft: Eine wirtschaftsethische Bestandsaufnahme in: Minnameier, Gerhard (ed.): Ethik und Beruf: Interdisziplinäre Zugänge; W. Bertelsmann Verlag; S. 135-156.
    • 2015
      • Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2015): 10 years Equator Principles: A critical appraisal in: K. Wendt (ed.): Responsible Investment Banking. Risk Management Frameworks and Softlaw Standards; Cham, Springer; 473-501.
        Details | Link to full text
      • Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2015): Equator Principles – Now and Then in: Schwartz, Michael/Harris, Howard (eds.): Research in Ethical Issues in Organizations (Vol. 14): The Ethical Contribution of Organizations to Society; Emerald; 121-160.
    • 2010
      • Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2010): On the Economic Ethics of Walter Eucken in: Konrad Adenauer Sitftung (Hrsg.): „60 Years of Social Market Economy. Formation, Development and Perspectives of a Peacemaking Formula”; Sankt Augustin/Bonn; 20-41
        Details | Link to full text
  • Monograph
  • Sonstige
    • 2009
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2009): Tagungsbericht „Völkerrecht und Weltwirtschaft im 19. Jahrhundert. Die Internationalisierung der Ökonomie aus völkerrechts- und wirtschaftstheoriegeschichtlicher Perspektive“
        Details | Link to full text
  • Working paper
    • 2015
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel; Hennig, Alicia (2015): Challenging Voluntary CSR-Initiatives – A Case Study on the Effectiveness of the Equator Principles; Working Paper Series of the Cluster of Excellence ‘The Formation of Normative Orders’ 01/2015.
        Details | Link to full text | urn:nbn:de:hebis:30:3-381320
    • 2013
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2013): 10 Years ‘Equator Principles’: A Critical Economic-Ethical Analysis; Osgoode Hall Law School, Comparative Research in Law & Political Economy (CLPE) Research Paper Series; Research Paper No. 54/2013.
        Details | Link to full text
    • 2011
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2011): Die anthropologischen Grundlagen der Sozialen Marktwirtschaft und der Sozialpartnerschaft – unter besonderer Berücksichtigung neuerer Forschungsergebnisse.
        Details | Link to full text
      • Open-Access-Logo Wörsdörfer, Manuel (2011): Individual and Regulatory Ethics: An Economic-Ethical and Theoretical-Historical Analysis of Ordoliberalism; Normative Orders Working Paper 07/2011.
        Details | Link to full text | urn:nbn:de:hebis:30-113315
    • 2010

Back to the list of persons


„Frankfurter interdisziplinäre Debatte“. Frankfurter Forschungsinstitute laden zum Austausch über disziplinen-übergreifende Plattform ein

Die „Frankfurter interdisziplinäre Debatte“ ist ein Versuch des Dialogs zwischen Vertreter*innen unterschiedlicher wissenschaftlicher Disziplinen zu aktuellen Fragestellungen – derzeit im Kontext der Corona-Krise und u.a. mit Beiträgen von Prof. Dr. Nicole Deitelhoff, Prof. Dr. Rainer Forst und Prof. Dr. Klaus Günther. Seit Ende März 2020 ist die Onlineplattform der Initiative ( verfügbar. Mehr...

Wir trauern um Rainer Schmalz-Bruns (11.9.1954 – 31.3.2020)

Mit Rainer Schmalz-Bruns ist einer der wichtigsten und einflussreichsten Politikwissenschaftler unseres Landes von uns gegangen. Wir verlieren mit ihm einen der originellsten Denker in Bezug auf die Dynamiken demokratischer Ordnungen, auf dessen Expertise und Rat wir stets zurückgreifen konnten, und wir verlieren einen wundervollen Menschen – und lieben Freund – der uns sehr fehlen wird. Mehr...

Upcoming Events

Bis Ende September 2020

In der Goethe-Universität finden mindestens bis Ende September 2020 keine Präsenzveranstaltungen statt. Das Veranstaltungsprogramm des Forschungsverbunds "Normative Ordnungen" wird ebenfalls bis auf Weiteres ausgesetzt.

29. Mai 2020, 18.30 Uhr

Virtual Workshop on the Political Turn(s) in Criminal Law Thinking: Gustavo Beade: The Voice of the Polity in the Criminal Law: A Liberal Republica. More...


Latest Media

Krise und Demokratie

Mirjam Wenzel im Gespräch mit Rainer Forst
Tachles Videocast des Jüdischen Museum Frankfurt

Normative Orders Insights

... with Nicole Deitelhoff

New full-text Publications

Burchard, Christoph (2019):

Künstliche Intelligenz als Ende des Strafrechts? Zur algorithmischen Transformation der Gesellschaft. Normative Orders Working Paper 02/2019. More...

Kettemann, Matthias (2020):

The Normative Order of the Internet. Normative Orders Working Paper 01/2020. More...