“We provide skill and development opportunities for students through classes and events surrounding entrepreneurship and political economy, giving special focus to the ethical infrastructure of entrepreneurial culture and a free society in general, which includes free markets, democratic-republican government, and the character of self-responsible individuals who can live freely.”
—Executive Director, Dr. Stephen Hicks
2007- December 2012
Summary of Accomplishment as of December 2012:
11 new and revised courses
1.5 online courses
26 guest speakers
25 video interviews with guest speakers
45 student prize winners
6 reading groups
2 film and philosophy study groups
8 high school entrepreneur days
23 issues of Kaizen newsletter
Two new courses in entrepreneurship: Entrepreneurship (one undergraduate and one MBA).
Two new courses in business and ethics: Business and Economic Ethics, Entrepreneurship and Ethics.
Four new courses in political economy: Entrepreneurship in American Economic History, Political Philosophy of the American Revolutionary Era, The Constitutional Convention and the Federalist-Antifederalist Debates, Capitalism in the Modern World.
Three courses revised to include significant entrepreneurship, ethics, or political economy components: Sport Management, Social Entrepreneurship, Sports Ethics.
In the 2010-2011 academic year, we filmed and put online Stephen Hicks’s entire Philosophy of Education course, a 48-hour series of lectures on the seven philosophies of education that have dominated American education in the 20th and early 21st century. In just two years, the course has had nearly 320,000 views on YouTube.
In 2012 we produced video case studies for his Business and Economic Ethics course.
Entrepreneurship is a new series of short, instructional lectures on entrepreneurship, which include Dr. Alexei Marcoux on Defining Entrepreneurship: Schumpeter, Kirzner, and Knight and Dr. Stephen Hicks on The Entrepreneurial Process.
Videotaping student presentations as an integrated self-evaluation and educational tool.
Online video instruction allowing students the opportunity for independent study, which is then brought together in classroom discussions.
We invite three or four guest speakers to campus each semester. The guest speaker typically gives one or two talks and goes to lunch or supper with a group of students or faculty. A partial list of our guest speakers:
William Kline on the Philosophy of Business
Alexei Marcoux on Friedrich Hayek
David Kelley on Ayn Rand
Michael Strong on The Power of Entrepreneurship
Terry Noel on The Virtuous Entrepreneur
Phyllis Johnson on Empowering Women Entrepreneurs in Africa
David Schweikart on Karl Marx
Eric Mack on Robert Nozick
David R. Henderson on Seven Myths of Free Markets
Federico Fernández and Martin Sarano (Bases Foundation) on The Business, Economic, and Political Climate in Argentina
Douglas Den Uyl on Four Theories of Capitalism: Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, Ayn Rand, and Adam Smith
Video Interviews with Guest Speakers
Since 2009 we have filmed 15-20-minute follow-up interviews with our guest speakers based on their talks, which are then edited and posted on our website. Twenty-five interviews have been posted since 2009.
As of 2011, the Department of Philosophy inaugurated a new Minor in Ethics, incorporating several CEE courses, including: Biomedical Ethics, Sports Ethics, Ethical Theory, Business and Economic Ethics, Entrepreneurship and Ethics, Organizational Ethics.
As of 2012, the Department of Economics, Business, and Accounting is instituting a new track in Entrepreneurship, incorporating several CEE courses.
High School Entrepreneur Day:
High School Entrepreneur Day is an annual event, co-sponsored by the EBA department and CEE, during which 100-125 local high school students learn about the facets of entrepreneurship from CEE professors. For example, during a recent Entrepreneur Day, Professor Jeff Fahrenwald explored the personality traits of an entrepreneur, Professor Fred Rezazadeh discussed the economics of entrepreneurship, Professors Bill Lewis and Steve Kadamian led a session on business planning, and Professor Stephen Hicks talked about the ethics of entrepreneurship. Students also received advice from a panel of local entrepreneurs and a gift bag from CEE filled with books and materials related to entrepreneurship and ethics.
Since 2009 we have run an extra-curricular series of reading groups. One book a semester. Attendance from a low of ten students to a high of twenty-six. All of the books are chosen with an eye to their importance to ethics, entrepreneurship, and/or political economy.
Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments
Friedrich Nietzsche, Genealogy of Morals
James Bowman, Honor: A History
Film and Philosophy Study Groups:
To complement our reading groups, CEE started a film discussion group, which met twice in 2012. In October, Professors Matthew Flamm and Shawn Klein watched the science-fiction classic Blade Runner with students and led a group discussion after the film on its philosophical themes. In November, the group held a screening and discussion of the Woody Allen film Crimes and Misdemeanors.
Other Student Groups:
Students for Liberty
CEE professor Shawn Klein took a group of students to the Students for Liberty Chicago Regional Conference at the University of Chicago on November 3. The Keynote address was given by Gene Healy, Vice-President of the Cato Institute.
Atlas Shrugged: Part II
Accompanied by Professors Hicks and Klein, students attended the October 12th release of Atlas Shrugged: Part II, the second installment of the three-part movie adaptation of Ayn Rand’s magnum opus. Afterwards, the students and professors met for snacks and a discussion of the movie.
Encouraging Student Independence and Individuality in Higher Education:
CEE has been working with Marsha Enright of the Reason, Individualism, Freedom Institute and Eduardo Marty, Founder of Junior Achievement Argentina, to implement a new educational program at Rockford University that allows students to individualize their classes around a core set of courses in one of the following majors: economics, business, or philosophy.
The program is based on CEE-developed courses in capitalism, business ethics, entrepreneurship, and philosophy. Our goal is to attract to CEE and Rockford University students who want to work with us to study the great ideas and minds of our age, including Ludwig von Mises, Ayn Rand, Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman—as well as their many intellectual opponents.
Over 1,000 books distributed to university students and to high schools students for use in our courses and at our annual High School Entrepreneur and Business Days.
Titles include Forbes Greatest Business Stories of All Time, The Fountainhead, The Martha Rules, The Myth of the Robber Barons, Economics in One Lesson, The Wall Street Journal Complete Small Business Guidebook, and The E-Myth Revisited.
Each semester, depending on which of our sponsored courses is being taught, we sponsor prizes for outstanding work. Typically one student wins first prize and one to three students with win honorable mentions. Cash prizes are typically $300-500 for first prize and $100 for honorable mention. Our goal is to encourage students to do better than they sometimes might and to reward excelling students with honor, cash, and a positive item they can put on their résumés.
Four or five times per academic year we publish our newsletter highlighting our new courses, student prizes, guest speakers, along with an extended interview with a prominent entrepreneur. For our November 2012 issue, we launched a brand new design.
Francesco Clark on Entrepreneurship and Overcoming Adversity
John Allison on Entrepreneurial Banking
Jack Stack on Entrepreneurship and Open-book Management
Eduardo Marty on Entrepreneurship in Argentina
Mary Mazzio on Entrepreneurship and Documentary Film
Robert Bradley, Jr. on Enron and Political Entrepreneurship
John Chisholm on Entrepreneurship and Customer Satisfaction
Judy Estrin on Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Ray Stata on Entrepreneurship and Technology Leadership
David Checketts on Sports Leadership and Entrepreneurship
Steve Mariotti on Entrepreneurship and Education
Jerry Reinsdorf on Entrepreneurship and Sports Management
Kevin O’Connor on Venture Capital and Entrepreneurship
Reena Kapoor on Entrepreneurship and Marketing
Ed Snider on Entrepreneurship and Sports
Anil Singh-Molares on Entrepreneurship and Global Markets
Michael Newberry on Art and Entrepreneurship
John Gillis on Architecture and Entrepreneurship
Chan Luu on Entrepreneurship and Fashion Design
Jay Lapeyre on Entrepreneurial Resilience in New Orleans
R. Paul Drake on Entrepreneurial Research Science
Jeff Sandefer on Entrepreneurship and MBA Education
William and Wilson Ling on Entrepreneurship in Brazil
Publications by CEE:
Summary of Shawn E. Klein’s Accomplishments
Current Academic Position
Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Rockford University/Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship.
Teaches: Ethics, Sports Ethics, Business Ethics, Logic, and other courses in philosophy.
Ph.D. and M.A. in Philosophy from Arizona State University, 2011.
B.A. from Tufts University, 1995.
Reason Papers published “Harry Potter and Humanity: Choices, Love, and Death.”
At his new Sports Ethicist Blog, Professor Klein examines the ethical implications of sport and the ways sport can teach us about ethics and human life: http://sportsethicist.com
“Volitional Consciousness and Evolution: At the Foundations of Classical Liberalism” (Forthcoming in Springer’s Philosophical Studies in Contemporary Culture series).
“Falling Short of Perfection: A Review of Ayn Rand’s Normative Ethics: The Virtuous Egoist by Tara Smith.” The New Individualist October 2007.
“Solving Liberalism’s Problem: A Review of Norms of Liberty: A Perfectionist Basis for Non-Perfectionist Politics by Douglas Rasmussen and Douglas Den Uyl.” The Independent Review Winter 2007.
“The Mirror of Erised: Why We Should Heed Dumbledore’s Warning,” Harry Potter and Philosophy. Klein and Baggett, eds., Open Court, 2004.
Harry Potter and Philosophy: If Aristotle Ran Hogwarts. Open Court, 2004 (with David Baggett).
Panels and Conferences
APEE panel “Author Meets Critics: Adam Moore’s Privacy Rights”
42nd Annual PCA/ACA National Conference paper “Harry Potter and Humanity”
Chaired two panels at the APA Eastern Conference for the American Association for the Philosophic Study of Society, of which he is co-president
Professors Shawn Klein and Michael Perry organized a successful conference on the study of sport. The symposium had two panels: the first on Sports Ethics and the second on Rhetoric in Sport. Both panels were well-attended and had lively discussions following the presentations.
“Commercial Sport and Corruption: A Critique,” 39th Annual Meeting of the International Association for the Philosophy of Sport, The College at Brockport, Rochester, NY. Sept 8-11, 2011.
“Home Sweet Home? The Paternalism of Expanding Homeownership”, Ethics and the Financial Crisis Panel, 35th Annual Conference of The Association of Private Enterprise Education, Las Vegas, April 11-13. 2010.
“Losing and YouTube: Does the Broadcast of Defeat Humiliate?” 37th Annual Meeting of the International Association for the Philosophy of Sport, Seattle University, August 27-30, 2009
“The Ethics of Sport,” Atlas Society Summer Seminar, Portland State University, July 1, 2008.
“Harry Potter and Humanity: Choice, Love, and Death,” Why Take Harry Seriously?—A Spring Colloquium, Tufts University, March 5, 2008.
Seminar Instructor. “Argument Analysis and Philosophical Detection,” 2010 Atlas Society Graduate Seminar. George Washington University, August 1-7, 2010.
Invited Discussant, Liberty Fund: Liberty and Progressive Taxation, June 28- July 1, 2007, Milwaukee, WI.
Invited Discussant, Liberty Fund: Hayek on Law, Legislation, and Liberty, November 10-13, 2005, Tucson, AZ.
Interviewed by The New York Times (“Shades of Gray on Way to Podium” by Karen Crouse, August 10, 2012)
Interviewed by Bloomberg (“Ousted Badminton Players Lose in Challenge to Olympic Spirit” by Chris Spillane, August 2, 2012)
Awards and Scholarships
Institute for Humane Studies conference travel grant.
Award of Appreciation from Rockford University Athletics Department.
Nominated for Excellence in Teaching Award (Rockford University), 2009-2010.
Young Scholars Program Grant.
Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship conference travel grant.
Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship course development grant.
Nominated for Excellence in Advising Award (Arizona State University), 2005-2006.
Atlas Society/Objectivist Center Graduate Scholarships, 2004-2007.
Sports Studies Program Overview
Sport exemplifies important virtues such as integrity, personal responsibility, and the pursuit of excellence. Sport always has been a major part of human cultures. As such, the study of sport is the study of the wide range of human activity and character.
The Sports Studies Minor will bring together several disciplines in the liberal arts and sciences for the study of sport in society. The minor will consist in six courses. The core of the program will be an introductory seminar, an advanced seminar, and Sports Ethics. Electives will include: sports rhetoric and literature, sports psychology, the biology of sport, the history of sport, and the business of sport.
We have interest from many faculty members. Philosophy professor Shawn Klein already teaches Sports Ethics and English professor Michael Perry teaches Sports Rhetoric and Literature. History professor Catherine Forslund is interested in teaching the history of sport. Biology professor Sean Beckmann will teach the biology of sport. Psychology professor Joel Lynch will teach the psychology of sport. Other professors in Business, Physical Education, Spanish, and Classics are interested in developing courses for this program.
Among Rockford University students there is a strong demand for a program like this. Nearly two-thirds of our students are student-athletes. We have a strong Physical Education major. When we first offered Sports Ethics in 2008, the enrollment was so high that we had to open a second section. In subsequent semesters, the class is always fully subscribed early in the registration process.
We also plan to host annual Sports Studies Symposia. This day-long conference will bring together academics in various disciplines from around the region for scholarly discussion and debate about issues within sport. The first symposium was held in the spring of 2012 and the second is scheduled for April 2013. The Symposium’s goals are to encourage scholarship and publications by our faculty, making Rockford University a center for sports scholarship. This will in turn attract more students to Rockford University.
As the program grows, we will expand to a major with a senior seminar and an internship program at sports-related enterprises. The growth of the program will also allow us to develop other programs beyond the university, including week-long summer seminars for high schools. These will bring high school students to the campus for a taste of university life and will mix academic study of sport with outings to local sports businesses and events.
In our first year, we will focus on developing the new Sports Studies courses and promoting the program through events like the Sports Studies Symposium. The second year will focus on developing Rockford University as a center of sports studies. This includes an expanded symposium, bringing in more guest speakers, and encouraging Rockford University faculty to present at their disciplines’ academic conferences. In the third year, we hope to formalize the Sports Studies major and to begin planning for the high school summer seminars.
Sports Ethics Course
Professor Shawn Klein
Catalog Description: This course investigates moral issues in sports, including the fairness of performance-enhancing drugs and techniques, cheating and deception, ethical issues in the economics of sports, and the nature of sportsmanship. Other topics may include ethical issues in youth sports and the role of violence in sport.
The course starts with discussions about the nature of sportsmanship. We then apply sportsmanship to specific cases such as blowouts, fouling, and performance-enhancing drugs.
Second, we study the morality of achievement, winning, character, competition, and leadership. Using examples from Jackie Robinson, Sandy Koufax, post-apartheid South African rugby, and others, we explore the positive effects of sport and competition.
The last third of the course focuses on ethical issues in the business and economics of sports. Should Alex Rodriguez and other major league baseball players get paid the millions they do? Are salary caps in professional sports prohibited or required by justice? Should college athletes be paid? Should stadiums be built with taxpayer funds or through private financing?
Summary of Stephen Hicks’s 2011-2012 Accomplishments
Current Academic Positions
Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Rockford University, Rockford, IL.
Executive Director, The Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship.
Adjunct Professor of Business Ethics, Graduate School of Business, Loyola University Chicago.
Explaining Postmodernism: Skepticism and Socialism from Rousseau to Foucault. Scholargy Publishing, 2004. Portuguese translation published by Callis Editora, Brazil, 2011. Expanded Edition published 2011. Translations in Persian, Spanish, Dutch, and one chapter in Serbo-Croatian
Nietzsche and the Nazis. Ockham’s Razor Publishing, 2010.
“What Business Ethics Can Learn from Entrepreneurship.” [PDF] Journal of Private Enterprise 24:2. Reprinted in Indian Management Research Journal 1:3 (University of Pune, India).
Review of Kevin Gibson’s Business Ethics (Cambridge University Press, 2008). [PDF] Teaching Philosophy 33:2 (June 2010).
Review of Donald Frey’s America’s Economic Moralists (SUNY Press, 2009). Forthcoming in Business Ethics Quarterly (December 2010).
“Ethics and Economics.” The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics, Second Edition, ed. David R. Henderson. Liberty Fund Press, 2008.
“Egoism in Nietzsche and Rand.” The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies 10:2 (2009), 1-43.
Reason Papers published his blog post critiquing Carlin Romano’s presentation of Ayn Rand and her philosophy in Romano’s book America the Philosophical.
Kaizen Interviews Conducted
Robert Bradley, Jr. “Political Entrepreneurship.” Kaizen Issue 13 (August 2010).
Mary Mazzio. “Entrepreneurship and Documentary Film.” Kaizen Issue 14 (October 2010).
Eduardo Marty. “Entrepreneurship in Argentina.” Kaizen Issue 15 (December 2010).
Jack Stack. “Entrepreneurship and Open-book Management.” Kaizen Issue 16 (February 2011).
John Allison, “Entrepreneurial Banking.” Kaizen Issue 17 (June 2011).
Francesco Clark. “Entrepreneurship and Overcoming Adversity.” Kaizen Issue 18 (August 2011).
Chan Luu. “Entrepreneurship and Fashion Design.” Kaizen Issue 19 (December 2011).
Jay Lapeyre. “Entrepreneurial Resilience in New Orleans.” Kaizen Issue 20 (February 2012).
R. Paul Drake. “Entrepreneurial Academic Science.” Kaizen Issue 21 (April 2012).
Jeff Sandefer. “Entrepreneurship in MBA Education.” Kaizen Issue 22 (September 2012)
William and Wilson Ling. “Entrepreneurship in Brazil.” Kaizen Issue 23 (November 2012).
Magatte Wade. “Entrepreneurship from Africa to America.” Kaizen Issue 24 (February 2013).
Andre Loiferman. “Entrepreneurship in Brazil.” Kaizen Issue 25 (April 2012).
Panels and Seminars
APEE Chaired Session and a paper on “Rights in Mises, Hayek, and Rand”
Explaining Postmodernism seminar in Chicago
Representational Art Conference in Ventura, California, hosted by California Lutheran University. The lecture included themes from his essay “Why Art Became Ugly” (2012)
Fórum da Libertade in Brazil on “Educating for Entrepreneurship” (2012)
“The Virtuous Entrepreneur” at Wheeling Jesuit University for the Distinguished Speaker Series (2012)
“Non-Profits & Conflicts and Harmonies of Interest” for the Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence (2012)
Invited lecture series at Universidad Francisco Marroquín, Guatemala (November 3-6, 2011):
1) “Entrepreneurs and Philosophers: Why a Philosophy of Freedom Matters”
2) “Economics as a Value Science”
3) “Philosophy for Economists and Economics for Philosophers”
4) “Ethics and Political Economy”
“Occupy Wall Street–or Occupy Pennsylvania Avenue?” Philosophy Club, Rock Valley College, October 25, 2011.
“Using Great Entrepreneurs to Teach Great Philosophy.” Free Minds-Atlas Society Seminar, Anaheim, CA, July 13, 2011.
Three lectures at Cato Institute and Institute for Humane Studies Seminar (Washington, DC, July 2-8, 2011): “Classical Liberal Thought & Political Economy,” “Entrepreneurship, Markets & Morality,” “Philosophy, Public Choice & The Meaning of Life.”
“The Fate of Art under Capitalism.” Liberty Fund, Indianapolis, Indiana, June 14, 2011.
“Entrepreneurship and Corporate Social Responsibility.” 10th International Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility. Loyola University New Orleans, Louisiana, May 19, 2011.
“What Is Liberty Good For? Political Activism and the Meaning of Life.” Students for Liberty conference, University of Chicago, October 16, 2010.
“Austrians, Objectivists, and the Unrequited Love of Philosophy for Economics.” Keynote lecture for the Austrian Economics in the 21st Century conference. Fundacion Bases and School of Economics of Catholic University in Rosario, Argentina, August 5-7, 2010.
“Entrepreneurship and Humanistic Management Ethics.” 16th International Symposium on Ethics, Business and Society, May 13-15, 2010, IESE Business School, University of Navarre, Barcelona, Spain.
“The Evolution of the Mixed Economy—A Schematic Approach.” Association of Private Enterprise Education, Las Vegas, April 2010.
“Entrepreneurship and Politics: A Vital Debate.” Houston Property Rights Association, Houston, Texas, March 12, 2010.
“Entrepreneurship and Ethics.” Two lectures. Loyola University, Chicago, February 4, 2010.
“Entrepreneurship as a Career Option.” YMCA Black and Hispanic Achievers Program, Booker T. Washington Center, Rockford, Illinois, January 28, 2010.
“What Philosophers Need to Know about Economics.” Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, January 13, 2010.
“Global Entrepreneurship and Business Ethics.” Keynote address for the 2009 International Conference on Business & Public Policy, Northern Illinois University, April 24, 2009.
“Entrepreneurial Ethics in Atlas Shrugged.” Fiftieth Anniversary event. Hampden-Sydney College, Virginia, November 15, 2007.
Honors and Awards
Excellence in Teaching Award, Rockford University, 2010.
$25,000 Apgar Foundation grant, March 2011. Awarded to CEE.
$13,500 grant from Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation, June 2011. Awarded to CEE.
$8,000 grant from Atlas Economic Research Foundation, September 2011. Awarded to CEE.
Reviewer for Business Ethics Quarterly, Journal of Social Science Education, Journal of Business Ethics, Reason Papers, and Turkish Journal of Business Ethics.
Student ($25-$99) – Kaizen (quarterly newsletter), CEE bookmark
Basic ($100-$499) – Kaizen (quarterly newsletter), CEE bookmark
Sustaining ($500-$999) – Basic benefits + all essay publications
Patron ($1,000+) – Sustaining benefits + all publications, including books, annual report from the Executive Director
PLEASE SEND CHECK OR MONEY ORDER TO:
Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship
c/o Stephen Hicks, Ph.D.
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
Thank you for your tax-deductible donation. Donations are processed by the Rockford University Business Office in conjunction with the Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship and are audited by Gary Bausch, CPA, Senior Manager at Baker, Tilly, Virchow, and Krause, LLP.