Standard Article

Just Price

  1. Joakim Sandberg

Published Online: 1 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781444367072.wbiee516

The International Encyclopedia of Ethics

How to Cite

Sandberg, J. 2013. Just Price. The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 FEB 2013


The just price tradition has roots in Ancient philosophy but is most straightforwardly associated with a line of medieval philosophers and theologians, such as John Duns Scotus (see Duns Scotus), St. Thomas Aquinas (see Aquinas, Saint Thomas) and others. What generally characterizes the tradition is an interest in matters of ethics and justice concerning the pricing of goods and services on commercial markets. Medieval philosophers were often critical of commerce in general – and commerce with money in particular (see Usury) – viewing it as an (at best) unfortunate practical necessity dominated by (at least strong tendencies towards) the sins of greed and deceit. The just price tradition can be seen as a part of this moral critique of commerce and profiteering in general (see Profit Motive). At the same time, however, perhaps it can also be seen as staking out a way for commercial agents to ethically redeem themselves.


  • business ethics;
  • practical (applied) ethics