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    The Puzzle of Competitive Fairness

    Suttle, Oisin (2022) The Puzzle of Competitive Fairness. Politics, Philosophy and Economics, 2 (2). pp. 190-227. ISSN 1741-3060

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    There is a sense of fairness that is distinctive of markets. This is fairness among economic competitors, competitive fairness. We regularly make judgments of competitive fairness about market participants, public policies and institutions. However, it is not clear to what these judgments refer, or what moral significance they have. This paper offers a rational reconstruction of competitive fairness in terms of non-domination. It first identifies competitive fairness as a distinctive claim, advanced within markets in turn characterised as antagonistic, instrumental and procedural. It distinguishes competitive fairness from a number of familiar ideals with which it might be confused: legitimate expectation, equality of opportunity, sporting fairness and economic efficiency. While many exponents likely assume competitive fairness can be explained in terms of one of these ideals, in each case there are significant objections to doing so. Instead, the paper argues that the most promising justification of competitive fairness is under the republican ideal of non-domination, which can reconstruct many of the intuitive judgments of competitive fairness that we make in particular cases. However, it concludes, this explanation makes it difficult for exponents to continue to emphasise competitive fairness, given diverse other risks of domination, and to other values, in markets.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: competitive fairness; market fairness; fair competition; justice; efficiency; sport; equality of opportunity; legitimate expectation; republicanism; non-domination;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Law
    Item ID: 15350
    Depositing User: Oisin Suttle
    Date Deposited: 27 Jan 2022 10:37
    Journal or Publication Title: Politics, Philosophy and Economics
    Publisher: Sage Publications
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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