Center for Philosophy, Politics, and Economics

Center for Philosophy, Politics, and Economics

A Tradition of Pluralism

Brown University has a long and distinguished tradition of pluralism. While other Ivy League schools were founded on religious charters, Brown was different from the start. Brown’s Charter of 1764 states: 

 

Students on the main green
Students on the main green

“ It is hereby enacted and declared that into this liberal and catholic institution shall never be admitted any religious tests: But, on the contrary, all the members hereof shall forever enjoy full, free, absolute and uninterrupted liberty of conscience. ”

THE BROWN CHARTER OF 1764

In 1969, the students who devised the New Curriculum had a similar idea: Instead of one mandated curriculum imposed upon all, they insisted that, at Brown, each student should be free to experiment and devise a unique path of study for themselves. 

The PPE Center is proud to carry on this tradition at Brown today. While we recognize the importance of disciplinary expertise, the complex and multi-faceted problems facing the world today benefit from a more interdisciplinary analysis. Even rigorous social scientific analysis must confront pressing and difficult normative questions and tradeoffs. Normative theorists likewise must understand well-established social scientific facts and accurately consider a wide range of existing economic, social, and political processes. As both a substantive topic but also as a methodological approach, PPE brings the best of the old, and some of the most important of the new, academic disciplines into conversation. The PPE Center does so in a variety  of programs, including the Janus Forum Lecture Series, The Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Society, The Postdoctoral Research Associate Program, and in the content of our Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Research Workshop.