September 25, 2018

(Washington, D.C.) - The Catholic University of America’s Busch School of Business is pleased to announce the opening of a new interdisciplinary academic area, Social Research. The Social Research Area brings together scholars from philosophy, sociology, theology, entrepreneurship, economics, political science, and related disciplines, in the spirit of an area traditionally offered under the heading of PPE (Philosophy, Politics and Economics). What truly sets this area of study apart from those offered by other institutions is the focus on Catholic social thought.

"The Busch School's Social Research Area is precisely what is needed for students studying business today: a way to integrate the great insights of the Catholic and Christian intellectual tradition into the study of economics, business, and paths to flourishing in society.  Few Catholic universities offer such a program.” - Father Dominic Legge, O.P. - Assistant Director of the Thomistic Institute

The new Social Research area at Catholic University unites an understanding of the human person in a fuller social, historical, and theological perspective with a rigorous attention to the facts and methods that are newly available. It is a project of clarity and precision attuned to a current situation that is in turn unexpected, alarming, and revealing.” - Richard Spady, Ph.D. - Senior Research Fellow, Nuffield College, University of Oxford; Research Professor, Department of Economics, Johns Hopkins University

All new courses, such as Game Theory and Strategic Thinking, Family and Society, and Catholic Social Thought and Political Economy, and special topics courses on The Information Economy and Prudence in Institutions will begin in the spring of 2019. In addition to teaching, scholars have active research programs inspired by some of the thorniest problems in their primary disciplines. One such program, the American Fertility Project, aims to sketch the contours of contemporary American fertility through a combination of in-depth qualitative interviews and nationally representative survey data.

Associate Dean and Ordinary Professor of Ethics and Social Philosophy at The Busch School of Business, Michael Pakaluk, Ph.D., elaborates on the mission of the Social Research area,“The Social Research area at the Busch School was established on the conviction, following Michael Novak, that business practice in a free society stands on a "three-legged stool" of economic freedom, political freedom, and moral restraint.  Business must be understood and practiced in the context of civil society, an ethical culture, religious liberty, and the family as the basic cell of society. In this way, both the promise and the proper limits of the free market can be appreciated.  As situated in a "Catholic university", the Busch School places business in its proper human context, and as situated in The Catholic University "of America," the Busch School aims to capture all that is good in American industry and free enterprise, and pass it on.”

Following the principle that excellence builds first from people and not programs, the Social Research area features prominent scholars as members of the faculty. Included among these distinguished professors will be Andrew M. Yuengert (Ph.D. Yale, Economics) who joins the Busch School from Pepperdine University where he was the Blanche E. Seaver Professor of Social Science, and Professor of Economics at Seaver College. Also joining the Social Research area is Michael J. New (Ph.D. Stanford, Political Science), a Cato- and Charlotte Lozier-affiliated scholar with expertise in the legislative process, fiscal policy, and social opinion research. He is frequent contributor to the National Review Online and other media outlets.

The new area is headed by Assistant Professor Catherine R. Pakaluk, Ph.D.. To discover more about the Social Research Area at the Busch School of Business, email or visit