After studying the meaning of the so-called social responsibility of the firm, and the on-going debate between economists and moral philosophers that follows, this article shows that their respective perception of man is at the heart of the dispute. The article analyses the misunderstandings occurring between economists and environmentalists with respect to cost-benefit analyses and, more generally, with respect to the role of the market and government in dealing with the subject matter. Based on this analysis it is possible to investigate and evaluate the main types of environmental policies, be they market-based or not, and their impact on firms'behaviour.
FOURÇANS, A. (2005). Firms and the Environment in the Global Economy: Conceptual Background and Policies. In: International Trade and Finance Association 15th International Conference. Berkeley: International Trade and Finance Association (ITFA).