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CoAS to Offer New Interdisciplinary Major in Philosophy, Politics & Economics



April 29, 2019

This fall, Drexel University will join an exclusive group of U.S. and international universities offering a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). A joint endeavor of the Department of Politics, the Department of English and Philosophy and the LeBow College of Business’ School of Economics, the BA in PPE provides a multidisciplinary foundation for professionals who will address the complex, interconnected challenges of contemporary life.

Drexel’s PPE program exemplifies the University’s commitment to comprehensive education at the intersection of thought and practice. The program starts from the idea that the economy is fundamentally political; politics are fundamentally economic; and both are shaped by centuries of philosophical inquiry.

The degree will prepare students for careers that require careful analysis, clear foresight, and thoughtful leadership: government, politics, law, public policy, public service and business. Beyond simply adding together the skills and concerns of the component disciplines, PPE at Drexel will offer students a broad, but cohesive, set of analyses and skills to tackle real‐world problems.

Philosophy, Politics and Economics as an interdisciplinary program began in the early 20th century at the University of Oxford. The goal was to ensure that scholars trained in the great works of the Western canon and classics were also ready to apply their learning in practical, governmental, legal and business contexts, and to become leaders and change agents. PPE is devoted to the idea that great learning should inspire and empower students to leave an impact on the world, rather than the ivory tower.

Historically, political science and economics descend from the intellectual tradition of “political economy” — the application of philosophical principles to problems in politics and markets. PPE programs rejoin these disciplines to revive what is often lost in the separation: the political wisdom that acknowledges and understands economic imperatives, and the economic intelligence that recognizes the limits of political (and philosophical) ideas.

Drexel’s PPE program will build on a foundation of rigorous philosophical thought, political and economic theory, and applied research skills. To find out more about this exciting new major, beginning fall 2019, please contact one of the co-directors: Peter Amato, PhD, teaching professor and director of programs in philosophy, Amelia Hoover Green, PhD, assistant professor of politics, and Roger McCain, PhD, professor of economics.