Adam Smith Program
Department of Economics · George Mason University

Special Events & Projects

In addition to its regular activities, the Smith Program does special events and projects to enhance the program community, develop relationships with other scholars and academic centers, and produce research in Adam Smith, political economy, and classical liberal thought.

Smith, Hume, Liberalism, and Esotericism

Thomas Merrill and Daniel Klein organized a conference in November 2018, graciously hosted by Institute for Humane Studies, on Smith, Hume, liberalism, and esotericism (see photo below). Papers were published in Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization in 2021. (Ungated manuscript versions of the papers are here.)

2018 conference at IHS, "Smith, Hume, Liberalism, and Esotericism."

Liberal Society: History, Theory, and Practice

Co-sponsored by the Adam Smith Program and Patrick Henry College, this conference was held at Patrick Henry College’s campus in Purceville, VA on April 17, 2021. The conference featured presentations and comments from Smith Program leadership and fellows, along with Patrick Henry faculty. Drawing on ideas in Smith, Hume, Burke, and Tocqueville, among others, participants discussed the meaning and history of liberalism, its relation to conservatism, and different challenges facing the liberal project in our times. The conference program is available here.

2021 conference at Patrick Henry College, "Liberal Society: History, Theory, and Practice."

Adam Smith Meets Leo XIII

In April 2019, the Smith Program joined with the Ciocca Center for Principled Entrepreneurship at the Catholic University of America and participated in the first annual Ciocca Scholar’s Conference in Washington D.C. The conference featured presentations and comments from Smith fellows and program alumni, faculty from Catholic University, and other senior scholars in the greater D.C. area. The gathering facilitated a conversation on the relation between Catholic social thought—especially in the tradition of Pope Leo XIII—and the moral philosophy and economics of Adam Smith. The conference program is available here.   

Liberty Fund Books to Program Fellows!

In Spring 2021 Liberty Fund provided a wealth of books to Program fellows, at a generous discount to the Program. Most of the titles are in the vein of natural law, jurisprudence, moral philosophy, and history. We are deeply grateful!