SANDEL, Michael


Michael J. Sandel is the Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Government at Harvard University, where he has taught political philosophy since 1980. His recent book, What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets, takes on one of the biggest ethical questions of our time: What should be the role of money and markets in our society?


Sandel’s work has been translated into 23 languages.  His books include Liberalism and the Limits of Justice (Cambridge University Press, 1982, 2nd edition, 1998), Democracy’s Discontent (Harvard University Press, 1996), Public Philosophy: Essays on Morality in Politics (Harvard University Press, 2005), and The Case against Perfection: Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering (Harvard University Press, 2007), and Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2009).


At Harvard, Sandel’s courses include “Ethics, Biotechnology, and the Future of Human Nature,” “Ethics, Economics, and Law,” and “Globalization and Its Critics.” His undergraduate course “Justice” has enrolled over 15,000 students, and is the first Harvard course to be made freely available online and on television.


A recipient of the Harvard-Radcliffe Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Prize, Sandel was recognized by the American Political Science Association in 2008 for a career of excellence in teaching.  He has been a visiting professor at the Sorbonne (Paris), delivered the Tanner Lectures on Human Values at Oxford University, and in 2009 delivered the BBC Reith Lectures. In 2010, China Newsweek named him the “most influential foreign figure of the year” in China.


From 2002 to 2005, Sandel served on the President’s Council on Bioethics.  He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Council on Foreign Relations. A graduate of Brandeis University (1975), Sandel received his doctorate from Oxford University (D.Phil., 1981), where he was a Rhodes Scholar.