Daniel K. Finn

Dan Finn

Professor of Theology and
Clemens Professor of Economics

B.A., Saint John Fisher College, 1968
M.A., University of Chicago, 1975
Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1977

Office: Main 319
Phone Number: 320-363-5215
Email: [email protected]

Areas of Teaching and Research
  • The relation of Christian ethics and economic life.
  • Courses focus on structures of sin and grace, the history of Christian views of economic life, and competing views of justice in the 21st
  • Current research in process: leading an international research project on “Re-Thinking Justice in Catholic Social Thought, an article on sociological insight into “when sinful social structures change,” participation in a German/American research project on Solidarity, participation in a research project at the Vatican on “Fraternity in the Digital Age.”

  • Daniel K. Finn is Professor of Theology and Clemens Professor of Economics. He is a former president of the Catholic Theological Society of America, the Society of Christian Ethics, and the Association for Social Economics. He led a successful affordable housing campaign among five cities in central Minnesota and has lectured in more than twenty nations in Latin America, Europe, and Asia.

Clemens Chair
Articles and Book Chapters

2023    “Sin and the Social World.” Modern Theology, January.

2020    “Exercising Power in Social Structures: Learning from the Daily Experience of the Laity,” in Donna Orsuto and Robert White, eds., Full, Conscious, and Active: Lay Participation in the Church’s Dialogue with the World, Libreria Editrice Vaticana. 

2020    “What Is Critical Realism?” and “Social Structures,” in Daniel K. Finn, ed., Moral Agency within Social Structures and Culture, Georgetown University Press.

2017    “A Critical Realist Model of Markets: Understanding the Causality Behind Economic Complicity,” Faith and Economics, no. 69, Spring.

2016    “What Is a Sinful Social Structure?” Theological Studies, vol 77, no. 1, March.


2021    Faithful Economics in 25 Short Lessons, Fortress Press, forthcoming.

2021    Business Ethics in Catholic Social Thought, Editor, Georgetown University Press.

2020    Moral Agency within Structures and Culture: A Primer on Critical Realism for Christian Ethics, Editor, Georgetown University Press.           

2019   Consumer Ethics in a Global Economy: How Buying Here Causes Injustice There, Georgetown University Press.

2017    Empirical Foundations of the Common Good: What Theology Can Learn from Social Science, Editor, Oxford University Press.

Reviews and Other Publications

2022    “Why India Needs Fewer Farmers: How Economic Growth Changes Agriculture,” Commonweal, May.

2021    “Theology’s Invisible Hand,” review of Benjamin M. Friedman’s Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, Commonweal, September

2018    “What Can You Do? Understanding Sinful Social Structures,” Commonweal, October.

2018    “Economics as if Theology Mattered,” review of Matthew A. Shadle’s Interrupting Capitalism, Commonweal, December.

2017    “Recycling Isn’t Enough: A Defense of Responsible Mining,” Commonweal, May


2022    The John Courtney Murray Award for Lifetime Achievement, from the Catholic Theological Society of America.

2008    Monica Hellwig Award for outstanding contributions to Catholic intellectual life, from the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities

2005    Thomas F. Divine Award for lifetime contributions to social economics and the social economy, from the Association for Social Economics.

Full List of Publications and CV

Vitae Resumido