Autonomy and Subordination: Virtuous Work in Light of Aristotelian Practical Knowledge in Organizational Theory

Javier Ignacio Pinto-Garay, Ignacio Ferrero, Germán Scalzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper aims to integrate the concept of autonomous and subordinated work into Aristotelian organizational theory by enhancing the epistemological framework of neo-Aristotelianism and by adding a Thomistic interpretation of organizational practical knowledge. We sustain that, in order to advance our understanding of the firm in terms of excellence and the common good, the concept of practical knowledge applied to organizational theory requires reflection on the nature of work in modern organizations. For this, we will explain (i) how an organization that aims for excellence is most appropriately defined as a community of autonomous work, (ii) how practical knowledge in organizations must be defined considering work as deliberative production and, finally, (iii) how productivity in organizations is best described when work is envisioned in terms of autonomy and subordination
Original languageEnglish
Article number
Pages (from-to)47-80
Number of pages34
JournalBusiness & professional ethics journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2021


  • Common good
  • Neo-Aristotelianism
  • Organizational theory
  • Practical knowledge
  • Virtue
  • Work

Cite this