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Liberty Fund Conferences

Liberty Fund Conferences are intended to illuminate some aspect of human liberty and responsibility. These small, scholarly conferences focus on themes in economics, history, law, political thought, literature, philosophy, religion, and the natural sciences. They generally assume an interdisciplinary focus. To date, Liberty Fund has held over 3,000 in the United States and abroad. Liberty Fund conferences are attended by invitation only.

  • Co-sponsored Conferences
  • Anniversary Conferences
  • History of Liberty Fund Conferences

The conference program reflects our founder’s conviction that education in a free society requires a dialogue among active minds freely engaged in pondering the ideas that have shaped human civilization in general and the free society in particular. Mr. Goodrich believed education to be a lifelong responsibility of each individual.

Liberty Fund has concluded, from its long experience with conferences, that a Socratic discussion format is the most conducive to a full and open exploration of ideas. As a result, all Liberty Fund conferences are roundtable in nature. The exchange of ideas is facilitated by a scholar chosen to lead the discussion but who is neither a conferee nor an advocate. Readings are distributed well in advance of the conference and serve as a starting place for discussion. Liberty Fund prefers readings to be original works rather than commentaries.

The purpose of the discussions is neither to convey doctrine nor to drive home certain conclusions. Each conference challenges conferees to examine, refine, and extend their own ideas in the company of inquiring colleagues who also are interested in questions of liberty and responsibility. The conversations result in ideas that mold Liberty Fund’s program agenda and publishing philosophy for the future.

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    Conference Titles
  • Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Markets, and Liberty

  • War, Human Nature, and Power in Greek Tragedy

  • Shaftesbury, Mandeville, and Smith on Liberty, Virtue, and Prosperity

  • The Political Thought of James Madison

  • Liberty, Politics, and Literature in the Writings of Madame de Stael

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