James H Martin, Mariah C Webinger
Fair Wage: An Analysis of Executive Compensation through the Lens of Catholic Social Teaching
The controversy surrounding executive compensation has received attention in the popular press and in academic literature. We explore executive compensation through the lens of Catholic Social Teaching (CST). First, we discuss fairness of executive compensation through an economic perspective and a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) perspective. Next we outline the basic principles of CST and compare and contrast them with CSR. We identify human dignity as opposed to profit maximization to be the differentiator between the two. Next, we use CST to develop a model for measuring excessive executive compensation. We propose a cluster analysis of our measure of excessive compensation with other CST variables, such as environmental performance and the primacy of labor over capital. We conclude with open questions for discussion.