Constantijn van Aartsen (C.W.)

Dr. Constantijn van Aartsen is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Private Law Department of Maastricht University. He works on behalf of the Elverding Chair on Sustainable Business, Culture and Corporate Regulation.

Constantijn is an interdisciplinary researcher who focuses on questions of corporate theory, regulation, sustainability, anthropology, and political economy. His prior work (A journey into causes of corporate misbehavior) critically examined the scientific foundation of corporate law, corporate governance, and corporate social responsibility and demonstrated that these disciplines are unable to achieve more than suboptimal results because of shortcomings in the structure of their scientific analysis.

Constantijn recently completed a draft for a second book, titled Why economics will never make firms sustainable (and an alternative which might): The scientific foundation and limits of economic theories of the firm. The book explains that the scientific foundation of economics is incompatible with the pursuit of sustainability, and shows that we will be unable to make our societies sustainable if we continue to rely on economics to guide the mobilisation of money, people, and resources.  The book also provides an alternative conceptual framework (the Generative State) that we can use to replace economics and think sustainably about typically economic phenomena such as firms, exchange, and markets. It includes a new theory of value (generative theory of value) and a novel approach to policy-making and regulation (marketecture), and leads overall to a sustainable reconceptualisation of the role of business in society. 


, which explores how reliance on economic science in corporate regulation is contributing towards economic disembedding and unsustainability. It demonstrates how we can transcend the limits of capitalism and shift towards a political economy which makes it possible to balance economic and non-economic concerns.