Luigino Bruni Vita 250Luigino Bruni

"Nothing has more value than an act of gratuitousness"

e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

see my homepage - see my books - go to PDF archive - go to videos archive

You will find some of my articles and comments here on my blog:

Go to my Biblical series:  

Greater than GuiltThe Dawn of Midnight Listening to life - Nacked Questions - A Man named Job - The Midwifes of Egypt

Go to my other series: 

Narrative Capitals - On the border and beyond - The Voices of the Days - Regenerations - The Great Transition

The blessing of the acorns

Surpluses and misalignments/3 - You may leave as a son and return as a father and mother

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 16/09/2018

Eccedenze e disallineamenti 03 ridHe had the docility of wood. He was no longer a walking tree, as the blind man of Bethsaida had revealed to him, now he was planted in the ground and all his steps taken ended there with his feet joined and arms wide open like branches. Golgotha is a skinned hill, without vegetation. On its top now a man-tree sprang, grafted in blood.

Erri De Luca, Indagine su un falegname (“A Study on a Carpenter”; rough translation)

Throughout their existence, people develop many more dimensions than those useful to the community in which they live and grow. Because the "task" we have to perform in the world always exceeds the institutional mission of our organization or community, which remains smaller, however great and extraordinary it may be. No institution is bigger than a single person, because while the collective intelligence of a group or community can solve cognitive problems that are much more complex and richer than those that the individual intelligence can see and think about, the soul of a person is increasingly more complex and richer than the "soul" of the community.

Read more ...

Peacebuilders for the EoC

Beyond the market - A surprising encounter with an association that has made one of Chiara Lubich's dreams, the Economy of Communion its own

by Luigino Bruni

published in Città Nuova, August 2018

Costruttori di pace ridFlorence, 28 June, San Lorenzo Church. In the rooms below the church, the Associazione Costruttori di pace (Association of Peacebuilders) presented their nascent enterprise of 'street food’ to an audience of about forty people. I had met them a few months earlier, when they invited me so they could tell me about their interest, or 'passion' (as they like to say), for the Economy of Communion (EoC). An association created by young people to meet the needs of other young migrants who, once they reach 18 years of age, find themselves in a situation of serious vulnerability. They first began to welcome them into the homes of some of them, then they rented an apartment, and now they have created a reception facility in the parish premises.

Read more ...

Community: an experience of returning

Surpluses and misalignments/2 - Go, get infected and renew the alliance

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 09/09/2018

Eccedenze e disallineamenti 02 ridCoi vecchi nostri canti che sai, voci di cose piccole e care, t’addormiremo, vecchio; e potrai ricominciare.
E quando il mare, nella tua sera, mesto nell’ombra manda il suo grido, sciogliere ancora potrai la nera nave dal lido.
Vedrai le terre de’ tuoi ricordi, del tuo patire dolce e remoto

Giovanni Pascoli Il ritorno

At the heart of each person there is a mystery that is revealed, and only in part, during the whole of life, not infrequently in its last part. Even people with many talents, even those who are truly brilliant, find themselves in a state of partial and imperfect knowledge of their own "charisma", their untapped potential, their self-deception and past and present illusions. Therefore, when a person encounters a voice that calls them and their life undergoes a radical turn, if they respond and begin to walk they do not and cannot know what the development of that encounter will bring, what its fruits, pains and great surprises will be. In a marriage, in an artistic or religious vocation, the wonderful part is the unknown and infinite potential. We do not know what we will become, what the other we tie ourselves to will become, what our relationship will become. What God will become.

Read more ...

How the female gaze can change the economy

Why we should start again from common goods and relational goods. From economist Luigino Bruni’s talk he gave on the second day of the World Meeting of Families in Dublin.

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 23/08/2018

Famiglia Avvenire ridEconomy is a word of ancient Greek origins that refers directly to the house (oikosnomos, rules for managing the house), therefore to the family. Yet modern economy – and its contemporary version even more so – has been thought of as an area governed by different principles, distinct and in many ways opposed to the principles and values that have always held up and continue to hold up the family. A founding principle of the family, perhaps the first and the one underlying the others, is that of gratuitousness, which is the furthest away from capitalist economy that only knows surrogates of gratuitousness (discounts, philanthropy, sales) that play the role of immunizing the markets from real gratuitousness.

Read more ...

The many colours of the swan

Surpluses and misalignments/1 - Infinity is the value that leads beyond fear

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 02/09/2018

Eccedenze e disallineamenti 01 ridBlack Swan logic makes what you don't know far more relevant than what you do know.

Nassim N. Taleb The Black Swan

The "black swan" is that highly improbable event with very relevant effects whose arrival could be neither foreseen nor explained on the basis of the facts of the past. The expression comes from the discovery of black swans in Australia, which disproved the thesis that had been considered certain: "all swans are white". In fact, the black swan is the great enemy of companies and organizations, too, because of its potentially devastating effects.

Read more ...

An immense purity is what remains in the end

Greater Than Guilt/31 - You can be "king" if you don't stop being a son

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 19/08/2018

Piu grandi della colpa 31 rid«Io non vivo in me ma fuori
Io sono manchevole io faccio
continuamente errori
Non so perché forse non più degli altri
Ma a me pare di farne di più…
Oh fuori ci sono gli alberi
Ci sono gli uccelli e i fiori..»

Nicola Gardini, Io non vivo in me ma fuori

“Now these are the last words of David: »...The Spirit of the Lord speaks by me; / his word is on my tongue. ... [he] has said to me: When one rules justly over men, / ruling in the fear of God, / he dawns on them like the morning light, / like the sun shining forth on a cloudless morning, / like rain that makes grass to sprout from the earth«” (2 Samuel 23:1-4). Although David will still speak in the Bible (in the First Book of Kings), for the Books of Samuel these are "David's last words"; they are like a testament. Here King David speaks as a prophet, as one who has received a new language to announce (in his case even sing) the word of YHWH - and he will finish the book as a priest. The author knows that we too, having reached the end of his life, can testify that David did speak some different and higher words than his or our own. He spoke them by mixing them up with words that were low, lower and more cowardly than ours; but in David God spoke precisely from the wounds of his ambivalent humanity.

Read more ...

He isn’t only the God of the strong

Greater than Guilt/30 - The last chapter often brings about a different time

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 12/08/2018

Piu grandi della colpa 30 rid“Moses then saw how God wrote the word ‘long-suffering’ in the Torah, and asked: »Does this mean that Thou hast patience with the pious?« But God answered: »Nay, with sinners also am I long-suffering.« »What!« exclaimed Moses, »Let the sinners perish!« God said no more.”

Louis Ginzberg, The Legends of the Jews (English translation by Paul Radin)

Even in the greatest stories, there comes a last chapter. Sometimes it is the most beautiful one, but it is always the distillate of the whole of life. But while in novels the good reader knows how to identify the moment when the story line suffers the last twist and is about to end, when we try to read the book that we are writing, we are almost never able to grasp the moment of the beginning of decline, and change. That’s because we simply love life and its words too much, and because we love illusions too much. And that’s why the last page often takes us by surprise, because we have been unable to insert it in the last chapter, which would have given it rhythm and meaning. We lose the plot of the story, and sometimes we get lost.

Read more ...

The Mother’s Gesture Is Like Leaven

Greater than Guilt/29 - Always reminding us that every son is a son of all

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 05/08/2018

Piu grandi della colpa 29 rid“In Heaven she is sure to find your mother again, and she is also sure to find your other grandmother. Donna Maria Vincenza assured me that if the Eternal Father does not take you directly under his protection, the three of them will raise such protests that Paradise will become a true hell...

Ignazio Silone, Il seme sotto la neve (Seed Beneath the Snow - rough translation)

Many pathologies of the Judeo-Christian religions and of the Western civilization which originated from them are a direct consequence of the marriage created between faith and economy. The understanding of sin as debt is at the origin and heart of biblical humanism, which has determined a mercantile vision of religion and salvation. And when the debit-credit logic extends from earth to heaven, a perhaps more abstract organization of our financial capitalism takes shape.

Read more ...

The Word of Peace Is Feminine

Greater than Guilt/28 - It would be nice to see history through mothers'eyes

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 29/07/2018

Piu grandi della colpa 28 ridThe grand-vizir himself was the father of two daughters, of whom the elder was called Scheherazade, and the younger Dinarzade. (...) One day, when the grand-vizir was talking to his eldest daughter, who was his delight and pride, Scheherazade said to him, “Father, ...I am determined to stop this barbarous practice of the Sultan's, and to deliver the girls and mothers from the awful fate that hangs over them.”

The Thousand and One Nights (The Arabian Nights Entertainments, English version by Andrew Lang)

Words can kill, but they can also ward off death. The first enemy of Tanathos is Logos. As long as we still have something to tell, we can postpone death’s arrival by a day, and, perhaps, when she arrives because we've finished our story, we'll find that we still have a story to tell, and it is the one for her.

Read more ...

God Stands by the Victims

Greater than Guilt/27 - Let’s learn to find God where he isn’t supposed to be

by Luigino Bruni

published in Avvenire on 22/07/2018

Piu grandi della colpa 27“I will not urge thee, - no nor, if thou yet shouldst have the mind, wouldst thou be welcome as a worker with me. Nay, be what thou wilt; but I will bury him... But if thou wilt, be guilty of dishonouring laws which the gods have stablished in honour.”

Sophocles , Antigone (English translation by R. C. Jebb)

The story that Samuel's books tell us is a succession of murders, fratricides, incest, rapes and brutal violence. YHWH, the protagonist of many biblical pages, here seems to stand away from the fray, observing the spectacle of death offered to him by people. Yet the Bible, in all its books, continues to speak to us about God, containing his words and his Word. But where? And how?

Read more ...

Children of the World, Our Children

Every young person is the son or daughter of everyone, not just his or her parents. Every child born is an inhabitant of the earth, and therefore my neighbour. Europe was founded on this natural and Christian law. Following the example of Abraham and Sarah.

by Luigino Bruni

published in Messaggero di sant'Antonio on 11/07/2018

Figlidelmondo MSA luglio ridRecently I’ve been to Spain (Valencia), visiting a reception centre for immigrants (Dorothy Day), where some entrepreneurs of the Economy of Communion are trying to create jobs for young people coming mainly from Africa. In the spontaneous dialogue that was formed someone asked about ten of those young people, all around the age of 20: "What are your dreams?” "To be a mechanic", "a plumber", "a seamstress"..., they answered. As I listened to their words, often mixed with tears (theirs and ours), I understood once again that every young person is the son or daughter of everyone, not just his or her parents. Every child is my child, too, every child that is born is an inhabitant of the earth, and therefore my neighbour. My neighbour is not my geographical, religious or ethnic neighbour: this is one of the great teachings of the parable of the Good Samaritan.

Read more ...

Logo booster camp rid mod

 Call for projects by Feb 28, 2018 - more info - Download brochure

Follow us:

facebook twitter vimeo icon youtubeicon flickr


EoC Report 2016

Cover Edc44 EN mod

download the report 
go to the Report online

EoC PanAsian Congress 2016

The Dawn of Midnight

Logo Geremia Crop 150The series of comments by Luigino Bruni on Jeremiah's book comes out every Sunday on Avvenire

Go to the complete series

new tab icon 32291 Simply Life

Join the EoC

EoC Companies crop banner rid modBy registering your company on the following site:

Find out more...

EoC, the web site!

Video EoC Summer School Prague 2015

150826 Praga EoC SS 11 rid sx"Let’s create our future! It is in our hands!"

Videos available here

Icona Flickr ridsee photogallery
facebook nsl see on Facebook

A Lexicon of Social Well-Being

A Lexicon of social well being ridLuigino Bruni

Palgrave Pivot, April 2015


Luigino Bruni’s articles and video

The Vocabulary of Good Social Life

Logo nuovo lessico rid modThe "words" of the New Vocabulary from the editorials of each Sunday published in Avvenire by Luigino Bruni

Communion - 09/02/2014
- 02/02/2014
- 26/01/2014
- 19/01/2014
- 12/01/2014
- 05/01/2014
- 29/12/2013
- 22/12/2013
 - 15/12/2013
Market - 08/12/2013
Common Goods - 01/12/2013
Cooperation - 24/11/2013
Experience Goods - 17/11/2013
A Critical Point - 10/11/2013
Types of Capital - 03/11/2013
Poverty - 27/10/2013
Relational Goods - 20/10/2013
Goods- 13/10/2013
Wealth - 06/10/2013
A New Vocabulary - 29/09/2013

The Wound and the Blessing

Wound blessingLuigino Bruni

Economics, Relationships, and Happiness

New City Press, 2012


United Nations Video

This short video was shot in occasion of the EoC presentation in the February 2012 UN Conference on Poverty Eradication.


Video - EoC in 5 words

video Eoc 5 words mod

Presentation by Luigino Bruni to the Faculty of the Ateneo De Manila University. Manila, Philippines, September 23, 2011

Guidelines for conducting an EoC business

Binari_rid_modThe Economy of Communion proposes the following "Guidelines for conducting a business", to productive organizations who adhere to its message and its culture, written in the light of the life and thought of thousands of entrepreneurs and workers....

The Genesis and Ethos of the Market

The Genesis and Ethos of the market ridLuigino Bruni

Palgrave Macmillan, September 2012


The economy of giving

Chiara_Lubich_1Chiara Lubich

«Unlike the consumerist economy, based on a culture of having, the economy of communion is the economy of giving.... 

Avvenire Editorials

RSS - subscribe

This website uses “technical cookies”, including third parties cookies, which are necessary to optimise your browsing experience. By closing this banner, or by continuing to navigate this site, you are agreeing to our cookies policy. The further information document describes how to deactivate the cookies.