The Presbyterian virtue of thrift in traditional Scottish banking

Angus Robson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Thrift is a historic virtue which is enjoying a necessary revival in the context of the climate crisis and wider concerns about sustainability. Here, thrift is explored from the perspective of its traditional association with Presbyterianism in Scotland, with the aim of clarifying the concept. A review of the broad history of thrift and its connection with Protestantism is given. This is then supported by empirical data from leaders in Scottish banking gathered in the aftermath of the global financial crisis of 2007/8, which is shown as a failure of financial stewardship. The significance of thrift is discussed in relation to the views of these banking leaders and its application to contemporary problems of sustainability. Thrift emerges, not as a compulsion to save, but as a virtue which underpins justice.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFaith Traditions and Practices in the Workplace
Subtitle of host publicationThe role of religion in unprecedented times
EditorsMai Chi Vu, Nadia Singh, Nicholas Burton, Irene Chu
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9783031093494
ISBN (Print)9783031093487
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2022

Publication series

NamePalgrave Studies in Workplace Spirituality and Fulfillment
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISSN (Print)2662-3668
ISSN (Electronic)2662-3676

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