Chapter 2: The Role of Ethics in Decision Making
Contemporary Business Ethics
Ethics and Society
Public Education and Family Structure
News Media and the Internet
The Nature of Ethics
Ethics and Morality
Morality- the collection of values that guides our behavior. b.
Ethics- a systematic statement of right and wrong together with a philosophical system that both justifies and necessitates rules of conduct. c.
The Good- the end result of ethical examination.
Ethics and Law
Both consist of rules to guide conduct and foster social cooperation and with what is right and wrong. b.
Ethical values are ultimately superior to law in ensuring responsible business behavior. III.
Two Systems of Ethics
Formalism- an approach to ethics that affirms an absolute morality. b.
Duty- moral obligation
Categorical Imperative- (Kant) says that you have a moral duty to act in the way you believe everyone should act. d.
Social Contract Theory- how to construct a just society given the many inequalities of wealth, knowledge, and social status. 2.
Consequentialism- the moral consequences of actions rather than with the morality of the actions themselves. b.
Utilitarianism- judges actions by usefulness, by whether they serve to increase the common good, the dominant form of consequentialism. c.
Protestant Ethic- the current focus on consequentialism in business ethics is due to the decline in business life. IV.
Sources of Values for Business Ethics
In our society ethical values frequently become law and that legal regulation can reflect society’s ethical values. b.
5 Major Ethical Rules
Respect for the liberty and rights of others
The importance of acting in good faith
The importance of exercising due care
The importance of honoring confidentiality
Avoidance of conflicts of interest
Professional Codes of Ethics
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