Rethinking the Social Responsibility of Business

Topics: Social responsibility, Corporate social responsibility, Sociological terms Pages: 2 (765 words) Published: June 11, 2013
John Ferguson
BMGT 2216
Rethinking the Social Responsibility of Business
The ethical issues presented in this case are the different views that each individual has on how the idea of corporate social responsibility (CSR). This dispute is between Mr. Milton Friedman, John Mackey, and T.J. Rodgers; all of which has a different outlook on CSR. The definition of CSR refers to the responsibilities that business has to the society in which it operates and to those actions that a business can be held accountable. Most philosophers have come up with three different types of responsibilities that corporations can be held accountable for. The first and most important of the three is a corporation’s duty to not cause harm. If a corporation can avoid causing harm to society and consumers then they are almost obliged to do so even if it is not required by law. The second responsibility is the responsibility to prevent harm. In this situation a business would have the responsibility to prevent harm even if they were not the cause of this harm. Thirdly there is the responsibility to do good, which would involve charity work and volunteering.

Now that we have gone over the three types of responsibilities that a corporation can use, let’s talk about the three different models that these responsibilities can fall under. First is the Philanthropic model that suggests that a business has no strict obligation to contribute to social causes; but it can be a good thing when they do so. Second is the Social Web Model that views a business as a citizen to society itself. This model requires a corporation to adhere to the normal ethical duties and obligations that we all face. Finally there is the Integrative Model were a business fully integrates economic and social goals at the core of their business models. All the participants had an opinion on which model or type of responsibility a corporation or business would have when it came to CSR.

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