Three Major Ethical Theories

Topics: Ethics, Morality, Immanuel Kant Pages: 3 (909 words) Published: September 13, 2012
(A)Business ethics is the critical structured examination of how people and institutions should behave in the world of commerce. In particular it involves examining appropriate constraints on the pursuit of self interest, or for firms profit maximisation when actions of individuals or firms affect others. There are many notable theories that have been put down trying to form a guideline on how to solve the problem of what is right or wrong good or bad, below are three theories I have listed: 1.Utilitarianism Ethical Theory: J. S Mill

The view of this theory is among competing alternatives one ought to do that which produces the greatest happiness overall for all concerned. A key aspect in this view is that no person’s pain or pleasure counts more or less valuable than another person’s, only quantity or intensity counts. In decide a course of action what makes something good or bad, right or wrong, is that it produces the greatest amount of pleasure or lack of pain for the greatest number of people. For example: A Zimbabwe cement company is planning to build a cement factory near a small suburb which will result in the more benefits for the company and country at large through employment and development, but this factory will emit dust that will affect and threaten death for the small town residents. The utilitarian theory will make a choice to continue to build the factory because overall the greatest number of people will be happy. The key behind this theory is such that it focuses on the results, the small number of residents can be affected to death if the greatest number of people in will be happy in Zimbabwe.

2.Deontological Ethical Theory: I. Kant
The approach of this theory is what makes something good or bad, right or wrong is that it conforms to a duty discoverable by reason. One should choose the action which best conforms to one’s recognised duties. This theory suggests that an action is right if it is in accordance with a morale rule or...
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