Business Ethics

In this module we have explored the various ways that ethical decisions are experienced, mediated, and managed in the contemporary workplace and the society at large. A number of different policies and procedures are employed to attempt to manage ethical behaviour in organizations today. Given the expansive nature of management in contemporary society, business ethics places demands not only on our behaviour as employees and managers, but more broadly as citizens. These demands play an important role in creating the basis of moral selfhood, helping to shape people’s motivations and actions.

Business ethics and corporate social responsibility represent what Levy and Kaplan (2009) describe as a “contested terrain” where ethical and political issues are worked out. They form the space where concerns raised by civil society actors are responded to by business, both offering new possibilities for democratic problem-solving and enhanced corporate accountability; on the other hand, these new CSR initiatives may threaten to bring about a privatization of governance, enhancing corporate power vis-à-vis nation states and their citizens.

Examining the case that your group presented in December, please write a 3,000 word essay.

1) Describe the history of your case. What is the situation? What are the economic, social, and political factors at work?

2) Identify 2-3 key stakeholder groups that are involved in this case. What roles do they play? How are they affected? What particular roles does the campaign / corporation play? What motivated this initiative in the first place? What role do civic organizations and NGOs play?

3) Drawing from relevant ethical theory explored in the module, explore the nature of the ethical conflict or disagreement that is involved. What kinds of ethical demands does the case place on the people who are involved in it? Are there competing or conflicting moral imperatives to be considered? If so, is it possible to find a balance between them? What does this case show us about the management of business ethics today?

This is a research paper and, as such, should follow academic standards of writing. You may wish to use popular news items and other web-based resources in your research (i.e. company websites, CSR Reports; civil society organisations’ websites, etc.). You should, however, reference academic articles from management journals to analyze your case; these may be resources which you locate through your own independent research, .

The coursework should fulfil the following formal criteria:
• It should include Harvard style in-text references for all cited works, and a list of references at the end of the text,
• It should be spellchecked and grammar-checked.