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Business Ethics and Ethical Business

Robert Audi

Publication Date - August 2008

ISBN: 9780195369106

176 pages
5 1/2 X 8 1/4 inches

In Stock

"A virtuoso performance by one of the most distinguished scholars in the field of business ethics."--Edwin M. Hartman, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University


Business Ethics and Ethical Business is a brief yet remarkably comprehensive introduction to the thought-provoking field of business ethics. The text is organized into three parts that cover the role of business in society, the ethics of internal management, and the challenges of international business. It introduces the standards essential in business ethics, explores a wide range of issues using concrete examples, and provides analytical tools for guiding ethical decisions in the real world.


* Includes an appendix containing sixteen short case scenarios modeled on ethical problems in business; these studies are keyed to relevant chapters and designed to stimulate class discussion and provide material for essay assignments
* Introduces central ethical theories including Aristotle's virtue ethics, Kant's rule-based ethics, Mill's utilitarianism, and Ross's common-sense pluralism
* Introduces a set of principles comprising a decision framework for conducting business ethically
* Examines the two main competing views of business in a democratic society--the free market view and the corporate social responsibility approach
* Considers both large companies and small, family-owned businesses
* Includes a glossary of many key terms in business ethics

Business Ethics and Ethical Business is ideal for undergraduate or MBA courses, as either a standalone text or a companion to an anthology or selected case studies. Every chapter is self-contained, so the text can be used in whole or in part and in long or short courses.


"Business Ethics and Ethical Business is philosophically sophisticated and yet written in admirably clear prose. This is a virtuoso performance by one of the most distinguished scholars in the field of business ethics."--Edwin M. Hartman, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University

"As we have come to expect of Audi's work, the reasoning and style contained in Business Ethics and Ethical Business has the 'triple-barrels' of richness, insightfulness, and clarity."--Mitchell R. Haney, University of North Florida

"This elegant and concise introduction to business ethics examines business as a practice that sits at the nexus of democratic values, free market values, and individual and community conceptions of the good life."--Joanne B. Ciulla, University of Richmond

"Audi cuts away the fluff and gives his reader the essentials without unnecessary embellishment."--Peter Madsen, Carnegie Mellon University

Table of Contents

    1. Two Democratic Traditions
    Foundations of Capitalism
    Two Conceptions of Democracy
    2. The Rights and Social Responsibilities of Business
    The Moral Rights of Businesses
    A Proposal for Justifying Inequalities in Free Democracies
    Determining Ethical Obligations: Some Major Approaches
    Ethical Obligation and Legal Requirements
    3. The Constituencies of Ethical Business
    Limitations of Ownership Rights
    The Interests of Stockholders
    The Multiple-Constituency View of the Corporation
    Constituents as "Stakeholders"
    4. A Framework for Making Ethical Decisions
    Common-Sense Ethical Principles
    A Five-Step Model for Making Difficult Ethical Decisions
    5. Ethical Business, Environmental Responsibility, and Sustainability
    The Value of the Environment
    The Ethical Importance of Future Generations
    The Ideal of Sustainability
    6. Marketing: Product, Target, and Image
    Some Major Dimensions of Marketing Ethics
    Five Types of Ethical Problems in Marketing
    Insincerity, Deception, and Manipulation in Marketing
    Advertising and the Limits of Persuasive Representation
    The Ethics of Creating Desire
    The Interdependence of Marketing and Manufacturing Decisions
    Advertising and the Human Image
    7. The Ethics of Financial Representation
    The Centrality of Accounting in Capitalist Democracies
    The Public Representation of Financial Positions
    Judgment, Clarity, and Conflicts of Interest in Accounting
    8. Hiring Policies and Compensation Standards
    Preferential Hiring and Affirmative Action
    Rationales for Affirmative Action
    Promotion and Remuneration
    Qualifications and Merit
    Executive Compensation
    An Approach to Fairness in CEO Compensation
    9. Conditions of Employment and Codes of Ethics
    Safety, Risk, and Informed Consent
    Healthcare Obligations and Responsibilities
    Privacy in Employment
    Private Lives and the Movable Workplace
    Company Codes and Mission Statements
    10. Religion in the Workplace
    Church-State Separation as a Starting Point in Employment
    Some Applications to Managerial Policy Questions
    Religion in Large Public Companies
    Demonstrative Affiliation in Employment
    11. Managerial Leadership and Corporate Culture
    Corporate Culture, Ethos, and Ethics
    Managerial Hierarchy and Its Limitations
    Leadership Versus Power
    Ethical Leadership and Leadership in Ethics
    Meaningful Work and the Creation of Value
    12. International Trade and Cross-Cultural Standards
    Intercultural Understanding
    Child Labor
    Gift-Giving in Business
    Gift-Giving Versus Bribery
    13. Nationality, International Business Ethics, and Cosmopolitanism
    Cultural Adaptation, Relativity, and Standards of Negotiation
    Ethical Limits in Negotiation Strategies
    The Relation Between Ethics and Law
    Intellectual Property, Technology Transfer, and Porous Borders
    Ethics and Law in International Business
    International Cooperation and Cosmopolitanism
    14. Conclusion
    Brief Case Scenarios

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