1st Edition

Business Ethics A Contemporary Introduction

By Jeffrey Moriarty Copyright 2022
    270 Pages
    by Routledge

    270 Pages
    by Routledge

    Packed with examples, this book offers a clear and engaging overview of ethical issues in business.

    It begins with a discussion of foundational issues, including the objectivity of ethics, the content of ethical theories, and the debate between capitalism and socialism, making it suitable for the beginning student. It then examines ethical issues in business in three broad areas. The first is the market. Issues explored are what can be sold (the limits of markets) and how it can be sold (ethics in marketing). The second is work. Topics in this area are health and safety, meaningful work, compensation, hiring and firing, privacy, and whistleblowing. The third area is the firm in society. Here readers explore corporate social responsibility, corporate political activity, and the set of ethical challenges that attend international business.

    Issues are introduced through real-world examples that underscore their importance and make them come alive. Arguments for opposing positions are given fair hearings and students are encouraged to develop and defend their own views.

    Key Features

    • Introduces each topic with a real-world example, which is referenced regularly in the subsequent argument.
    • Contains a critical evaluation of capitalism and socialism, with a focus on private property, the market system, and the welfare state.
    • Explores the limits of markets and encourages students to ask what should and should not be for sale.
    • Explores the phenomena of corporate political activity and ethical consumerism.
    • Includes initial chapter overviews and – at the end of each chapter – study questions and suggested additional readings.

    1. Business, Ethics, and Business Ethics
    1.1 What is Business?
    1.2 What is Ethics?
    1.3 Business Ethics and Business Law
    1.4 Why Study Business Ethics?
    1.5 What Is This Book Meant to Do and Not Do?
    1.6 Plan of This Book
    1.7 Chapter Summary
    1.8 Study Questions

    2. Skepticism about Ethics
    2.1 Facts Versus Opinions
    2.2 Truth
    2.3 Proof
    2.4 Chapter Summary
    2.5 Study Questions

    3. Ethics: Theory and Method
    3.1 The Relevance of Ethical Theory
    3.2 Ethical Theories
    3.3 Searching for Common Ground
    3.4 A Set of Principles
    3.5 How to Make Progress
    3.6 Chapter Summary
    3.7 Study Questions

    4. Political and Economic Systems
    4.1 Capitalism Versus Socialism
    4.2 The Welfare State
    4.3 Private Versus Social Ownership of the Means of Production
    4.4 Markets Versus Planning
    4.5 Chapter Summary
    4.6 Study Questions

    5. What Can Be Sold?
    5.1 Does It Work?
    5.2 Is It Safe?
    5.3 Is It Fit for Sale?
    5.4 Chapter Summary
    5.5 Study Questions

    6. How Can It Be Sold?
    6.1 What’s Good About Advertising?
    6.2 Deception
    6.3 Persuasion
    6.4 Vulnerable Populations
    6.5 Pricing
    6.6 Chapter Summary
    7.7 Study Questions

    7. Ethics at Work, Part 1
    7.1 Working at Amazon
    7.2 Health and Safety
    7.3 Meaningful Work
    7.4 Control and Participation
    7.5 Pay
    7.6 Chapter Summary
    7.7 Study Questions

    8. Ethics at Work, Part 2
    8.1 Who Is Hired? Who Can Be Fired?
    8.2 Privacy at Work
    8.3 Whistleblowing
    8.4 Chapter Summary
    8.5 Study Questions

    9. Corporate Social Responsibility
    9.1 Understanding the Issue
    9.2 The Kind of Corporate Responsibility We Are Interested In
    9.3 Merck and River Blindness
    9.4 Milton Friedman and Shareholder Theory
    9.5 R. Edward Freeman and Stakeholder Theory
    9.6 CSR, the Shareholder/Stakeholder Debate, and Beneficence
    9.7 Relying on Corporations
    9.8 Chapter Summary
    9.9 Study Questions

    10. Business and Politics
    10.1 Varieties of Corporate Political Activity
    10.2 Corporate Political Activity that Makes the World a Better Place?
    10.3 Corporate Political Activity and Private Interests: Against and For
    10.4 Freedom of Expression
    10.5 Corporate Political Activity and Democracy: Power and Equality
    10.6 Corporate Political Activity and Democracy: Representation
    10.7 Ethical Consumerism
    10.8 Chapter Summary
    10.9 Study Questions

    11. Business Ethics Across Borders
    11.1 The Garment Industry in Bangladesh
    11.2 Cultural Relativism
    11.3 Labor Conditions
    11.4 Corruption and Bribery
    11.5 Divestment
    11.6 Chapter Summary
    11.7 Study Questions


    Jeffrey Moriarty is Professor of Philosophy at Bentley University and currently serves as Executive Director of its Hoffman Center for Business Ethics.

    "Writing with a rare combination of simplicity and depth, Moriarty covers many of the most fascinating and recalcitrant issues in business ethics. Students should read this book not merely for the instruction it provides on business ethics substance, but also because it is a model of business ethics writing. No better business ethics book exists."
    Alan Strudler, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

    "This is a refreshing introduction to business ethics, written in a reader-friendly format. It carves up the usual issues into conceptual clusters and includes well-thought out study-questions"
    Byron Kaldis, National Technical University of Athens