Traditionally, books on business ethics focus on CSR, companies’ relations with their stakeholders, and corporate citizenship. More recently, green credentials and sustainability have been added to that agenda. Unconventionally, this book argues that business ethics are basic to running business, not a separate subject. They are inherent to the governance and management of every organization, not an optional exercise in corporate citizenship. Business ethics concern behaviour in business and the behaviour of business. Decisions at every level in a company have ethical implications – strategically in the board room, managerially throughout the organization, and operationally in all of its activities.
The use, and sometimes the abuse, of corporate power, the process of corporate governance, raises ethical issues. Business involves risk-taking, whether decisions are at the strategic, managerial, or operational level. Exposure to ethical risk needs to be part of every organization’s strategy formulation, policy making, and enterprise risk management.
Designed to be read by both undergraduates and postgraduates, this book is a primer on ethics in business. It is also relevant to ethics courses that are now part of many legal, accountancy and other professional examinations. The book is not about moral philosophy, nor does it prescribe appropriate standards of behaviour or recommend economic, legal or political solutions. Rather it enables readers to recognize ethical issues in business, to respond appropriately, and to embed ethics in business processes. The book not only considers what business ethics are, and why they are important, but offers practical approaches on how to develop a successful corporate ethics culture.
Table of Contents
Part I: Business Ethics – Principles 1. Business Ethics Affects Everyone 2. The Evolution of Business Ethics 3. On Corporate Social Responsibility 4. Business Ethics and Corporate Governance 5. Business Ethics and Risk Management Part II: Business Ethics – Practice 6. Creating a Sound Ethics Culture 7. Uniting Business Ethics, Governance and Risk 8. Business Ethics in Finance 9. Ethics in Business Operations 10. Business Ethics and Employees 11. Business Ethics, Society and the State 12. The Future of Business Ethics
Dr R. I. (Bob) Tricker was a chartered accountant, an officer in the Royal Navy, and financial controller of an industrial company, before studying at the Harvard Business School and becoming a Research Fellow at Oxford University. He was Professor of Information Systems at Warwick University, then Director of the Oxford Centre for Management (now the Saïd Business School) for a decade, before being appointed Professor of Finance at the University of Hong Kong. His books include The Independent Director (1978), Corporate Governance (1984), the first book with that title, The Economist Essential Director (5th edition, 2003) and Corporate Governance – principles, policies and practices (2nd edition, 2012). He currently holds visiting professorships at two Hong Kong Universities.
Gretchen Tricker BA, MBA has been a researcher, journalist, and managing editor of a women’s style magazine in Hong Kong. Subsequently, she was Senior Research Officer in the University of Hong Kong, and deputy-editor of Corporate Governance - an international review. She wrote Shares in Hong Kong, the centennial history of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (1991).
This is profoundly important and adroitly written book in business ethics and corporate governance. Bob and Gretchen Tricker offer an invaluable map for readers to navigate the critical issues surrounding the subject. This book is full of reflective insights, vivid case illustrations, and well-informed analyses. This is a particularly important reading in the field of business because the authors have taken an unconventional approach by arguing that business ethics should be fundamental to business and not merely voluntary efforts to decorate the annual reports. And that makes this book an essential reading for both seasoned and aspiring leaders.
Professor Alan Kai Ming AU, Associate Dean and Professor, Lee Shau Kee School of Business and Administration, The Open University of Hong Kong
Business Ethics: A Stakeholder, Governance and Risk approach is a mine of timely and relevant thinking with a hands-on approach on practical problems that current organizations face. Prompted by the numerous and infamous ethical breakdowns of the last two decades, the book highlights the thin red line holding together business ethics, governance, accountability and finance. The authors’ endeavour represents a beginning not an end and is the base from which all with an interest in governance and ethics of corporations should start. I wish I had encountered this book earlier.
Amedeo Pugliese, Lecturer, School of Accountancy, QUT Business School, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
The Trickers have written a masterpiece and I am very happy with the textbook, as a lecturer. And I highly recommend this book to any graduate program in business.
Professor Gregg Li, Adjunct Professor of Corporate Governance, Hong Kong Baptist University
This text aims to integrate ethics into everyday business, which is an imperative for business students and practitioners alike. The book is replete with relevant exercises and dilemmas to make the reader think critically about ethical issues. It is very contemporary in covering recent events, such as the Libor and the latest insider trading scandals.
Dr Eleanor O'Higgins, University College, Dublin, Quinn Business School
This authoritative work demonstrates how business decision making is invariably a moral exercise. Ethics are integral to the way business is conducted, not an afterthought. The book illustrates dramatically the ethical risks inherent in all forms of business activity including strategy, operations and reporting. The work navigates through the many ethical dilemmas facing managers, and convincingly directs the reader to the safe harbour of a sound ethical framework. This book will be indispensible both to business students and practicing managers.
Professor Thomas Clarke, Director, Centre for Corporate Governance, UTS Sydney