Are we making progress in international business ethics?

Are we making progress in international business ethics? Purpose – The internationalisation of business and the process of globalisation raise many ethical issues about acceptable norms of conduct on the part of corporations. This article aims to evaluate whether there is progress in establishing standards for international business ethics. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores whether the case for a global standard of business conduct can be grounded and justified in rational argument. Findings – As a moral minimum, corporate ethical codes need to rule out what the management believes to be clearly unacceptable behaviour. The distinction between thick and thin moral rules is particularly important in wrestling with the rights and wrongs of international business ethics. A good deal of room needs to exist for the local interpretation of these codes, but there are a number of situations where universal standards have to be enforced in the host country. Originality/value – This paper summarises the progress made in establishing the field of international business ethics. And it identifies and discusses the evidence on the effectiveness of ethical codes in improving international business practice. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Humanomics Emerald Publishing

Are we making progress in international business ethics?

Humanomics, Volume 27 (3): 13 – Aug 30, 2011

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0828-8666
DOI
10.1108/08288661111165240
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The internationalisation of business and the process of globalisation raise many ethical issues about acceptable norms of conduct on the part of corporations. This article aims to evaluate whether there is progress in establishing standards for international business ethics. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores whether the case for a global standard of business conduct can be grounded and justified in rational argument. Findings – As a moral minimum, corporate ethical codes need to rule out what the management believes to be clearly unacceptable behaviour. The distinction between thick and thin moral rules is particularly important in wrestling with the rights and wrongs of international business ethics. A good deal of room needs to exist for the local interpretation of these codes, but there are a number of situations where universal standards have to be enforced in the host country. Originality/value – This paper summarises the progress made in establishing the field of international business ethics. And it identifies and discusses the evidence on the effectiveness of ethical codes in improving international business practice.

Journal

HumanomicsEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 30, 2011

Keywords: Ethics; Global; Codes of conduct; International corporations; Relativism; Global compact; International business; Globalization; Business ethics

References

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