Today, being designated a ‘good company’ entails not only striving for continuity and profitability, but also having an eye on integrity and social responsibility. Companies are increasingly called to account on their role in society and their environmental impacts. Public debates and stakeholder dialogues on these issues abound. Societies are becoming more complex, and companies are constantly confronted with new dilemmas, resulting from new scientific and technological developments and globalisation.
Ethics & Business describes and analyses these developments from an ethical perspective, involving comprehensive casuistry. Strategies and tools are discussed that help businesses improve the ethical quality of their decision making, such as integrity training and social and ethical audits. The book offers a fundamental framework for understanding the recent developments in integrity management and corporate social responsibility and how to put these into practice.
In 2002, Ethics & Business won the J.J.F. van den Bergh Prize for best book in applied behavioural science. The jury wrote:
“In spite of its complex subject matter, the book’s pleasant writing style and the inclusion of easily recognisable examples make it very readable. Ethics & Business is highly recommended to every entrepreneur who, as any entrepreneur should, engages in self-reflection and reflection on the business’ actions from time to time. This type of book should be part of every self- and society-respecting company’s library.”
This English edition is based on the sixth Dutch edition, that was completely updated and revised in 2006.
Ronald Jeurissen is professor of Business Ethics at Nyenrode Business Universiteit.
Foreword to the English Edition 1
Part 1 Principles
1 Business ethics and corporate social responsibility 1.1 Society demands corporate responsibility 1.2 The business ethics perspective 1.3 Ethics and profit 1.4 Is legislation not enough? 1.5 Corporate social responsibility
2 Moral responsibility in organisations 2.1 Definition of moral responsibility 2.2 Factors influencing moral responsibility within the organisation 2.3 Managing responsibility 2.4 The moral responsibility of organisations
3 Integrity 3.1 Integrity and trust 3.2 Integrity as a professional responsibility 3.3 Managing integrity
4 Values and moral norms in organisations 4.1 Values, virtues and moral norms 4.2 Moral principles 4.3 Moral rights 4.4 Justice 4.5 Utilitarian ethics 4.6 Conflicting moral principles 4.7 Moral dilemmas 4.8 Care 4.9 Are moral judgements subjective?
5 Corporate social responsibility and strategy 5.1 Corporate social responsibility or profit maximisation? 5.2 Competitive strategies for corporate social responsibility
6 Business stakeholders 6.1 Economic and social stakeholders 6.2 Stakeholders and governance 6.3 Stakeholder dialogue and co-operation
Part 2 Applications
7 Responsibility towards consumers 7.1 Product responsibility 7.2 Consumer growth (but not in a good way) 7.3 Advertising and ethics
8 Responsibility towards and of employees 8.1 Established employee core rights 8.2 Employer and employee responsibilities 8.3 Responsibility towards employees in case of job insecurity and redundancy
9 Environmental responsibility 9.1 Phases in environmental management 9.2 The environment and self-interest 9.3 Aims of environmental policy 9.4 The limited regulatory power of the government and the market 9.5 Corporate self-direction 9.6 Collective responsibility towards sustainability
10 Handling corruption and gifts 10.1 Corruption: a world wide problem 10.2 Morally wrong and illegal 10.3 Bribery, extortion, grease payment or gift? 10.4 How can companies fight corruption?
11 Ethics and international business 11.1 Western businesses and developing countries 11.2 Doing business in other cultures 11.3 Business and human rights 11.4 A theoretical framework for international business ethics
12 Investors and the need for openness and transparency 12.1 The growing interest in ethics and investment 12.2 Different investors, different information needs 12.3 The development of responsible investment
13 Organising ethics 13.1 Approaches to making employees act responsibly 13.2 Codes of conduct 13.3 Social accountability
Cases ‘Obviously… a major malfunction’ 32 Whistleblowing in the European Commission 37 A cold winter 54 Nuon’s CO2-emission rights 80 Eastern line dilemma 82 Islamic feasts 83 Caught in the act 89 The Ford Pinto 98 Child labour, the Socialist Party and IKEA 103 SBM Offshore in Burma 103 Cheapest is best? 107 Good citizenship at Fuji Photo Film 110 The consulting panel for urban renewal 110 C&A and responsibilities in the supply chain 113 NS wants to have its cake and eat it 115 Unilever plays Santa 120 Shell’s social commitment in Nigeria 124 Mondragon: a democratic experiment 130 NAM sets up internet dialogue about the future 134 Nuon’s social dialogue 134 ABN-Amro and palm oil 134 IKEA and Unicef rally against child labour 135 Okay oranges 137 Misleading advertisement for Priority Telecom 152 The Vespa buzz 155 Ban on football shirts sponsored by beer brands 156 Dumpjeschatje.nl is shocking and improper 157 Nike claims underground station 163 Dove: debate as a marketing tool 164 The black box 176 Renault-Vilvoorde: reversing a disaster 180 Gulpener beer: an example of individual self-regulation 193 Marine Stewardship Council 194 Handling gifts 209 Female textile worker from Bangladesh 212 Taboo on women in business 213 The Ogoni and Shell 213 TNT and the UN fighting hunger 220 Why Heineken did not invest in Burma 229 DBCP: a pesticide hard to control 237