IJMB Journal – Abstracts
International Journal of Management and Business
IJMB Volume VII, Issue 2
The Renewed Case for Business Ethics: Ethics and Capitalism
Eddy M. Souffrant
Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, UNC Charlotte, Charlotte, NC, USA.
E-mail: Eddy Souffrant
This paper explores some foundational issues lodged at the intersection of ethics and capitalism to make the case that a disregard for social responsibility is an oversight, even if at times an intentional oversight. The paper understands capitalism to be an economic system that operates within a largely social and political environment. It also understands capitalism to be a system in which the production and distribution of goods are operated by and held, for the most part, in private hands. As a matter of course, capitalist agents (singular or collective) interact and exchange goods through markets and they do so for their own benefit (profit). If this model of capitalism were complete, we would not be concerned about the place or role of ethics in this particular context of interaction. The rules or laws of the market would be all that we might want to contend with in order to conduct our capitalist affairs. Unfortunately for the market purist (those who might combat the place of a normative code of conduct in the exchange game), the exchanges, and the profit that motivates them do not take place in a vacuum. They instead are realized in social and political contexts and involve human interactions. These two areas (contexts and participants) alone engender a caution about human behavior that only moral philosophy is equipped to monitor.
Keywords: Business Ethics, Compliance, Hudbay Mineral Inc., Cultural Diversity, Ethics and Globalization, Moral Experts.