Mapping the world's opinions

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Should corporations have "morals"?

With BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Volkswagen’s emissions scandal, and Apple’s ‘batterygate’, there is no shortage of corporations behaving in a morally reprehensible way to cut costs or increase profits. Should corporations have morals? Are business ethics important? Is it a firm’s collective responsibility to behave in an ethical way?
Economics , Ethics

No, corporations shouldn't have morals

Corporations are the sum of individual decisions. They don't know right from wrong and cannot be punished. Therefore, it makes far more sense to limit morals to the individual.

Corporate morals dehumanize the individual

Once a corporation attempts to force its values on its employees, it risks dehumanizing them. Explore

Corporations depend on individual decisions

The direction and approach corporations take depends on individual decisions. Explore

Other collectives don’t have morals

Other groupings of individuals do not have morals. Therefore, corporations shouldn't be expected to have morals. Explore

Only a person can have morals

To have morals, the entity must know right from wrong and feel guilt. Explore

Corporations can’t be punished

If a corporation cannot be punished, then it doesn't make sense for it to define its morally acceptable and unacceptable behaviours. Explore

Corporations are prisoners of economic incentive

Corporations are prisoners of economics, leaving them unable to have an attitude towards social good or a conscience. Explore

Yes, corporations should have morals

Corporations are conversible agents. Their message can be different from that of the individuals that make up the corporation. They also erode individuality. Therefore, corporations must have defined morals to fill the ethical space left by the individual.

Corporations are conversable agents

Corporations are able to use their voice to convey their objectives and mission statement. Therefore, they should have morals that guide that voice. Explore

Corporations eliminate the individual

Corporations are designed to eliminate individuality in favour of uniformity. Without individual morals, the corporation must adopt a moral compass. Explore
This page was last edited on Thursday, 12 Mar 2020 at 09:01 UTC