Positioning business ethics in relation to management and political philosophy

Journal of Business Ethics 24 (3):257 - 272 (2000)
This paper attempts to mediate between the extremes of a managerial conception of business ethics which subordinates it to management and a political conception which subordinates it to political philosophy. The mediated position arrived at sees the central focus of business ethics in the intersection of micro-managerial concerns with macro-political ones provided by the task of determining morally optimum forms of business. Involvement with the macro rules out subordination to management while, conversely, involvement with the micro rules out subordination to political philosophy. Moreover, such is the (increasing) social importance of business, that business ethics can have at least co-equal explanatory status with political philosophy as a discipline.
Keywords academic discipline  business ethics  macro  management  managerial  meso  micro  political  political philosophy
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