Defining a post-conventional corporate moral responsibility

Journal of Business Ethics 39 (1-2):101 - 108 (2002)
The stakeholder approach offers the opportunity to consider corporate responsibility in a wider sense than that afforded by the stockholder or shareholder approaches. Having said that, this article aims to show that this theory does not offer a normative corporate responsibility concept that can be our response to two basic questions. On the one hand, for what is the company morally responsible and, on the other hand, why is the corporation morally responsible in terms of conventional and post-conventional perspectives? The reason why the stakeholder approach does not offer such a definition, as we shall see, is because the normative stakeholder approaches tend to confuse the social validity with the moral validity or legitimacy. It leads us to a conventional definition of corporate moral responsibility (CMR) that is not relevant to the pluralistic and global framework of our societies and economies. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate this intuition.
Keywords business ethics  discourse ethics  moral responsibility  normative approach  post-conventional perspective  responsibility  stakeholder theory
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