Technology, Corporations, and Contemporary Globalization: An Ethical and Social Critique


I explore certain interconnections and commonalities among technology, corporations, and contemporary globalization in order to best understand the dangerous ethical and social consequences that accrue from them. I begin by discussing the notion of means becoming ends. Technology as means and corporate instrumental values tend to become endsin-themselves. I then suggest that technologist’s and corporate manager’s quantitative methods are ill-equipped to deal with questions of intrinsic value or ends, which are qualitative. Moreover, “development,” a key term in globalization discussions, is often defined quantitatively rather than qualitatively. I argue that this view is too narrow. Next, I discuss limiting autonomy as an important issue common to technology, corporations, and contemporary globalization. Material progress as a goal common to technology, corporations, and contemporary globalization is also considered. Technological mistakes and a neo-liberal, laissez-faire economy are said to be self-corrective, and this feature is used to support the notion of material progress. I argue that this has proved to be too optimistic. In the last section, I use certain contemporary leadership theorists to criticizeKenneth Galbraith’s and Peter Drucker’s views on corporate governance by technocratic specialists. I also discuss recent developments of the concept of technological assessment and related work by TU Delft researchers.

Download options


    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,694

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

34 (#339,543)

6 months
1 (#388,311)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Globalization, Technology, and Philosophy.David Tabachnick & Toivo Koivukoski (eds.) - 2004 - State University of New York Press.
The Amorality of Public Corporations.James Hazelton - 2005 - Essays in Philosophy 6 (2):6.
Lost in the World of Technology with and After Heidegger.Susanna Lindberg - 2015 - Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 20 (1):213-232.
Theorizing Globalization.Douglas Kellner - 2002 - Sociological Theory 20 (3):285-305.
Rethink Contemporary Anti-Globalization.Shifa Zhao - 2008 - Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 50:913-921.
The Balance of Sovereignty and Common Goods Under Economic Globalization.Eric Palmer - 2005 - Philosophy in the Contemporary World 12 (2):46-52.
The Globalization of Human Rights.Leslie Sklair - 2009 - Journal of Global Ethics 5 (2):81-96.
A New Generation of Corporate Codes of Ethics.Cynthia Stohl, Michael Stohl & Lucy Popova - 2009 - Journal of Business Ethics 90 (4):607-622.