A Kantian approach to codes of ethics

Journal of Business Ethics 11 (10):737 - 744 (1992)
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The paper discusses whether codes of ethics are Kantian notions through an analysis of their intention and structure. The article also discusses some of the ideas put forward by William Starr in his article, Codes of Ethics — Towards a Rule-Utilitarian Justification,Journal of Business Ethics 2(2) (May 1983).The paper refers to recent definitions of codes of ethics and considers reasons for the proliferation of such codes. It examines the moral justification for these codes and analyses the underlying ethical theory particularly in relation to Kantian ethics. There is an account of how Kant''s views of the source of morality and moral obligation, the structure and nature of Kantian moral law and the role of the individual and his/her relationship with others, which is relevant to the development of a theoretical base for codes of ethics. There is some discussion of potential problems in the practical application of Kantian ethics to a specific code.



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