“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.”
Albert Einstein“The Earth has enough for everyone’s need, but not enough for everyone’s greed”
The global economic catastrophe, which started in summer 2007, enmeshed with numerous corporate, governmental and international ethical and financial scandals and problems along with the previous numerous corporate, national and international ethical and financial scandals and crises, prompts discussion of it root causes, facets, and trajectory, and makes lively discussion on what constitutes responsible management education emphatic (Moon & Shen, 2010; Lane & Bogue, 2010; Miller, 2009; Christensen et al. 2007; Crane & Matten 2004; Matten & Moon 2004; Nicholson & DeMoss 2009; Swanson & Fisher 2008; Wankel & DeFillippi, 2006).
Today, it is hard to sidestep concerns of what might be factors facilitating unethical conduct in organizations of all sectors: business, government, even religion. Beyond consequent dire economic conditions, educating managers for a culture of greed, false values and moral blindness may be faulted (Neubaum, Pagell, Drexler, McKee-Ryan & Larson, 2009). Wall Street brokers, Lehman Brothers’ managers and other creative designers of financial services unfortunately are often products of business schools. They have used the know-how they gleaned to amorally take actions whose dénouement included the US real estate market bubble that burst in 2008. In Europe, currently several national economies are tittering on the verge of collapse also premised on a dearth of moral courage. What can we do as business educators to emerge from this epoch of catastrophes? The secret of success is no secret! We need to bolster the ethical acumen of managers through business education imperatives. It is incumbent upon business schools to not only imbue students with deep practical understanding of globalization, innovation and increase their ethical awareness in all functional areas of management and, further, develop their ability and inclination to think and act wisely and morally. Leading with integrity is what all organizational executives should aspire to. However, in the maelstrom of contemporary globalized business, rapidly involving technologies, and socio-political sea changes, many managers are ill-equipped to confidently act with integrity. Our hope and challenge is for management education to impart knowledge and skills not abstracted from but rather imbued with a moral compass supported by appropriate sensibilities and sophistication. Business culture is a keystone in the edifice of a virtuous society. Is this some Promethean undertaking? We think it is something the world of business education can move towards. This book is meant to be a pathway for those embarked on this journey to make progress through. This book suggests a rejiggering of the recipe for an excellent business education by adding ethical perspectives throughout. Based on our belief that integrity without knowledge is vitiated and knowledge without integrity can be dangerous, this book provides empirically grounded, theoretical insights for rethinking business curricula to meaningfully confront the salient challenges of the second decade of the twenty-first century.
This book is like a conclave of scholars from around the world, reflecting a diversity of backgrounds and perspectives, synergistically sharing knowledge, experience, aspirations and speculations on how morality should best be taught in a global economy.
This book responds to the following questions:
- How are teaching approaches adapted from the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences changing business ethics is taught?
- What kinds of pedagogic approaches and tools should be used for preparing future leaders to cope effectively with challenges of leading with integrity in a global world?
- How might integrity within academia be improved?
- How might business ethics teaching be integrated with human fulfillment and spirituality in helpful ways?
- How might improvements in the integrity of individuals translate into the integrity of organizations they work?
Though this book is not a panacea for business curricula, it provides useful perspectives on the rejuvenation of management education with new ways of improving the moral compass of students. References:
Christensen, L.J. et al. (2007) Ethics, CSR, and Sustainability in the Financial Times Top 50 Global Business Schools, Journal of Business Ethics
, 73: 347-368.
Crane, A., & Matten, D. (2004) Questioning the Domain of Business Ethics Education, Journal of Business Ethics
, 54: 357-369.
Lane, I.F., & Bogue, E.G. (2010) Faculty Perspectives Regarding the Importance and Place of Nontechnical Competencies in Veterinary Medical Education at Five North American Colleges of Veterinary Medicine, JAVMA-Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
, 237(1): 53-64.
Matten, D., & Moon, J. (2004) Corporate Social Responsibility Education in Europe, Journal of Business Ethics
, 54: 323-337.
Miller, R.A. (2009) The Ethics Narrative and the Role of the Business School in Moral Development, Journal of Business Ethics
, 90: 287-293.
Moon, J., & Shen, X. (2010) CSR in China Research: Salience, Focus and Nature, Journal of Business Ethics
, 94(4): 613-629.
Neubaum, D.O., Pagell, M., Drexler, J.A. Jr, McKee-Ryan, F.M. & Larson, E. (2009), Business education and its relationship to student personal moral philosophies and attitudes toward profits: an empirical response to critics, Academy of Management Learning and Education
, 8(1), 9-24.
Nicholson, C.Y., & DeMoss, M. (2009) Teaching Ethics and Social Responsibility: An Evaluation of Undergraduate Business Education at the Discipline Level, Journal of Education for Business
, 84(4): 213-218.
Swanson, D.L., & Fisher, D.G. (eds.) (2008) Advancing Business Ethics Education
, Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
Wankel, C., & DeFillippi, R. (Eds.) (2006). New Visions of Graduate Management Education
. Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.