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MGG 495: Business Ethics Online Winter 2016 (Open Enrollment Course)

Posted by Tim on October 6, 2015 in Academics, Honors Experiences, New Programs, Online Courses

Winter Session 2016

Special Topics MGG 495 W1G Course # 10282 – Business Ethics – on-line course OPEN ENROLLMENT course!

Course Objective:

This seminar is intended to engage the students in developing a better understanding of the complex nature of economic-competitive markets.  In particular, we analyze the process by which individual ethical norms and strongly held moral beliefs guide the conduct of economically driven business organizations and reflect in their conduct as custodians of their owners, i.e., shareholders, other stakeholders and society-at-large.

Capitalism and competitive markets are considered as the most efficient system of simultaneously maximizing private wealth and public good.  The entire edifice, however, is based on the premise of truly competitive markets.  Unfortunately, in the real world, truly competitive markets do not exist, and most business activity takes place under conditions of imperfect competition, which creates negative second-order consequences and undermines the system’s claims of creating private profits while maximizing public good.

Imperfect markets have been made to work efficiently while protecting public good through a system of public intervention, i.e., laws and regulations, and voluntary self-restraint by business organizations in responding to societal expectations.  An added element to improve the acceptability of the imperfectly functioning markets is to be found in ethical values and beliefs, which guide individuals in their business decisions and respond to cultural norms and social expectations.

Some of the issues examined in this context include:  How do corporate culture and reward system influence the nature of ethical concerns in corporate actions?  How and why should companies voluntarily respond to societal pressures to protect individuals and groups who are adversely impacted by corporate actions, but are otherwise not protected by law or regulations?  What are some of the emerging trends in corporate social responsibility, corporate governance and social accountability, shareholder activism, and the rising influence of civil society organizations? How are these trends likely to change the core concepts of business operations, i.e., economic efficiency and profitability, and as they relate to various stakeholder groups and society-at-large.

This course is taught by Professor Tim Nguyen in the School of Management.