By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph
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Corporations. By: Ronald F. White, Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy College of Mount St. Joseph. Introduction. Two Issues What is a corporation and what does a manager do? Descriptive scientific theories What is a “Good” corporation and what does a “Good” manager do?

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By: Ronald F. White, Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy College of Mount St. Joseph

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By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Corporations

By: Ronald F. White, Ph.D.

Professor of Philosophy

College of Mount St. Joseph


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Introduction

  • Two Issues

    • What is a corporation and what does a manager do?

      • Descriptive scientific theories

    • What is a “Good” corporation and what does a “Good” manager do?

      • Prescriptive moral theories


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Introduction

  • Questions about Corporations

  • Descriptive Scientific Theories-

    • What is a Corporation?”

      • Social science

        • Psychology, Sociology, Political Science, Economics

      • Biology

        • Evolutionary biology

  • Prescriptive Moral Theories-

    • What is a “good corporation?”

      • Teleological: “good consequences”

      • Deontological: “rights-based”

      • Virtue-Based: “human excellence”


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

What is Business Ethics?

  • The Moral Landscape

    • Relationship between “Descriptive Facts” and “Prescriptive Values”

    • Moral Theory

      • Rights-Based (Enlightenment Deontology)

      • Consequentialism (Teleology: egoism, utilitarianism))

      • Virtue-Based (Aristotelian/Judeo-Christian)

  • The “Is-Ought Gap?”

    • Descriptive Egoism and/or Altruism

      • Is there a naturalistic foundation for altruistic cooperative human behavior or is it solely the product of social learning?

    • Prescriptive Egoism and/or Altruism

      • Is altruistic cooperative human behavior “Good” and if so, “ought it be preserved and or cultivated?

  • Legality v. Morality

    • Liberal (Kant: “good citizen” vs. “good person”)

    • Communitarian (good citizen=good person)

  • Theory of the Firm

    • Nexus-of-Contracts Theory

      • Stockholder theory (Locke)

      • Stakeholder theory (Kant)

    • Agency Theory


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Nexus-of-Contracts Theory

  • Orthodoxy is business management and business ethics is currently occupied by a deontological “Nexus-of-Contracts Theory,” whereby: “Each constituency or stakeholder group bargains with the firm over a set of rights that will protect the firm specific assets that it makes available for production.” (Boatright p. 1837)


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Stockholder Management Theory

  • Human Nature

    • Individuals, Rationality, Self Interest, Free Will

  • Classical Liberalism (Locke-Nozick)

    • Life, Liberty, and Property

    • Persons/Property

    • Invisible Hand

    • Role of Government in Human Affairs

    • Natural and Artificial Monopolies

  • Obligations to Stockholders

    • Corporations as “Money Machines”

  • Agency Theory


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Stakeholder Management Theory

  • Human Nature

    • Individuals, Rationality, Self Interest, Free Will

  • Welfare Liberalism (Kant-Rawls)

    • Life, Liberty, and Property

    • Persons/Property

    • Invisible Hand

    • Role of Government in Human Affairs

      • Natural Advantage and Rights

    • Corporations as Persons

    • Stakeholders

      • Stockholders

      • Employees

      • Consumers

      • Society

      • Government


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Agency Theory

  • Machiavellian Background

  • Jensen and Meckling: “Theory of the Firm” (1976)

    • Conflict of interest between contracting parties

      • (shareholders, corporate managers, debt managers etc.)

  • Conceptual Framework-

    • Contractual Obligations

    • Trust

    • Principals (owners)

    • Agents (managers)

    • Behavior of Principles and Agents

      • Delegation of Authority from Principle to Agent

        • Incentives and Monitoring-

      • Problem of Self-Interest-

      • Agency and Moral hazard: Who bears cost? Who enjoys Benefits?


By ronald f white ph d professor of philosophy college of mount st joseph

Issues

  • Moral Relationships Between:

    • Corporate Agents and Stockholders

    • Corporations and Employees

    • Corporations and Society

    • Corporations and other Corporations

    • Corporations and Government

      • Regulation of Corporations

        • Competition

        • Morality

          • Utility

          • Beneficence

          • Non-Maleficence

          • Justice


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