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Modes of Managing Morality: A Descriptive Model of Strategies for Managing Ethics

Gedeon J. Rossouw and Leon J. van Vuuren
Journal of Business Ethics
Vol. 46, No. 4 (Sep., 2003), pp. 389-402
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25075115
Page Count: 14
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Modes of Managing Morality: A Descriptive Model of Strategies for Managing Ethics
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Abstract

As an alternative to attempts to impose models of personal moral development (e.g. Kohlberg) upon organisations we propose an evolutionary model of managing ethics in organisations. The Modes of Managing Morality Model that we suggest, is based on an analysis that explains why business organisations tend to move from less complex modes of managing ethics to more complex modes thereof. Furthermore, it also identifies the dominant ethics management strategies that characterise each of the stages. It is done in a way that avoids claiming that the more advanced modes of managing ethics necessarily represent moral development by business organisations. Instead of claiming the organisations develop morally, we claim that organisations move through an evolutionary process of improving their sophistication in managing ethical performance.

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