This kind of assertion, backed by force, is the basis of much authority and it leads to violence very often. So much so that it turns out not to be the simplest way to live among humans in the long run, even if it is accepted by small groups say a whole family in the short run.
Ethics should concern all levels of life: This document is designed as an introduction to making ethical decisions.
It first provides a summary of the major sources for ethical thinking, and then presents a framework for decision-making. Ethics provides a set of standards for behavior that helps us decide how we ought to act in a range of situations.
In a sense, we can say that ethics is all about making choices, and about providing reasons why we should make these choices. Ethics is sometimes conflated or confused with other ways of making choices, including religion, law or morality.
Many religions promote ethical decision-making but do not always address the full range of ethical choices that we face. Religions may also advocate or prohibit certain behaviors which may not be considered the proper domain of ethics, such as dietary restrictions or sexual behaviors.
A good system of law should be ethical, but the law establishes precedent in trying to dictate universal guidelines, and is thus not able to respond to individual contexts.
Law may have a difficult time designing or enforcing standards in some important areas, and may be slow to address new problems. Both law and ethics deal with questions of how we should live together with others, but ethics is sometimes also thought to apply to how individuals act even when others are not involved.
Finally, many people Ethical decision making report the terms morality and ethics interchangeably. Others reserve morality for the state of virtue while seeing ethics as a code that enables morality. Another way to think about the relationship between ethics and morality is to see ethics as providing a rational basis for morality, that is, ethics provides good reasons for why something is moral.
There are many systems of ethics, and numerous ways to think about right and wrong actions or good and bad character. The field of ethics is traditionally divided into three areas: Our experience with applying particular ethical standards or principles can inform our understanding of how good these standard or principles are.
Three Broad Types of Ethical Theory: Ethical theories are often broadly divided into three types: Each of these three broad categories contains varieties of approaches to ethics, some of which share characteristics across the categories.
Below is a sample of some of the most important and useful of these ethical approaches. The Utilitarian Approach Utilitarianism can be traced back to the school of the Ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus of Samos BCEwho argued that the best life is one that produces the least pain and distress.
This conforms to our feeling that some good and some bad will necessarily be the result of our action and that the best action will be that which provides the most good or does the least harm, or, to put it another way, produces the greatest balance of good over harm.
Ethical environmental action, then, is the one that produces the greatest good and does the least harm for all who are affected—government, corporations, the community, and the environment.
The Egoistic Approach One variation of the utilitarian approach is known as ethical egoism, or the ethics of self- interest. In this approach, an individual often uses utilitarian calculation to produce the greatest amount of good for him or herself.
Ancient Greek Sophists like Thrasymacus c. One of the most influential recent proponents of ethical egoism was the Russian-American philosopher Ayn Randwho, in the book The Virtue of Selfishnessargues that self-interest is a prerequisite to self-respect and to respect for others. There are numerous parallels between ethical egoism and laissez-faire economic theories, in which the pursuit of self-interest is seen as leading to the benefit of society, although the benefit of society is seen only as the fortunate byproduct of following individual self-interest, not its goal.
This approach to ethics underscores the networked aspects of society and emphasizes respect and compassion for others, especially those who are more vulnerable.
The Duty-Based Approach The duty-based approach, sometimes called deontological ethics, is most commonly associated with the philosopher Immanuel Kantalthough it had important precursors in earlier non-consquentialist, often explicitly religious, thinking of people like Saint Augustine of Hippowho emphasized the importance of the personal will and intention and of the omnipotent God who sees this interior mental state to ethical decision making.
Kant argued that doing what is right is not about the consequences of our actions something over which we ultimately have no control but about having the proper intention in performing the action. The ethical action is one taken from duty, that is, it is done precisely because it is our obligation to perform the action.
Ethical obligations are the same for all rational creatures they are universaland knowledge of what these obligations entail is arrived at by discovering rules of behavior that are not contradicted by reason. The most basic form of the imperative is: Notice the duty-based approach says nothing about how easy or difficult it would be to carry out these maxims, only that it is our duty as rational creatures to do so.
In acting according to a law that we have discovered to be rational according to our own universal reason, we are acting autonomously in a self-regulating fashionand thus are bound by duty, a duty we have given ourselves as rational creatures. We thus freely choose we will to bind ourselves to the moral law.
For Kant, choosing to obey the universal moral law is the very nature of acting ethically.Ethical Decision-Making for Investment Professionals This self-paced, minute online course presents the ethical decision-making framework and uses multi-media case studies to show you how to apply the framework in the real world.
STEPS OF THE ETHICAL DECISION DECISION--MAKING PROCESSMAKING PROCESS EESE Faculty Development Workshop. Douglas R. May, Professor and Co-Director. International Center for Ethics in Business.
SUMMARY OF THE STEPS OF THE ETHICAL DECISION MAKING PROCESS 1. 2. Gather the facts 3. Define the ethical issues 4. Identify the affected parties. A Framework for Making Ethical Decisions; Here our method for ethical decision making should enable us to recognize these new and Distance Education Report.
One approach to ethical decision making is to consider the effect of your decision on yourself as the decision maker, anyone else potentially involved, and the bigger picture – the impact of your actions on your institution, your profession, and the world.
Ethical Decision Making Essay. Evaluation of Ethical Decision-Making Models In today’s time, it is wise to have ethical principles in the counseling fields due to working with people who ethics .
CFA Institute’s Ethical Decision-Making Framework helps investment professionals analyze and evaluate ethical scenarios where there is not a clear “right” and “wrong” path.