One of the most beneficial exercises in a course exploring ethics is to develop a paper that allows you the opportunity to create connections between your personal view of ethics and one of the theories under discussion. The nature of ethical decision making is recognition, analysis and resolution. We often don’t make a decision because it’s ethical, but rather, because it makes sense from our personal view of the situation. That is, ethical decisions happen “after the fact” as we begin to see the actual implications of the decision.
With this in mind, your paper should explore current ethical issues in the workplace that are relevant to your current career or the career that you are preparing to pursue. Your task is to begin to explore the possible issues within your workplace and choose one to focus on as you build your final paper. Please consider the following as possible approaches for this final paper:
- Construct a relevant ethical argument for addressing complex organizational issues using ethics theory as a foundation.
- Demonstrate the relevance of creating a culture founded in a theoretical framework for sound business ethics in today’s global marketplace.
- Create and systematically apply a defensible ethical moral framework to a contemporary ethics issue. To systematically apply the ethical moral framework, you must use the framework consistently as you describe the ethics issue. Explore the issue using the framework you create.
Use your full-sentence outline (ATTACHED) as a starting point for the development of your complete paper.
The topic of your project is a statement on the primary focus of your paper. This provides an overview of what you will explore. Your thesis, or topic sentence(s), tells the reader what your essay will discuss, explore, explain, argue, etc. This sentence(s) should provide a clear and concise statement about the point of your paper to help narrow the focus from the broader topic. The thesis should be a part of the first paragraph of this research paper.
Then, develop your case analysis using the five following sections:
- Section 1: Introduction and situational analysis: Describe the ethical dilemma, giving appropriate background information. The term “dilemma” implies that there are pros and cons to various options, even if some are clearly more socially acceptable than others. This is also where you do your situational analysis – identifying factors related to the individual(s) involved (consider the readings from this module), company and managerial practices and policies, external factors such as economic pressure, and any other aspects of the situation that you believe helped create the dilemma. Do not tell the story of the chosen case, instead spend time on pulling out the relevant points that form the main thrust of the ethical dilemma.
- Section 2: Stakeholder analysis: Identify the key stakeholders and how they are potentially impacted by the various options inherent in the dilemma. Note that stakeholder analysis is particularly pertinent to the consequentialist approach, and that one of the challenges is estimating positive and negative impacts on relevant stakeholders. Do the best you can, looking at both good and bad consequences for each stakeholder group. Make sure you summarize the overall situation and come to a conclusion about the greater good.
- Section 3: Analysis based on ethical theories: Analyze the ethical dilemma using a relevant theoretical perspective from this module’s material. This should be a substantial part of your paper.
- Section 4: Conclusion and recommendations: Up to now, you have been analyzing and comparing options. Here is where you pull together the different threads of your analysis and determine whether or not the company/individual did the right thing. Also, make recommendations about what should have done. Make sure your justifications clearly flow from your analysis. Make managerial and policy recommendations that would help avoid similar ethical dilemmas in the future and provide guidance to help those facing a similar dilemma.
- Section 5: References: List at least six to ten sources (other than the articles provided, your text, or the case article) where you located additional information about the company and the associated ethical dilemma(s).