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Unit information: Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility in 2016/17

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Unit name Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility
Unit code MGRCM2014
Credit points 15
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Phillips
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

None

Co-requisites

None

School/department School of Management
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description

Recent controversy surrounding such issues as environmental damage, rewards to senior managers, the exploitation of workers in developing countries and corporate fraud have made business ethics front page news. Stakeholders such as customers, shareholders and pressure groups are increasingly demanding that firms behave as good corporate citizens and take responsibility for the wider social, economic and environmental impacts of their activities. At the same time, firms recognise that a reputation for sound ethics can be good for business.

Business ethics is therefore increasingly regarded as an integral part of Management education. This unit will explore and critically examine concepts such as globalisation, sustainability, stakeholder relations and corporate social responsibility. It is not the intention of the unit to show that business is either inherently ethical or unethical, but rather to show how ideas around ethics and corporate social responsibility can be used as a way of understanding organisations and their role in global society.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Identify and describe a range of issues relevant to business ethics and CSR
  • Explain and discuss theoretical approaches to business ethics and CSR
  • Analyze and appraise practice through the application of relevant theory
  • Critically evaluate the theory and practice of business ethics and CSR
  • Conduct independent research using a range of sources and gain awareness of the provenance and credibility of such sources.
  • Demonstrate developing essay writing skills.

Teaching details

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Teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Case-studies
  • Group work
  • Debate
  • Role-play

Assessment Details

Summative One 3000 word coursework assignment which will assess a student’s ability to:

  • Identify and describe a range of issues relevant to business ethics and CSR
  • Explain and discuss theoretical approaches to business ethics and CSR
  • Analyze and appraise practice through the application of relevant theory
  • Critically evaluate the theory and practice of business ethics and CSR
  • Conduct independent research using a range of sources and gain awareness of the provenance and credibility of such sources.
  • Demonstrate developing essay writing skills.

Reading and References

  • Beauchamp, T.L. & Bowie, N.E. (2004). Ethical Theory and Business, Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall.
  • Blowfield M & Murray A (2008) Corporate Responsibility: A Critical Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Crane, A. & Matten, D. (2010). Business Ethics: Managing Corporate Citizenship & Sustainability in the Age of Globalization, Oxford: Oxford University Press

Useful Journals:

  • Journal of Business Ethics
  • Business Ethics Quarterly
  • Organization
  • Organization Studies
  • Business & Society

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