Corporations are moral agents and have

Just because a corporation acts through human agents, does it make any sense to say that it is not a "morally responsible agent" when its contract breach costs taxpayers millions of dollars or its poorly designed automobile blows up on impact and kills innocent people?

It should have been built upon to create a stronger argument that legitimized corporations as moral decision-making agents on its own.

John Danley puts the issue a little more forcefully when he writes: However, it is at this point that Copp lets the crucial issue slip past him: Under Moore, as long as corporations can be self-sustaining, they are to offer the best product possible even though it does not directly maximize profits in the short-run at least.

The Corporation: A Moral Agent?

We would have good reasons to prefer spending time with morally perfect robots and corporations, I think — but these would still not be fellow moral agents.

When an individual commits a heinous crime, we want to know what was going on in their minds. What of punishment through the pocketbook, or extracting compensation for a corporate act? The third speaker of the proposition starts by delineating the difference between an agent and a moral agent.

To say that the only purpose for which companies are created is for profit is to say that entrepreneurs are passionless. Corporate governance ought to be determined through democratic process and political struggle, rather than through moral appeals to either business agents or lawmakers.

That is, corporate legal personhood means that we can place legal blame on corporations — so why should moral blame be thought of as some sort of supplementary substitute? She in fact argues that, even when we apply it only to bodily agents, the theory that persons are rational agents ends up being too narrow to properly define personhood ibid.: The other major strategy in CSR arguments, meanwhile, will be to claim that as a matter of fact the corporation carries with it some sort of social obligations, usually in the form of moral obligations.

The creation of business agency does bring with it certain obligations, but these obligations can only be tied to explicit contracts — this is why agency theory has focused almost exclusively on the relationship between agents and principals.

It makes no sense to have published goals and corporate values if one does not have the means to achieve them. The debate was composed of two teams, each of which had 4 members.

In other words, it is just those situations in which doing the right thing does not pay — or, worse, that doing the wrong thing is better for the business — that business ethics is most needed.

Would such an intervention really be effective, or would it damage the ability of corporations to succeed in the market? Or is it possible that the corporation — Volkswagen itself — bears some of the responsibility?

In other words, rather than attempting in vain to hold corporations morally responsible for their wrongdoings, we should instead refocus our efforts on broadening our ability to hold them legally responsible. In other words, the guiding principles of CSR are not conditions to be derived in advance from a theory of ethics, and then put into place through legal codification.

And second, Blair and Stout claim that management ought to operate for the benefit of the corporate entity itself, rather than for the benefit of shareholder wealth maximization, because it is in the financial long-term interests of the corporation.

One might still claim, however, that it is useful to treat corporations as if they were moral persons. And if so, can we conceive of a kind of punishment that effectively targets these features — can we conceive of a punishment that effectively rehabilitates Volkswagen, the recalcitrant group agent?

But this is not a satisfactory answer for two main reasons. The mistake, however, is in assuming that intentional systemhood is also a sufficient condition for moral personhood. It is not uncommon to see both strategies employed side by side. While the attempt to use agency theory as a way of normatively grounding business ethics is thus in error, this very failure provides us with an important insight.

If an organisation is not able or willing to make these changes, it should be possible to apply external pressure to it.Do corporations, like people, have moral responsibility?

What, to put it more broadly, is the moral status of a corporation?

Corporate social responsibility and the supposed moral agency of corporations

Proponents of this view take corporations to be full moral agents, with rights as well as moral responsibilities. The argument for this view is fairly straightforward. Philosopher Richard T.

De George offers a concise. Are Corporations Moral Agents? have even argued that corporations are full moral agents, capable of expressing emotions like guilt, and open to the same kinds of blaming and praising attitudes we typically direct at individuals.

Corporations as Moral Agents Essay

I’m not sure whether that is right. Corporations may be less like full moral agents, and more like extremely. Are corporations moral agents? Do they have moral responsibilities? What do you think companies should do to make themselves more moral organizations?

I would have to say that corporations can be viewed as moral agents%(28). The conference on The Moral Responsibility of Firms: For or Against?

Are Corporations Moral Agents?

was sponsored by the INSEAD-Wharton Alliance, the INSEAD Social Innovation Centre, Dreyfus Banquiers, The Wharton Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership, The Wharton Legal Studies and Business Ethics Department and the Carol and Lawrence Zicklin Centre for Business.

Corporations are moral agents I chose to evaluate the second debate because I thought it was the most significant to the purpose of the class: to analyze the moral responsibility of business.

The debaters were assigned to negate and affirm the following motion: Corporations are Moral Agents. Dec 22,  · Are Corporations Moral Agents? Published December 22, (Björnsson and Hess forthcoming) have even argued that corporations are full moral agents, capable of expressing emotions like guilt, and open to the same kinds of blaming .

Corporations are moral agents and have
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