Business Ethics and Society DSST Essay

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5 principles of business ethics
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1) Integrity 2) Objectivity 3) Professional competence and due care 4) Confidentiality 5) Professional behavior
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Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002
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legislation passed by the U.S. Congress to protect shareholders and the general public from accounting errors and fraudulent practices in the enterprise, as well as improve the accuracy of corporate disclosures.
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Major businesses associated with SOX 2002
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Enron, Tyco International, Adelphia, Peregrine Systems, and WorldCom.
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Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN)
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Requires 60-day advance notice to employees
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Kimberley Process Certification Scheme
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process established in 2003 to prevent “conflict diamonds” from entering the mainstream rough diamond market by United Nations
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Conflict Diamond
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a diamond mined in a war zone and sold to finance an insurgency, an invading army’s war efforts, or a warlord’s activity
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Kyoto Protocol
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An international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which commits its parties by setting internationally binding emission reduction targets
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Espionage
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involves a government, company/firm or individual obtaining information considered secret or confidential without the permission of the holder of the information.
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Old Social Contract
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Employer was expected to provide lifetime employment, steady promotions and loyalty. Drawback: created a sense of entitlement. Ended bc of: Global competition, Advances in technology, Deregulation, Beginning in 1970s too expensive to adhere to.
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New Social Contract
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places more responsibility on employees for their own prosperity and success – job security, advancement and continued employment are tied to what value employees add to the company. In exchange the company provides meaningful work, honest communication, and training opportunities
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Dukes vs Wal-Mart
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2011 case of Dukes filing against Wal-Mart for sex discrimination. Courts decided too many different circumstances for case to continue as class action lawsuit, women would have to to file by individual store.
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act utilitarianism
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a utilitarian theory of ethics which states that a person’s act is morally right if – and only if – it produces at least as much happiness as any other act that the person could perform at that time
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Rule Utilitarianism
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a form of utilitarianism that says an action is right as it conforms to a rule that leads to the greatest good
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Corporate Social Responsibility
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The idea that businesses should be held accountable for any of its actions that affect people, their communities, and their environment
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triple bottom line
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The measurement of an organization on the basis of its economic results, environmental impact, and contribution to social well-being.
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Environmental Justice
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the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies
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Issues affecting the privacy of the employee
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Protection/Prohibition/Privacy of: -Personnel Records -Social Security Numbers -Monitoring and Eavesdropping -Medical Records -Drug Testing Confidentiality -Background Screening
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In Kind Contributions
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Non-monetary donations, i.e. business particular products or services donated as part of philanthropy programs.
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non disclosure agreement (NDA)
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A legal contract between two or more parties that signifies a confidential relationship exists between the parties involved. The confidential relationship often will refer to information that is to be shared between the parties but should not be made available to the general public.
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Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
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responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person’s race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. Also illegal to discriminate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit.
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Quid Pro Quo
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A Latin phrase meaning “something for something”. This term is typically used in financial circles to describe a mutual agreement between two parties in which each party provides a good or service in return for a good or service.
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Karen Silkwood and Kerr-McGee
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Silkwood worked at the Kerr-McGee factory and died in the 1970s in a one car crash. Her estate sued after her death for inadequate health/safety at work resulting in high levels of plutonium (the study of those levels in her, her roomate, and boyfriend started before her death).
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Kohlberg’s Model of Cognitive Development
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Level 1: pre-conventional; motivated by avoidance of punishment and attainment of rewards. Level 2: conventional; motivated by how they believe their actions will be perceived and the benefit/ hurt to others, and by the demands of authority figures. Level 3: post-conventional; motivated by obligation to society and adherence to universal principles.
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Environmental Protection Act (1990)
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England, Wales, Scotland. Brings in a system of integrated pollution control for the disposal of wastes to land, water and air. Part I establishes integrated pollution control and gives local authorities new powers to control air pollution from a range of prescribed processes. Part II improves the rules on waste disposal. Part III covers statutory nuisances and clean air.
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OSHA
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Ensures that businesses employ proper safety methods and maintain safe working conditions. Protects agains workplace hazard.
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Surveillance of Employees
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Employers have the right to monitor your activities. Includes: -recording on CCTV cameras -opening mail or e-mail -use of automated software to check e-mail -checking phone logs or recording of phone calls -checking logs of websites visited -videoing outside the workplace -getting info from credit reference agencies -collecting information through ‘pos’ terminals, e.g. supermarket checkouts, to check the performance of individual operators.
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Outsourcing
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subcontracting work to outside companies, a common staffing strategy when lacking specialized resources internally. Can result in loss of control over the work and greater dependence on suppliers. Key advantages: the ability to find competitive and highly skilled specialists, cost benefits from external management and maintenance of info systems, flexibility when needs are variable. Organizations can pay for what they need rather than invest heavily in the necessary labor, hardware, and software.
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Labor laws for American multinational companies operating in other countries
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Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the ADEA, and the ADA prohibit 1) discrimination in compensation based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, and disability; 2) discrimination in all aspects of the employment relationship, including recruitment, hiring, assignment, transfer, firing, layoffs, etc.; 3) offensive conduct that creates a hostile work environment based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, and disability; and 4) retaliation from employers against employees bc they have opposed unlawful discrimination or participated in a discrimination related proceeding.
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Sexual Harassment
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any repeated unwanted behavior of a sexual nature, e.g. physical actions, words, images, and written material
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Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment
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when a person feels that their employment status is dependent on responding to unwelcome sexual advances
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Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
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outlines actions that are not allowed by management in an attempt to protect the rights of employees to form a union, and describes any practice that would interfere with a worker’s ability to create (or operate within) a union.
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Proprietary Information
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information which a company keeps confidential, believed to give company a competitive advantage, e.g. trade secrets, budgets, profit margins,secret formulas, recipes, etc.
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Legal Insider Trading
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occurs when a person legally trades stock within their company
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Illegal Insider Trading
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when an insider gains information about the company which is not available to the public and uses that information when buying stock
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Privacy Act of 1974
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-a person has the right to know and access any files that the federal government is keeping on them -prevents government agencies from sharing information that they have with other agencies -can only be shared with the individual whose information it is
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USA Patriot Act
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allows the FBI to search the email, phone records, and financial records of citizens, and even search homes and offices of citizens without their knowledge.
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International Monetary Fund
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has the responsibility of stabilizing international trade and preventing trade crises
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Grease Payment
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when a person pays a low-level official to make something happen faster than it normally would, process involves relatively small amounts of money
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NDA Time Period
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5 years is common in American nondisclosure agreements, although many companies insist on 2-3 years. In European NDAs, it is not unusual for the period to be as long as 10 years.
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Conflict of Interest
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when a person has multiple interests and they influence each other
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self-dealing conflict of interest
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when a person is a part of ( or benefits from) both ends of a deal
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outside employment conflict of interest
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when a person has multiple jobs and their interests conflict between them
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North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
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agreement between Canada, Mexico, and the US to lower trading barriers; deals with trade dispute between the countries
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World Bank
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an international organization that attempts to fight poverty by offering developmental assistance to middle and poor-income countries. By giving loans, and offering advice and training in both the private and public sectors, it aims to eliminate poverty by helping people help themselves.
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World Trade Organization
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-deals with/supervises trade on a global level -eliminates barriers to trade -helps developing countries in trade matters -settles trade disputes among member countries
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Child Labor Laws
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The FLSA regulates child labor by (a) setting minimum ages for jobs that have been determined to be particularly hazardous, (b) setting minimum ages for all other jobs, and (c) limiting the hours that children are permitted to work. The minimum age for particularly hazardous work in agriculture is age 16, whereas the particularly hazardous work in all other sectors of the economy is age 18.
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Deontological Ethics
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the normative ethical position that judges the morality of an action based on the action’s adherence to a rule or rules. It is sometimes described as “duty” or “obligation” or “rule”-based ethics, because rules “bind you to your duty.”
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Teleological Ethics
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a theory of ethics (similar to utilitarianism or ethical egoism) according to which the rightness of an act is determined by its end

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