Faculty Publications

Title

Ethics and the Networked Business

Document Type

Article

Keywords

business ethics, management processes, network ethics, stakeholder theory, sustainability

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Business Ethics

Volume

90

Issue

SUPPL. 4

First Page

661

Last Page

681

Abstract

Pushing through a logical continuum of closed- to open-system views of organizations necessarily changes the conceptualization of a firm from a strongly bounded entity to a configuration of networks and sub-networks, which exists and operates in a larger systemic network configuration. We unfold a classification of management processes corresponding to views of the firm along the closed/open-systems continuum. We examine ethical issues that are likely to devolve from these classes of management processes, and we suggest typical means by which managers will attempt to control their firms' exposure to such issues. The final class of management processes examined focuses on the achievement of outcomes that are mutually satisfactory in the set of networks and sub-networks that constitute the focal firm, and that support the sustainability of the whole system. The article contributes to organizational theory, business ethics, and computer and information ethics by providing a comprehensive analysis of the impact of managerial views of the firm and of networks - virtual, social, informational - on managerial processes and on our understanding of how business ethics issues are linked to perceptions of what a firm is, does, and can do. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Original Publication Date

12-1-2009

DOI of published version

10.1007/s10551-010-0599-6

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