The word ethics is derived from the Greek word ethos meaning “character”
Deals with what is good for the individual and for society and establishes the nature of obligations, or duties , that people owe themselves and one another.
Moral standards by which people judge behavior with respect to the rightness and wrongness of certain actions and to the goodness and badness of the motives and ends of such actions .
Ethics are often summed up in what is considered the “golden rule”— do unto others as you would have them do unto you .
Respect for others
Protection (of human subjects)
One of the earliest law codes developed, the Code of Hammurabi , made Bribery a crime in Babylon during the 18 th century B.C.
Although the law does influence the conduct of some professions, many ethical issues cannot be settled by the courts . The ethics of a particular act is many times determined independently of the legality of the conduct.
Ethics & Law
Ethical issues and existing laws may be at conflict at times.
Decisive answers cannot always be given for many ethical issues because there are no enforceable standards or reliable theories for resolving ethical conflicts such as creating a dam that will dislocate ethnic population .
Evolution Personal Value
Never take any action that is not honest, open and truthful and that you would not like to see reported in the media.
Evolution Religious Injunctions
Never take any action that is not kind , and that does not build a sense of community , a sense of all of us working together for a commonly good acceptable goal .
Evolution Utilitarian Benefits
Never take any action that does not result in greater good than harm for the society of which you are a part.
Evolution Universal Rules
Never take any action that you would not be willing to see others , faced with the same or closely similar situation, also be free and even encouraged to take .
Evolution Distributive Justice
Never take any action in which the least among us will be harmed in any way.
Evolution Contributive Liberty
Never take any action that will interfere with the rights of others for self-development and self-improvement.
Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate Governance .
Political contributions .
Misleading financial analysis.
Insider trading , securities fraud
Discrimination issues such as gender, race, religion, disabilities
Issues surrounding the democratization of the workplace: union
Issues affecting the privacy of the employee: workplace surveillance , drug testing
Issues affecting the privacy of the employer: whistle-blowing
Issues relating to the fairness of the employment contract and the balance of power between employer and employee: employment law .
Ethical relations between the company and the environment: pollution , environmental ethics
Ethical problems arising out of new technologies: genetically modified food
Product testing ethics: use of economically disadvantaged groups as test objects .
Patent infringement, copyright infringement ,.
Ethical issues arising out of international business transactions; e.g. bioprospecting and biopiracy in the pharmaceutical industry