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Introduction to Business Ethics & Sustainability - MAN00021C

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  • Department: The York Management School
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Laura Mitchell
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: C
  • Academic year of delivery: 2023-24

Module summary

To introduce students to the theories and practices of business ethics and social responsibility in national and global contexts and the personal, ethical dilemmas, which people in organisations can face within such contexts.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2023-24

Module aims

This module aims to introduce students to the theories and practices of business ethics, environmental and social responsibility in national and global contexts and the personal, ethical dilemmas, which people in organisations can face within such contexts. The module also aims to develop students academic and communication skills to support their professional development.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module students should be able to:

  1. Identify the central claims, arguments, problems and solutions to be found in contemporary ethical business discussions

  2. Identify and reflect on personal ethics, as a student and future professional

  3. Develop abilities to interpret, synthesise and criticise ethical positions and debates from literature

  4. Present and assess arguments in a clear and rigorous way including identifying and using appropriate resources and referencing formats

Module content

Indicative topics

  • What is ethics?

  • Non-consequentialist Ethical Theories

  • Ethics in Practice*

  • Consequentialist Ethical Theories

  • Managing Stakeholders*

  • Environmental Sustainability & Business Ethics*

  • Consumers & Business Ethics

  • Employees & Business Ethics

  • Regulation & Business Ethics*

  • Civil Society & Business Ethics

* topics with an asterix are linked to accreditation requirements

Employability and Transferability Outcomes

By the end of this module students should have achieved:

  • Knowledge and understanding in the:

  • Challenges and opportunities arising from the activities of people and organisations

  • Economic, social and environmental conditions which influence future business decisions

  • Development of appropriate and ethical business policies and strategies to meet stakeholder needs within a changing environment

  • Role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) policies and business ethics in the modern corporation

  • Process of academic referencing

Intellectual skills including:

  • Cognitive skills of critical thinking, analysis and synthesis

  • The ability to identify assumptions, evaluate statements in terms of evidence

  • Detection of false logic or reasoning

  • To create, evaluate and access a range of ethical options within a given context

  • Application of ideas and knowledge to a range of business and other situations

Professional practical skills including:

  • The application of business models to business problems and phenomena

  • Self-awareness, openness and sensitivity to diversity in terms of people, cultures, business and management issues

Transferable (key) skills including:

  • Communication skills (oral and written) in a range of electronic and business media

  • Reflective, adaptive and collaborative learning

  • The interpersonal skills for effective listening, negotiating, persuasion and presentation

Assessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
Essay: Case Study Critique
N/A 80
Essay/coursework
Essay: Personal ethics statement
N/A 20

Special assessment rules

None

Reassessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
Essay: Case Study Critique
N/A 80
Essay/coursework
Essay: Personal ethics statement
N/A 20

Module feedback

Feedback will be written:

Annotation of the submitted student work

Structured feedback sheet – aligned with marking criteria

Verbal feedback on formative work will be given in feed-forward sessions

Indicative reading

Crane, A. and Matten, D. (2016). Business Ethics: Managing Corporate Citizenship and Sustainability in the Age of Globalization. Oxford.



The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.