Business Ethics: A European Perspective

by Andrew Crane, Dirk Matten

Business Ethics is an exciting, new, student focused text which covers business ethics challenges and practices from an overall European perspective. It is the first business ethics textbook to feature a thorough assessment of the implications of three major challenges facing the corporation: corporate citizenship, globalization and sustainability.

The first part of the book covers the foundations of business ethics, including the nature of business ethics, the social role of the corporation, ethical theory, ethical decision making, and business ethics management. The second part applies these theories, concepts and tools to each of the corporation’s major stakeholders.

The book includes numerous cases, vignettes and examples that vividly bring to life the problems and practices of business ethics in Europe. It is written in a lively and accessible way, and the reader is provided with directed study questions, personal dilemmas and guidance for understanding and applying theory, making it an exciting and practical learning tool.

Readership: 2nd and 3rd year undergraduate Business students MA/MSC and MBA students.


* Introduction
* Part A: Understanding Business Ethics
* 1 Introducing Business Ethics
* What is business ethics?
* Why is business ethics important?
* Globalization: a new context for business ethics?
* Sustainability: a new goal for business ethics?
* Europe: a new perspective for business ethics?
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 1. McEurope: McDonalds faces ethical criticism in Europe
* 2 Framing Business Ethics: Corporate Responsibility, Stakeholders and Citizenship
* What is a corporation?
* Corporate social responsibility
* Stakeholder theory of the firm
* Corporate accountability: the firm as a ‘political’ actor
* Corporate citizenship
* Summary: study questions, research exercises
* Case 2. The ‘English Patient’: BMW withdraws from Rover Longbridge
* 3 Evaluating Business Ethics: Normative Ethical Theories
* Introduction
* The role of ethical theory
* Normative ethical theories: a European perspective
* Traditional ethical theories
* Contemporary ethical theories
* Summary: towards a pragmatic use of ethical theory
* Study questions, research exercise
* Case 3. A bitter pill: the pharmaceutical industry and affordable AIDS drugs for Southern Africa
* 4 Making Decisions in Business Ethics: Descriptive Ethical Theories
* Introduction
* Models of ethical decision-making
* Individual influences on ethical decision-making
* Situational influences on decision-making
* Summary: study questions, research exercises
* Case 4. Rogue traders: Scandals in the banking and finance industry
* 5 Managing Business Ethics: Tools and Techniques of Business Ethics Managment
* Introduction
* What is business ethics management?
* Setting standards of ethical behaviour: designing and implementing codes of ethics
* Managing stakeholder relations
* Assessing ethical performance
* Organizing for business ethics management
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 5. Shell shocked: has Shell moved towards a new way of managing business ethics?
* Part B: Contextualizing Business Ethics: The Corporate Citizen and its Stakeholders
* Introduction to Part B
* 6 Shareholders and Business Ethics
* Introduction: reassessing the importance of shareholders as stakeholders
* Shareholders as stakeholders: understanding corporate governance
* Ethical issues in corporate governance
* Shareholders and globalization
* Shareholders as citizens of the corporation
* Shareholding for sustainability
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 6. Derailing privatization: Railtrack, shareholders, and the ‘travelling public’
* 7 Employees and Business Ethics
* Introduction
* Employees as stakeholders
* Ethical issues in the firm-employee relation
* Employing people worldwide: the ethical challenge of globalization
* The corporate citizen and employee relations in a varied European context
* Towards sustainable employment
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 7. Unhealthy business: junior doctors and excessive working hours
* 8 Consumers and Business Ethics
* Introduction
* Consumers as stakeholders
* Ethical issues and the consumer
* Globalization and consumers: the ethical challenges of the global marketplace
* Consumers and corporate citizenship: consumer sovereignty and the politics of purchasing
* Sustainable consumption
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 8. Boycotting the ‘baby killers’? Nestle and the ongoing infant formula controversy
* 9 Suppliers,Competitors and Business Ethics
* Introduction
* Suppliers and competitors as stakeholders
* Ethical issues and suppliers
* Ethical issues and competitors
* Globalization, suppliers, and competitors: the ethical challenges of global business networks
* The corporate citizen in the business community: ethical sourcing and fair trade
* Sustainability and business relationships: towards industrial ecosystems
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 9. The spying game: allegations of industrial espionage at Unilever, Canal Plus, and Ericsson
* 10 Civil Society and Business Ethics
* Introduction: what is civil society?
* Civil society organizations as stakeholders
* Ethical issues and CSOs
* Globalization and civil society organizations
* Corporate citizenship and civil society: charity, collaboration, or regulation?
* Civil society, business and sustainability
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 10. From conflict to collaboration? Greenpeace’s Greenfreeze Campaign
* 11 Government, Regulation and Business Ethics
* Introduction
* Government as a stakeholder
* Ethical issues in the relation between business and government
* Globalization and business-government relations
* Corporate citizenship and regulation: business as key player in the regulatory game
* Governments, business, and sustainability
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 11. Mixing oil and Kohl: Elf, Leuna, and allegations of political corruption in France and Germany
* 12 Conclusions and Future Perspectives
* Introduction
* The nature and scope of business ethics
* Globalization as a new goal for business ethics
* Sustainablity as a new goal for business ethics
* Business ethics in a European context
* The role of different stakeholder constituencies in business ethics
* Corporate citizenship as a new concept in business ethics
* The contribution of normative ethical theories to business ethics
* Influences on ethical decision-making
* The role of management tools in business ethics
* Summary: study questions, research exercise
* Case 12. No laughing matter: the Ilisu dam project in Turkey


* ”For those who are confronted by ethical dilemmas, and interested in notions of “right and wrong”, this book is a great read.” -Professor Malcolm McIntosh, writer and teacher on corporate citizenship and sustainability, and Founding Editor of the Journal of Corporate Governance
* ”A really excellent book. This is an example of the “next generation” in business ethics texts that sets the standard for the years to come.” -Professor Ronald Jeurissen, Professor of Business Ethics, Nyenrode University, Netherlands
* ”This is the best book yet produced for anyone seeking to teach or understand business ethics from a European perspective…a superbly student and teacher-friendly book.” -Professor Ken Peattie, Director, ESRC Centre for Business Relationships, Accountability, Sustainability and Society (BRASS), Cardiff University


Andrew Crane, Business School, Nottingham University and Dirk Matten, Royal Holloway, University of London

Werden Sie Mitglied im UVG e.V. und gestalten Sie den Nachhaltigkeitsdialog mit. > Die Infos
DSGVO Cookie Consent mit Real Cookie Banner