Ethics Topics > Organizational Ethics

Overview

Ethics is key to successful organizations of all types, from community groups to non-profits to professional associations and corporations. All organizations face ethical challenges in their management structure, working environments, leadership style, and the objectives that they strive to achieve.

A significant goal for behavioral ethics research is to find ways to structure organizations in order to make it easier for people to do the right thing and harder for them to do the wrong thing.

These resources explore a variety of behavioral ethics concepts that, if known, can help to develop and sustain ethical organizational culture. Additionally, this section explores the skills necessary to be an ethical and effective team member.

Begin by watching the suggested videos for an introduction to the pressures people face in organizations, such as the tendency to be like those around them and the desire to please authority. To dig deeper, watch the additional videos for an overview of the psychological biases, such as framing and role morality, which can hamper ethical decision-making and action on an organizational and individual level. To prompt conversation, use the discussion questions which follow each video. Each video has teaching notes for details on the ethics concept, and (often) assignment suggestions.

The leadership videos offer best practices for creating ethical culture and explore the specific biases that leaders of organizations face. Watch the whole Giving Voice to Values Series for a detailed approach of how values-driven leadership supports ethical organizational culture.

Read the case studies to examine ethical challenges in a variety of organizations, including nonprofits, government, and the private sector. To dig deeper, answer the case study discussion questions and sketch the ethical decision-making process outlined in each case. The case studies can start your class discussion on ethics.

To explore further, watch “related” videos and read their corresponding case studies. Many of the ethics concepts covered by Ethics Unwrapped operate in tandem with each other, so the more you watch, the greater your understanding of ethical issues.

Additional Videos

Additional Case Studies

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