PHIL 164.001 – Morality and Business

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Instructor: Yoaav Isaacs. This course meets MW 2:30 – 3:45 p.m. in PH 381.

In this course we will address the central questions of business ethics. First, we will address broad issues related to the ethics of trade, property, and markets. What do markets do well? What do markets do poorly? How extensive should markets be? Are there things that should not be for sale?

We will then address issues in corporate ethics. What is the proper goal of a for-profit corporation? Whose interests should such a corporation serve? Are “sweatshops” morally permissible?

We will also cover issues relating to the regulation of businesses. What justifies intellectual property rights? What is “rent-seeking” and how should it be minimized?

While some of the course will be abstract, we will consider many real world cases in which such issues in business ethics arise.