The Impossibility of the Separation Thesis
Business Ethics Quarterly, Vol. 18, No. 4, pp. 541-548
13 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2008 Last revised: 28 Apr 2009
Date Written: July 21, 2008
Distinguishing "business" concerns from "ethical" values is not only an unfruitful and meaningless task, it is also an impossible endeavor. Nevertheless, fruitless attempts to separate facts from values produce detrimental second-order effects, both for theory and practice, and should therefore be abandoned. We highlight examples of exemplary research that integrate economic and moral considerations, and point the way to a business ethics discipline that breaks new ground by putting ideas and narratives about business together with ideas and narratives about ethics.
Keywords: Business, Ethics, Separation Thesis, Competing Values
JEL Classification: A13, H32, L21
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation