A Note on Ethical Decision-Making

14 Pages Posted: 21 Oct 2008 Last revised: 4 May 2018

See all articles by Andrew Wicks

Andrew Wicks

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

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This technical note provides a framework for the discussion of ethical issues in business and defines some of the key vocabulary and theories used in defining ethical decisions and situations.



Rev. Apr. 27, 2018

A Note on Ethical Decision-Making


This note on ethics will build on and further develop the already familiar ways in which we think and talk about ethics. It provides background, language, and concepts to identify and analyze managerial problems from an ethics perspective. The focus of our use of these tools is to help managers understand the ethical dimensions of their decisions and to make defensible decisions. Use this handout as a reference guide and pay special attention to “Decision Rules” (part 3) and “Guides to Help Avoid Rationalizations” (part 4) because both will be used for the case analysis we will do in class. The remaining material (parts 5–8) provides additional background material that students may find useful.

Focus of business ethics

. . .

Keywords: business ethics, ethical issues, decision-making, morality

Suggested Citation

Wicks, Andrew, A Note on Ethical Decision-Making. Darden Case No. UVA-E-0242. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1278345

Andrew Wicks (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/wicks.htm

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