Intercultural Management between Universalism and Relativism: Fundamental Problems in International Business Ethics and the Contribution of Recent German Philosophical Approaches
EUROPE IN THE GLOBAL COMPETITION, S. Urban, ed., pp. 77-143, Wiebaden, Gabler, 1997
57 Pages Posted: 16 Feb 2010
Date Written: 1997
In this paper we discuss the ethical challenges of Multinational Corporations operating in various cultures with different social expectations and ethical values. We analyse the various responses of political institutions, religious organizations, and business practice to this challenge. Next we review the contribution of management literature to the resolution of this problem. In particular, we analyse the Integrative Social Contracts Theory of Donaldson and Dunfee. We discuss the philosophical problems of universalism and relativism of ethical standards and develop a culturalist perspective based on the constructivist approach of recent German philosophy. Finally, we outline the implications for management research and practice.
Keywords: intercultural management, business ethics, philosophy
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