The Ethics of Intracorporate Behavioral Ethics
18 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2017
Date Written: June 7, 2017
This Essay provides the first analysis of “behavioral ethics nudging,” the use of choice architecture by companies to influence the ethical decision making of their employees. This practice represents the cutting edge of corporate compliance because it seemingly offers an evidence-based, cost-effective way for companies to reduce the risk of respondeat superior liability. Yet the promise of behavioral ethics nudging masks a certain unease, because this type of behavioral compliance tool necessarily harnesses the dual thinking system of employees, often without their knowledge. Drawing on extensive behavioral science research, the Essay evaluates behavioral ethics nudging from an empirical and normative lens, calling both the efficacy and ethicality of the practice into question. The Essay concludes by providing a simple evaluative framework for companies intent on using behavioral ethics nudging as a compliance strategy.
Keywords: corporate compliance, behavioral ethics, nudge
JEL Classification: K2, K14, K42
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation