Strengthening Deliberation in Business: Learning From Aristotle’s Ethics of Deliberation
Forthcoming, Business & Society, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/00076503221113816
51 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2022 Last revised: 22 Jan 2023
Date Written: 2022
Deliberation has faced criticism with regard to its application to business, on the basis that it can be misused to disseminate an ideology, divert attention from genuine debates, or strengthen the power of certain people. We suggest that Aristotle’s notion of deliberation can mitigate these ethical risks and help companies strengthen their deliberative practices. A comprehensive perspective based on Aristotelian deliberation reveals the relevance of (a) individual and collective deliberation, promoting a virtuous and meaningful reflection, free from ideological conditioning; (b) deliberation on ends and means that facilitates a transcendental and rooted reflection, thereby avoiding artificial debates; and (c) deliberation that is decisive and cooperative and thus prevents instrumentalization of deliberation by the strongest. We contribute to the discussion of the relationship between business and society by identifying the different steps in the deliberative process and promoting a dynamic perspective on deliberation.
Keywords: Aristotle, Common Good, Corporate Social Responsibility, Deliberation, Neoliberalism
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