Essay: Are corporations moral agents?
After reviewing several papers related to the social responsibilities of corporations, I acquired a better understanding related to the ethical standpoint of the corporation. Although, in America, corporations are their entity that is separated from the people who possess it. However, a corporation is considered a legal entity, and it is hard to consider the organization as the moral agent with no consideration of people who are cooperation in charge. According to Peter French, the hierarchy of corporation is based on its rule and decision making which determine whether the decision is in the corporate interests which makes the corporation a moral agent. In my perspective, the morality of the corporation is solely the reflection of individual morality that is in charge of that cooperation. Another word, corporation is similarly morally responsible as its people are who govern it. Corporation is considered as the special type of organization however, they are not person. Considering the corporation as a separate entity it consists of a separation degree as well CITATION man12 \l 1033 (manderson).
To begin with, the concept that organizations are morally responsible agents or not. The corporation is the legal contract that referred to as legal persons. The fundamental reason for corporate existence is based on the two factors. First, which allows its people to pool the assets and resources together and also engage in the economic activities on the scale which they cannot achieve individually. Secondly, limit these individuals' liability which operation must be bankrupt. The cooperation could act by their ‘agents’ that is through their board of directors, employers, and officers.They act on behalf of the corporation principles. They have the fiduciary duty that put corporation interests ahead on their own. In the result of cooperation collective nature, the organizations are mostly economic system powerful actors. As they do huge amounts of good which add trillions in the GDP of every year. For instance, the corporation performs construct huge buildings, do research on medical, do transportation through the automobile, air as well as supply unstoppable environment means. Although corporations do some of the activities that are not good ethically. For instance, they occasionally breach the contracts and they are involved in the tortuous activity. As the corporation acts through human agents which does not makes sense that the organizations are not morally responsible when they don’t follow the rules and breach the contracts such as million dollars taxpayers or they poorly design the automobiles which impact and even kill the innocents. Through this one can say that the organization is not morally responsible although there are some responsible people still in the corporation. Although this answer is not satisfactory due to two major reasons. First, the harm does not usually affect the enterprise's collective nature itself. For example, if one person does not build and design as well as do the automobile mass-market which is quite literally the collective entity is on the wrong roots and the person and organization should take the responsibility themselves. Also, in case we only make the corporation responsible for the harmful activities the results won't work. No person in the organization possesses the insurance or money which compensates for the breach of contract and also victim the tort entirely. So, the corporation is both legally and morally responsible in the tortuous behavior and contract breach CITATION Man09 \l 1033 (Mangual).
Business is termed as a productive organization and the purpose of the organization is developing sale services and goods which usually profit us. Business is considered as the activity one person does business with the other person in the exchange of valuable goods and services. The ethics of business must be understood as the ethical dimension study for both the commercial activities as well as the productive organization. It consists of ethical analyses of distribution, marketing sale, production as well as consumption of both goods and services. In this regard, Business ethics are extremely significant and relevant to every person. Also, we usually spend huge portion of our lives in conducting various activities, employees do productive activities as part of the productive organization. Business ethics is considered a huge field, several people used to engage in business activity which is consists of lawyers, professionals, and accountants. They are also bound through promulgated codes through a professional society CITATION Mor16 \l 1033 (Moriarty). The business ethics must be understood as the study of the professional practice which includes the content study, management, development as well as code of conduct effectiveness which is designed for guiding the people's actions as well as engaged in the business tasks. Such entry would not be considered as theform of business ethics. Despite, it is considered as an academic discipline for business ethics. Business ethics is the academic discipline which is populated through normative theorists and social scientist as well as the articles types which are published in the journals of business ethics. Business ethics can be taken as a term of the agent of moral obligation who is engaged in the activities of the business. Such questions are not described typically as the agency of moral corporate and the moral corporate responsibility. The corporate is not referred to as the legal entity rather than the collective individuals' group. If we go precisely the firm & agent is a morally responsible.
In the literature of business ethics, French influential thinkers argued that the firm is morally responsible in what they are doing as well as can be seen as the moral person ‘full-fledged’. According to this, he claims that the firm has the structure of decision-making internally by which it causes the events to occur as well as act intentionally. Though few of the responses for the early work of the French accepted this claim that the corporations are the moral agents but it also denied that a corporation is a moral person CITATION Geo10 \l 1033 (George). It is also claimed by Donaldson, that the firm could not behave as a person due to the lack of significant capacities of human which include an ability to pursue happiness. Another response denied the fact that the corporations are moral agents it is argued in 1983 by Velasquez that the firms lack the agency necessary conditions which are the ability to perform actions. Latterly, in 1995 French recanted their claim that the firms are the responsible persons but not the claim that the corporations are moral agents. Then the discussion related to the corporate moral responsibility and corporate moral agency mostly faded through the literature of business ethics. Rather it continued to receive mainstream attention for philosophical literature where it can be treated in the sophistication higher degree. It is also believed by various writers that the firm is the moral agent. It is also claimed that the agency needs intentions and the firm is not of this kind which has intensions. It is commonly said about the firms' responsibility and agency might be metaphorical or the shortest way in referring to the agency as well as individuals' responsibility within the corporation. The corporate reputation could be an important liability or asset it provides for firms' incentives to perform activities because of care to be operational. Something which firms might wish for selling is due to its people want to buy it can produce significant harm to users. It is required that the state must identify businesses individually with the least standards that could be adopted for long term benefits.
It is concluded that the morality of a corporation is the individual morality reflection who is in charge of it. Every decision is made with some interests of its people. It also includes the decision which is better for the company and the company to thrive to benefit its workers. Several decisions are developed each day under the corporation not only through the people who are responsible for it but also from the employees in the down hierarchy. The ideal condition is the one in which everyone is responsible and accountable for their activities.
BIBLIOGRAPHY George, Richard T. De. "corporations-moral-status-of." October 3,2010.
manderson. business government & society iii. review. New York: wordpress.com, 04/02/2012.
Mangual, Rafael. "Are Corporations "Morally Responsible Agents" ?" archieve. 27/07/2009.
Moriarty, Jeffrey. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Case study. Stanford University: The Metaphysics Research Lab, Center for the Study of Language and Information (CSLI), Stanford University, Nov 17, 2016.
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