Despite the general interest in corporate social responsibility and business ethics, the contemporary discussion rarely touches upon the normative core and philosophical foundations of business. Even though the actions and activities of business may be discussed from a moral perspective, not least in the media, the judgments and opinions relating to business and management often lack deeper moral reflection and consistency.

Partly for this reason, business ethicists are constantly challenged to provide such moral and philosophical foundations, and also to communicate them in an understandable manner. Such a challenge is also of scientific kind. Positions and opinions in the academic field need to be substantiated by thorough moral and theoretical reflection to underpin normative approaches. Far too often, business ethicists may agree on matters which they approach from different and sometimes irreconcilable philosophical standpoints, resulting in superficial agreement but deeper-lying disagreement. In other cases, it may be of high relevance to identify philosophical standpoints that may, despite conflicting fundamentals, arrive at conclusions acceptable to everyone.

The EBEN Research Conference 2015 will focus on the theoretical foundations of business ethics, and in particular on the philosophy of management. This implies identifying and discussing conflicts as well as agreement with regard to the philosophical and other foundations of business and management.      

A number of general questions relate to the theme of the conference, for example: What is the relation between business ethics and philosophy of management? What is the role of philosophy in management and leadership? And how does this relate to ethics and corporate social responsibility? Do cultural differences in approaches to business ethics and corporate social responsibility also involve philosophical disagreement? Moreover, what is the role of normativity in business ethics and how do we define normative approaches to business ethics? What does the last decade’s specialization in normative approaches to business ethics means for management and leadership strategies? Could well-founded disagreement be a way to cope with such a modern challenge or should modern discourses head for rational agreement along a route of procedure and rules? We invite papers that deal with issues of philosophy of management and business ethics from different perspectives.  We propose the following research themes and major research tracks at the conference:

- Philosophy of Management

- Leadership Philosophy

- Research Ethics and Business Ethics

- Theories of Business Ethics

- Normativity and Philosophy of CSR

- Business, Law and Human Rights

- Cultural Conditioning of Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility

Participants may of course also present their own topics for tracks. Track proposals will be evaluated by qualified peer-reviews and by the organizers.

We look forward to welcoming you in October 2015!



Extended deadline for paper submission: 1 August 2015


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