Dear Ethix – Issue 27

The Link between Technology and Ethics

I just finished reading the September/October 2002 issue of Ethix cover to cover. What a great issue! I especially enjoyed the review section as I hadn’t heard of any of those books yet! The conversation with Michael Federle was interesting — makes me want to spend more time reading Fortune.

Regarding the column on “Technology’s Impact on the Ethics Area” all I can say is this: Now I get it! I think you do a great job of outlining how technology and ethics are inseparable in the context of most modern discussions. The two themes are really interwoven throughout much of what we see in the news. Half way through your column I was just blown away that I hadn’t thought more about the relationship between the two. I’ve come to take technology for granted and have never really seen business function in its absence. For this reason, I had a hard time initially seeing the relationship. It’s clear to me now though, that even the overwhelming forces and trends such as globalization depend on technology.

It makes me even more interested in Ethix. I decided that I’m going to give a subscription to a friend for Christmas. I was excited by the “Business Ethics for Business Excellence” section of this issue as well because I think it’s a significant first step in telling the world what IBTE is all about — it’s first rate.
Kevin Osburn
Seattle, WA

Ethics Between Nations

Ethics plays an undoubtedly vital role in the integrity and unity of the nations of the world and its people. But why, day by day, is “the role of ethics” becoming inactive in southern and south-eastern Asia particularly? Is it due to the absence of ethical corporations and organizations? Can students play an “ethical role” regarding the matter? If so, how?
Nibedita Deb

Editor’s Note: Ethics — choosing to do the RIGHT thing — will always be a challenge in any society — in America as much as India or any other place. And the answer must be in terms of BOTH more ethical individuals (including students as well as business and government leaders) AND more ethical structures of government and business. It is not an “either/or” choice. Today’s students are tomorrow’s corporate and political leaders. Students can and should raise their voices today in favor of justice and ethics, but their greatest impact will come in the future when the character and wisdom they are now developing will find full expression in positions of responsibility.

References for Business Ethics

I am trying to make contacts and to create a library of possible materials on Business Ethics. If you could advise me a web site that would provide me with some materials regarding business ethics, code of conduct, transparency issues, that would be great. For the moment I am working on development of basic guidelines for code of conduct for Kazakhstan environment.
Zhan Utkelov, Good Governance Program Assistant
U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Embassy, Almaty, Kazakhstan

I retired from the University of Washington 2.5 yrs ago and am now assisting three non-profit, voluntary service organizations: the local county Red Cross, chairing the ethics committee for a large elder care facility, and setting up a program for homeless women and children. A friend and college professor of business administration referred me to your web site. I am glad to know that your organization exists. Can you refer me to relevant information on core values, mission statements, policies, and procedures?
LeAna Osterman
Lynden WA

Editor’s Note: In the review section for this issue we have reviewed three web-sites that should be useful.

Use of the Ten Principles

I would like to share the “Ten Principles of Highly Ethical Business Leaders” for internal company training and accountability. I noted that this information is reserved. How would I obtain permission to use this information?
Deanna Arnold
Bellevue, WA

Editor’s Note: IBTE/Ethix copyrighted material may be used provided (1) you have sought and received permission from the IBTE office for the particular purpose and audience you have in mind and (2) you clearly identify the IBTE/Ethix source and copyright on the material. Quality reprints of both the “Ten Principles” and the “Nine Reasons to Run A Company in An Ethical Manner” are also available for purchase for a small fee. Another possibility is to have one of the IBTE Co-directors (Gill or Erisman) come to your company to present the Principles with their fuller background and business application. Let us know what you decide.

Customer Privacy and Loyalty

I am subscriber to your excellent publication. I recently finished my doctorate in e-Commerce, and my dissertation is A Study of Loyalty and Privacy on the Web. The study concluded that customer privacy is a critical success factor in loyalty.
Dr. James P. Lawler, Assistant Professor of Information Systems
Pace University, New York NY