In his ground-breaking new textbook, Mick Fryer offers students of Business Ethics clear explanations of a range of theoretical perspectives, along with examples of how these perspectives might be used to illuminate the ethical challenges presented by business practice. The book includes:  • Realistic scenarios which gently introduce a theory and demonstrate how it can be applied to a real-life ethical dilemma that everyone can relate to, such as borrowing money from a friend  • Real organisational case studies in each chapter which illustrate how each theory can be applied to real business situations. Cases include Nike, Coca Cola, BMW, Shell, Starbucks and GSK  • ‘Pause for Reflection’ boxes and ‘Discussion Questions’ which encourage you to challenge the established notions of right and wrong, and empower you to develop your own moral code  • Video Activities in each chapter with accompanying QR codes which link to documentaries, films, debates and news items to get you thinking about real-life ethical dilemmas Visit the book’s companion website for self-test questions, additional web links and more at:

Utilitarianism: Maximizing the Good Consequences of Business

Utilitarianism: Maximizing the Good Consequences of Business

Utilitarianism: Maximizing the Good Consequences of Business

Chapter objectives

This chapter will:

  • introduce consequentialism as a way of evaluating ethics;
  • describe how utilitarians judge the ethicality of an action’s consequences in relation to how much good it causes;
  • explore some contrasting ideas about what is ‘good’ for people and how these might impact on utilitarian evaluation;
  • outline some difficulties with using utilitarianism in practice;
  • introduce rule utilitarianism as a response to these difficulties;
  • explain how the principle of corporate maximization offers a rule-utilitarian guide to management decision making;
  • outline some limitations of the principle of corporate maximization.


Most people would agree that telling a lie is an ethically questionable thing to do. However, there are times when it seems ethically acceptable to tell a lie. Consider the ...

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