Professional Ethics in Banking and the Logic of “Integrated Situations”: Aligning Responsibilities, Recognition, and Incentives
Journal of Business Ethics 156 (2):531-543 (2019)
AbstractThe paper develops a responsibility-based account of professional ethics in banking. From this perspective, bankers have duties not only toward clients—the traditional focus of professional ethics—but also regarding the prevention of systemic harms to whole societies. When trying to fulfill these duties, bankers have to meet three challenges: epistemic challenges, motivational challenges, and a coordination challenge. These challenges can best be met by a combination of regulation and ethics that aligns responsibilities, recognition, and incentives and creates what Parsons has called “integrated situations”. Professional associations play an important role for this purpose, especially as spaces in which peer recognition is earned. But financial incentives equally need to be brought in line, for example, through deferred bonuses or claw backs. Such measures can create a new culture of accountability in banking.
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Citations of this work
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