Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (2):209-222 (2014)

Authors
Michael Skerker
United States Naval Academy
Abstract
Relatively few authors attempt to assess individuals’ moral responsibility for collective action within organizations. I draw on fairly technical recent work by Seamus Miller, Christopher Kutz, and Tracy Isaacs in the field of collective responsibility to see what normative lessons can be prepared for people considering entry into large hierarchical, compartmentalized organizations like businesses or the military. I will defend a view shared by Isaacs that group members’ responsibility for collective action depends on intentions to contribute to particular collective actions, against Miller and Kutz’s more inculpating standards. Miller and Kutz fail to achieve their goal of articulating a variable standard for measuring individual responsibility within organizations, for reasons suggesting we might not be able to do better with their theoretical commitments than a threshold warning for all potential entrants to be wary of the groups they enter. Isaacs sketches an approach that is more successful at creating a variable standard for assessing high echelon actors; I build on and refine her theory to argue that organization members can be held responsible for their unique interpretations of the organization mission and unique contributions to their role duties. High echelon actors may share personal responsibility for their subordinates’ behavior when they have created the conditions for those actions through their unique orders
Keywords Collective responsibility  Corporate responsibility  Responsibility  Corporate intentions  Business ethics  Just war theory
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1007/s10677-013-9430-7
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Social Action: A Teleological Account.Seumas Miller - 2001 - Cambridge University Press.
Complicity: Ethics and Law for a Collective Age.Larry May - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (3):483-486.
Collective Responsibility.Jan Narveson - 2002 - The Journal of Ethics 6 (2):179-198.

View all 8 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Collective Responsibility and the Narrative Self.Cassie Striblen - 2013 - Social Theory and Practice 39 (1):147-165.
Collective Responsibility.Marion Smiley - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Collective Responsibility and National Responsibility.Roland Pierik - 2008 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 11 (4):465-483.
Individual Scapetribing and Responsibility Ascriptions.Jeffrey J. Bailey - 1997 - Journal of Business Ethics 16 (1):47-53.
Collective Responsibility and Professional Roles.Paul B. Thompson - 1986 - Journal of Business Ethics 5 (2):151 - 154.
Corporate Moral Responsibility: When It Might Matter.Michael J. Phillips - 1995 - Business Ethics Quarterly 5 (3):555-576.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2013-05-28

Total views
143 ( #80,648 of 2,498,554 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
9 ( #80,494 of 2,498,554 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes