Kantian Approach to Business Ethics
The Kantian theory is said to be the most remarkable of all deontological theories primarily in its premise that actions are not justified by their consequences (Prakashan 55). The argument that was raised by Kant was for an act to be considered morally acceptable it should be propelled by duty and not by motive. The Kantian Theory is strong on the duties that are considered categorical which when translated to the principle of ethics is referred to as categorical imperative. Norman Bowie expounded on this as follows:
The fundamental principle of ethics, the categorical imperative, is a requirement of reason and is binding on all rational beings. These are the essentials of Kant’s ethics. (4)
When applied to business, the categorical imperative theorized by Kant as: “Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that is should become a universal law”, poses concerns and contradictions. When put into the business perspective any action has a maxim which will then become a universal law. Since motives are not considered in telling whether such action is morally acceptable or not the application of the Kantian theory in business night later on results to problems.
An example of this is
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Prakashnan, Nirali. Business Ethics. Mumbai: Pragali Books Pvt., 2007.