Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility

In the Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility (BE) stream, students take up three fundamental questions:

  • The first of these explores what types of BE program corporations have and why they have developed such programs (e.g., stakeholder pressure, niche markets, regulatory pressure, etc.). Students explore this question not only at at the level of individual firms, but also with regard to different economic sectors and national contexts.  A key part of this analysis entails the interplay between corporations and civil society movements (e.g., environmental NGOs, worker rights NGOs, fair trade movements, etc.) which seek to influence the behaviour of corporations with respect to environmental sustainability, labour and human rights, local development aspirations, etc. In this way students are able to investigate how the BE program functions in relationship to the larger national and global political economy.
  • The second question that students explore in this field relates to how we evaluate corporate behaviour in general and the BE program in particular. This involves the development of ethical standards (and democratic principles) for evaluating corporate behaviour and the application of such standards in complex circumstances.
  • The third question that students examine in this field is the actual impact of the BE program and, more specifically, what can be done to promote greater corporate responsibility.Again, such analysis occurs not only at the level of individual firms, but also examines sectoral, national and international initiatives. Such initiatives can be led by any of several different actors, including corporations themselves, NGOs, local communities and international organizations.
BA Requirements
  1. 6.0 credits chosen from:
  • AP/SOSC 2571 9.0 Intro to Social & Political Thought
    [6.0 credits towards the stream; 3.0 towards Electives]
  • AP/PHIL 2070 3.0 Intro to Ethics
  • AP/Phil 2060 3.0 Social & Political Philosophy
  • AP/Phil 2075 3.0 Intro to Applied Ethics
  • AP/Phil 3020 3.0 Ethics
  • AP/Phil 3110 3.0 Political Philosophy
  • AP/Phil 3510 3.0 Feminist Approaches to Ethics & Politics

2.   AP/SOSC 3040 6.0 Corporate Social Responsibility
[Pre-Req: Sosc 2340 (Sosc 2349)]

BA Honours Requirements

In addition to the BA requirements, students pursuing BA Hons. will also require:

  • AP/SOSC 4044 6.00 Ethics and Economics
    [Pre-Req: Sosc 2340 (Sosc 2340)]