Search results

1 – 3 of 3
Click here to view access options
Article
Publication date: 1 May 2020

David Alastair Coldwell, Robert Venter and Emmanuel Nkomo

While the problem of unethical leadership is undoubtedly a global one, the urgency of generating ethical leadership to advance the development of Africa has never been…

Abstract

Purpose

While the problem of unethical leadership is undoubtedly a global one, the urgency of generating ethical leadership to advance the development of Africa has never been more evident than it is today. The challenge for higher education in developing ethical leaders is of core importance, as it is responsible for providing the main recruiting ground of business leaders. The current paper reports findings of a qualitative study of postgraduate students’ ethical development at the end of courses in business ethics aimed to enhance moral reasoning and ethical decision-making. The paper aims to ascertain whether stand-alone ethics courses are more effective than integrated ones in achieving academic ethical competency.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopts an idiographic approach which aims at eliciting individual student subjective perceptions of the effects of the direct and indirect courses of ethical instruction on their moral reasoning and ethical practice. The research design broadly follows Mill’s (2017) method of difference.

Findings

Findings indicate perceived differences in the relative effectiveness of stand-alone and embedded ethics courses among students but also show that most students hold positive overall evaluations of the effectiveness of the both types of ethics instruction.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations to the study include that it is cross-sectional, involves a small sample of postgraduate students and is restricted to two management courses at one institution of higher learning. Furthermore, while Mill (2017) provides a useful research design in this context, it is not able to indicate causality, as there are other possible unidentified “third variables” that may be the actual cause of student differences between embedded and stand-alone ethics courses. The study is not able to show the durability and transfer of ethical competencies into students’ later working lives.

Practical implications

The study provides a useful practical educational contribution to the extant knowledge in the field in that it suggests that ethical courses aimed at giving students a moral reasoning “toolkit” for ethical decision-making are more effective when delivered in the stand-alone format, whereas practical decision-making skills are best honed by embedded business ethics courses.

Social implications

The problem of corruption in business and politics in South Africa is widely documented and has been regarded as responsible for creating a serious developmental drag on the alleviation of poverty and quality of lives of the majority of people in the country. The moral/ethical competency and behavior of future business leaders is partly the responsibility of institutions of higher learning. The study aims to find the most effective means of imparting moral awareness in postgraduate students who are likely to take up business leadership positions in their future careers.

Originality/value

The study provides useful contribution to the extant knowledge in the field in the African context in that it suggests that ethical courses aimed at giving students a moral reasoning “toolkit” for ethical decision-making are more effective when delivered in the stand-alone format, whereas practical decision-making skills are best honed by embedded business ethics courses.

Details

Journal of International Education in Business, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-469X

Keywords

Click here to view access options
Article
Publication date: 7 December 2015

David Alastair Lindsay Coldwell and Tasneem Joosub

Strategies and policies aimed at alleviating poverty in Sub-Saharan African countries usually depend on capitalistically driven economic growth. However, the view that…

Abstract

Purpose

Strategies and policies aimed at alleviating poverty in Sub-Saharan African countries usually depend on capitalistically driven economic growth. However, the view that capitalism needs to reinvent itself to survive the crisis of confidence brought about by the recent global financial collapse depends on the extent to which such a shared value oriented, sustainable capitalist reinvention is embraced by emergent business leaders. A sustainable system of capitalism driven by business and community shared value can only take root if the hearts and minds of future business leaders are convinced of their cogency and appropriateness. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reports the findings of an empirical study utilizing a Likert-type scale designed to measure corporate shared value (CSV) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) among a sample of fourth year accountancy students at a leading South African university.

Findings

Preliminary findings suggest that perceptions of this group of emergent leaders generally regard CSR rather than CSV as the “correct” business model for companies to follow. Although the sample is limited to one South African university and is relatively small, it contributes to the literature by offering insight into emergent business leaders’ perceptions and their view of the direction of CSR in South Africa should take.

Research limitations/implications

Implications of the paper are that by offering insight into emergent business leaders’ perceptions of South African society and specifically their view of the direction South African CSR should take, the paper suggests prescriptive remedial steps in policy that educational and other learning institutions could take to engender appropriate social values in learners.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the literature by offering devised and tested measuring instruments for CSR and CSV in the South African context and gives insight into emergent business leaders’ perceptions and their view of the direction of CSR in South Africa should take.

Details

African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, vol. 6 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-0705

Keywords

Click here to view access options
Article
Publication date: 15 August 2016

Alistair Mutch

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which Scottish pre-eminence in accounting texts in the eighteenth century was influenced by religion. By so doing, to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which Scottish pre-eminence in accounting texts in the eighteenth century was influenced by religion. By so doing, to add to the literature on the relationship between religion and accountability.

Design/methodology/approach

An examination of religion as social practice is conducted by examining the relationship between formal, printed, sources and the extensive archives of the Church of Scotland. A sample of five administrative units of the church is used to explore local practice in detail.

Findings

Accountability was at the heart of the theology of the Church of Scotland. It shaped local practices of accountability to give what is termed “systemic accountability”, which featured the detailed specification of roles and the recording of transactions. Lay involvement in this system was extensive amongst the “middling sort”. This system formed the backdrop to the Scottish pre-eminence in accounting texts, facilitated by widespread literacy and a propensity to publish, both in turn shaped by the broader religious context.

Research limitations/implications

The research is confined to Scotland and does not consider the wider impact on areas such as British North America. The value of examining religion as a relationship between belief and social practice could be extended to other belief systems, as the paper only considers the Reformed Protestant tradition of Christianity.

Originality/value

The value is in a detailed investigation of religion as a social practice, which has not been presented before in the context of accountability. It presents a new perspective on Scottish accomplishments in the field of accounting, accomplishments which have been of significance for the broader profession.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 29 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

1 – 3 of 3