Business Ethics

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Business ethics (also corporate ethics) is a form of  applied ethics  ethics or  professional  professional ethics  ethics that examines ethical principles and moral or ethical problems that arise in a business environment. It applies to all aspects of business conduct and is relevant to the conduct of in individuals dividuals and entire organizations.

Business ethics has both  both normative normative  and descriptive dimensions. As a corporate practice and a career specialization, the field is primarily normative. Academics attempting to understand  business behavior employ descriptive methods. The range and quantity of business ethical issues reflects the interaction of profit-maximizing behavior with non-economic concerns. Interest in  business ethics accelerated dramatically during the 1980s and 1990s, both within major  corporations and within academia. For example, today most major corporations promote their  commitment to non-economic values under headings such as ethics codes and social responsibility charters. Adam Smith said, "People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices." prices. "[1] Governments use laws and regulations to point business  behavior in what they perceive to be beneficial directions. Ethics implicitly regulates areas areas and [2] details of behavior that lie beyond governmental control. control.  The emergence of large corporations with limited relationships and sensitivity to the communities in which they operate accelerated acc elerated [3] the development of formal ethics regimes. regimes.  

Contents History Business ethical norms reflect the norms of each historical period. As time passes p asses norms evolve, causing accepted behaviors to become objectionable. Business ethics and the resulting behavior  [4][5][6] evolved as well. Business was involved in  in  slavery, slavery,[4][5][6]  colonialism colonialism,,[7][8]  and the  the cold war .[9][10]  The term 'business ethics' came into common use in the United States in the early 1970s. By the mid-1980s at least 500 courses in business ethics reached 40,000 students, using some twenty textbooks and at least ten casebooks along supported by professional societies, centers and  journals of business ethics. The Society for Business Ethics was started in 1980. European  business schools adopted business ethics after 1987 commencing with the European Business [11][12][13][14] Ethics Network (EBEN). (EBEN).[11][12][13][14]  In 1982 the first single-authored books in the field [15][16]   appeared.. appeared Firms started highlighting their ethical stature in the late 1980s and early e arly 1990s, possibly trying to distance themselves from the business scandals of the day, such as the  the  savings and loan crisis crisis.. 


The idea of business ethics caught the attention of academics, media and b business usiness firms by the [12][17][18] ][18] [12][17  However, legitimate criticism of business practices was attacked end of the  the Cold War . for infringing the "freedom" of  entrepreneurs  entrepreneurs and critics were accused of supporting [19][20] communists.  This scuttled the discourse of business ethics both in media and ac academia ademia..[21]  communists.

Overview Business ethics reflects the  the  philosophy philosophy of business, business, one of whose aims is to determine the fundamental purposes of a company. compan y. If a company's purpose is to max maximize imize shareholder returns, then sacrificing profits to other concerns is a violation of its  its fiduciary responsibility responsibility.. Corporate entities are legally considered as persons in USA and in most nations. The 'corporate persons' are legally entitled to the rights and liabilities due to citizens as persons. Economist Milton Friedman writes that corporate executives' "responsibility... generally will be to make as much money mone y as possible while conforming to their basic rules of the society, both those embodied in law and those embodied in ethical custom". custom".[22] Friedman also said, "the only entities who can have responsibilities are individuals ... A business cannot have responsibilities. So the question is, do corporate executives, provided they stay within the law, have responsibilities in their business activities other than to make as much money mon ey for their  [22][23 [22][23][24] ][24]

 A multi-country stockholders as possible? And my answer to that is, no, they do not." not. " 2011 survey found support for this view among the "informed public" ranging from 30 to as consequentialist  consequentialist rather than  than pragmatic,  pragmatic, implying 80%..[25] Duska views Friedman's argument as  80% [26][27]  Similarly author  that unrestrained corporate freedom would benefit the most in long term. term.  business consultant  consultant Peter Drucker  observed, "There is neither a separate ethics of business nor is one needed", implying that standards of personal ethics cover all business situations. situations .[28]  However, Peter Drucker in another instance observed ob served that the ultimate responsibility of company [29] directors is not to harm —   primum non nocere.  Another view of business is that it must exhibit corporate social responsibility  e thical business must responsibility (CSR): an umbrella term indicating that an ethical act as a responsible citizen of the communities commun ities in which it operates even at the cost of profits or  [30][31][32][33][34] [30][31][32][33 ][34] other goals. goals.  In the US and most other nations corporate entities are legally treated as persons in some respects. For example, they can hold title to property, sue and be sued and are subject to taxation, although their  free speech  speech rights are limited. This can be interpreted to impl imply y that they have independent ethical responsibilities. [citation needed ] Duska argues that stakeholders have the right to expect a business to be ethical; if business has no ethical obligations, o bligations, other  institutions could make the same claim which would be counterproductive to the corporation co rporation..[26]  Ethical issues include the rights and duties between a company and its  employees, suppliers, customers and neighbors, neighbors, its  its fiduciary  fiduciary responsibility to its  its shareholders. shareholders. Issues concerning relations between different companies include  include hostile take-overs  take-overs and  and industrial espionage. espionage.  entrepreneurship;;  political political Related issues include  include corporate governance; governance;corporate social entrepreneurship contributions;; legal issues such as the ethical debate over contributions o ver introducing a crime of  corporate manslaughter ; and the marketing of corporations' ethics policies. [citation needed ] 

Functional business areas



Fundamentally, finance is a social science discipline. discipline.[35] The discipline borders  borders behavioral  behavioral [36] economics,, sociology, economics sociology,  economics, accounting and management. It concerns technical issues policy, the evaluation of alternative investment such as the mix of debt and  and equity, equity, dividend policy, options,, futures, futures, swaps, swaps, and other  derivatives, derivatives,  portfolio  portfolio diversification diversification  and many others.  projects,  options  projects, [who?] to be a discipline free from ethical burdens. burdens .[35] The  The 2008 financial crisis crisis   It is often mistaken caused critics to challenge the ethics of the executives in charge of U.S. and European financial institutions and financial regulatory bodies. bodies.[37] Finance ethics is overlooked for another reason —  issues in finance are often addressed as matters of law rather than ethics. ethics.[38]  Finance paradigm

Aristotle said, "the end and purpose Aristotle  p urpose of the polis is the good life" life"..[39] Adam Smith Smith  characterized the good life in terms of material goods and intellectual and moral excellences of character .[40]  Smith in his  his The Wealth of Nations commented, "All for ourselves, and nothing for other people, seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind."[41]  Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: to:    Adam Adam Sm Smith ith 

However, a section of economists influenced by the ideology of  neoliberalism, neoliberalism, interpreted the objective of economics to be maximization of  economic growth  growth through accelerated [42] consumption  and  production  production of  goods and services services..   Neoliberal Neoliberal ideology promoted finance consumption and  from its position as a component of economics to its core.[citation needed ] Proponents of the ideology hold that unrestricted financial flows, if redeemed from the shackles of o f "financial [citation needed ] [43]  best help impoverished nations to grow. repressions",,  best repressions" The theory holds that open financial systems accelerate economic growth by encouraging foreign capital inflows, thereby enabling higher levels of savings, investment, employment, productivity and an d [44][45][46][47] [48] [44][45][46][47]  along with containing corruption. corruption.   Neoliberals Neoliberals recommended that "welfare",, "welfare" governments open their financial systems to the global market with minimal regulation over  [49][50][51][52][53] ][53] The recommendations however, met with criticisms from various capital flows. flows.[49][50][51][52 ethicists,, found these claims to unfalsifiable and a schools of ethical philosophy. Some  Some   pragmatic pragmatic ethicists [54][55][56]    priori, although neither of these makes the recommendations false or unethical per se. se.[54][55][56] Raising economic growth to the highest value necessarily means that welfare is subordinate, although advocates dispute this saying that economic eco nomic growth provides more welfare than known [57] alternatives..  Since history shows that neither regulated nor unregulated firms always alternatives alwa ys behave [58][59][60] ][60] [58][59   ethically, neither regime offers an ethical  ethical  panacea. panacea.  Neoliberal recommendations to developing countries to unconditionally open up their economies [61][62][63][64 ][63][64][65] ][65]  The to transnational finance corporations was fiercely contested by some ethicists. ethicists .[61][62 claim that deregulation and the opening up of economies would reduce corruption was also [66][67][68] contested..[66][67][68] contested  


Dobson observes, "a rational agent is simply one who pursues personal material advantage ad infinitum. In essence, to be rational in finance is to be individualistic, materialistic, and competitive. Business is a game played by individuals, as with all games the object is to win, and winning is measured in terms solely of material wealth. Within the discipline this rationality concept is never questioned, and has indeed become the theory-of-the-firm's sine qua non". non".[69][70]  Financial ethics is in this view a mathematical function of shareholder wealth. Such simplifying assumptions were once necessary for the construction of mathematically robust robu st models. models.[71]  theory  and  and agency theory theory  extended the paradigm to greater realism. realism.[72]  However  signalling theory Other issues

Fairness in trading practices, trading conditions, financial contracting, sales practices, consultancy services, tax payments, internal audit, external ex ternal audit and  and executive compensation  compensation  [38][73]  Particular corporate ethical/legal also fall under the umbrella of finance and accounting. accounting. abuses include:  include: creative accounting, accounting, earnings management, management, misleading financial analysis  analysis insider  trading,, securities fraud, trading fraud,  bribery/ bribery/kickbacks and  and facilitation payments payments.. Outside of corporations,  bucket shops  and forex scams  scams are criminal manipulations of financial markets. Cases include shops and  accounting scandals, Enron, WorldCom WorldCom  and  and Satyam. Satyam.[citation needed ]  scandals, Enron, Human resource management 

Human resource management  management occupies the sphere of activity of  recruitment  recruitment selection, orientation,  performance orientation,  performance appraisal, appraisal, training and development, development, industrial relations  relations and  and health and [74] safety  issues. safety issues.  Business Ethicists differ in their orientation towards labour ethics. Some assess human resource policies according to whether they the y support an egalitarian workplace and the [75][76][77] [75][76][77]   dignity of labor . Issues including  including employment itself , privacy,  privacy, compensation in accord with  with comparable worth, worth,  [78][79] bargaining  (and/or its opposite) can be seen either as inalienable rights rights  or as collective bargaining [80][81][82][83 ][84] [80][81][82][83][84]  Discrimination  Discrimination by  by age (preferring the  the  young  young or the  the old) old), gender /sexual negotiable.. negotiable harassment,, race harassment race,, religion religion,, disability, disability, weight and attractiveness. A common approach to remedying discrimination is  is affirmative action. action.  Potential employees have ethical obligations to employers, involving intellectual property whistle-blowing..   protection and  and whistle-blowing Employers must consider  workplace safety, safety, which may involve modifying the workplace, or   providing appropriate training or hazard disclosure. policy,, globalization  globalization and  and trade unionism  unionism  Larger economic issues such as  as immigration, immigration, trade policy affect workplaces and have an ethical dimension, but are often beyond the purview of individual [78][85][86] ][86]   companies..[78][85 companies


Trade unions

Unions for example, may push employers emplo yers to establish  establish due process  process for workers, but may also cost [87][88][89][90 ][89][90][91][92 ][91][92][93][94 ][93][94][95][96] ][95][96]    jobs by demanding unsustainable compensation and work rules. rules.[87][88 Unionized workplaces may confront  confront union busting  busting and  and strike breaking  breaking and face the ethical implications of work rules that advantage some workers over ove r others.[citation needed ]  Management strategy 

Among the many people management strategies that companies employ are a "soft" approach that regards employees as a source of creative energy en ergy and participants in workplace decision and Theory Z Z  that emphasizes making, a "hard" version explicitly exp licitly focused on control control[97] and  [99] [98]  philosophy, culture and consensus. consensus.  None  None ensure ethical behavior .  Some studies claim that [100][101][102]   sustainable success requires a humanely treated and satisfied workforce. workforce.[100][101][102] Sales and marketing Main article:  article: Marketing ethics ethics   [103]

Marketing of age only as late as 1990s. 1990s.  Marketing ethics was approached from ethical  perspectives of virtue or  virtue ethics ethics,, deontology deontology,, consequentialism consequentialism,,  pragmatism  pragmatism and [104][105]   relativism.. relativism Ethics in marketing deals with the principles, values and/or ideals by which marketers (and marketing institutions) ought to act. act.[106] Marketing ethics is also contested terrain, beyond the  previously described issue of potential conflicts between profitability profitability and other concerns. Ethical [107][108][109] marketing issues include marketing redundant or dangerous dang erous products/services products/services[107][108][109]   transparency about environmental risks, transparency about  about   product product ingredients  ingredients such as [110][111][112 [110 ][111][112][113] ][113]  possible health risks, financial risks,  possible risks, security risks, genetically modified organisms [114] [115]  respect for consumer privacy and autonomy, autonomy,  advertising advertising  truthfulness and fairness in etc.,, etc. [116]  pricing & distribution.  pricing  distribution.   According to Borgerson, and Schroeder (2008), marketing can influence individuals' perceptions of and interactions with other people, implying an ethical responsibility to avoid distorting those  perceptions and interactions. interactions.[117]  Marketing ethics involves pricing practices, including illegal actions such as  as   price price fixing  fixing and legal actions including  including  price price discrimination  discrimination and  and  price price skimming skimming.. Certain promotional activities  bait and switch, switch, shilling shilling,, viral marketing marketing,, spam have drawn fire, including  including greenwashing, greenwashing, bait (electronic),,  pyramid (electronic) pyramid schemes schemes  and  and multi-level marketing marketing.. Advertising has raised objections about attack ads ads,, subliminal messages messages,, sex in advertising advertising  and  and marketing in schools. schools.  Production

This area of business ethics deals with the harm. du tiesSince duties of a company to and ensure that products pcan roducts and production processes dousually not needlessly cause few goods services be


 produced and consumed with zero risk, determining the ethical course can be problematic. In  products. Production some case consumers demand products that harm them, such as as  tobacco  tobacco products. may have environmental impacts, including  including  pollution, pollution, habitat destruction destruction  and  and urban sprawl. sprawl. The food and  and mobile phones  phones  downstream effects of technologies  technologies nuclear power , genetically modified food  principle  may prohibit introducing new may not be well understood. While the  the  precautionary precautionary principle technology whose consequences are not fully understood, that principle would have prohibited most new technology introduced since the  the  industrial revolution revolution.. Product testing protocols have  been attacked for violating the rights of both  both humans  humans and  and animals[citation needed ]  Property Main article:  article: Private property property,, and and  Property rights  rights 

The etymological root of property is the  the  Latin  Latin 'proprius' 'proprius'[118] which refers to 'nature', 'quality', 'one's own', 'special characteristic', 'proper', 'intrinsic', 'inherent', 'regular', 'normal', 'genuine', 'thorough, complete, perfect' etc. The word property is value loaded and associated with the  personal qualities of propriety and respectability, also implies questions questions relating to ownership. A 'proper' person owns and is true to herself h erself or himself, and is thus genuine, perfect and pure. pure .[119]  Modern history of property rights

Modern discourse on property emerged by b y the turn of 17th century within theological justified property  property rights  rights saying that God had discussions of that time. For instance,  instance, John Locke  Locke  justified  [120][121][122][123] [120][121][122][123]   made "the earth, and all inferior creatures, [in] common to all men". men". Utilitarian  Jeremy Bentham Bentham  stated, "property and law are born together to gether and die In 1802  1802 Utilitarian [124][125]   together".. together" One argument for property ownership is that it enhances individual liberty by extending the line of non-interference by the state or others around the person person..[126] Seen from this perspective,  property right is absolute and property has a special and distinctive character that precedes its legal protection. Blackstone conceptualized property as the "sole and despotic dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in total exclusion of the right of any other individual in the universe". universe".[127]  Slaves as property

During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, slavery spread to European colonies including America, where colonial legislatures defined the legal status of slaves as a form of property. property.[128]  During this time settlers began the centuries-long process of dispossessing the natives of  America of millions of acres of land. land.[129] Ironically, the natives lost about 200,000 square miles (520,000 km2) of land in the  the  Louisiana Territory  Territory under the leadership of  Thomas Jefferson, Jefferson, who [130][131][132] ][132] [130][131   championed property rights. rights. Combined with theological justification, property was taken to be essentially natural ordained by God..[133] Property, which later gained meaning as ownership and appeared natural to Locke, God Jefferson and to many of the 18th and 19th century intellectuals intellectuals[134] as land, labour or idea[135] 


and essentialized essentialized   and property right over slaves had the same  same theological  theological and  [136][137][138][139 ][140][141] [136][137][138][139][140][141]  It was even held that the property in slaves was a sacred  justification [142][143] right.. right  Wiecek noted, "slavery was more clearly and explicitly established under the Accordingly, US Supreme Court  Court Chief Justice Constitution as it had been under the Articles". Articles".[144] Accordingly,  Taney  in his 1857 judgment stated, "The right of property in a slave is distinctly and Roger B. Taney expressly affirmed in the Constitution". Natural right vs social construct 

 Neoliberals hold that private property rights are a non-negotiable natural right. right.[145][146] Davies counters with "property is no different from other legal categories in that it is simply a consequence of the significance attached by law to the relationships between legal  persons.""[147][148] Singer claims, "Property is a form of power, and th  persons. thee distribution of power is a [149][150]  Rose finds, "'Property' is only an effect, a  political problem of the highest order". order". construction, of relationships between people, meaning that its objective character is contestable. Persons and things, are 'constituted' or 'fabricated' by b y legal and other normative [151][152] techniques.".. techniques."  Singer observes, "A private property regime is not, after all, a Hobbesian Hobb esian state of nature; it requires a working legal system that can define, allocate, and enforce property propert y [153]  Davis claims that common law theory generally favors the view that "property is not rights."" rights. essentially 'right to a thing', rather a and sep arable separable bundle of rights subsisting which may avary according to but the context the object which is at stake". stake" .[147]  between persons In common parlance property rights involve a  bundle  'bundle of rights' rights'[154] including occupancy, use and [155][156][157][158] enjoyment, and the right to sell, devise, give, or lease all or part pa rt of these rights. rights.[155][156][157][158]   [159][160]  Michelman writes, "A property Custodians of property have obligations as well as rights. rights . regime thus depends on a great deal d eal of cooperation, trustworthiness, and self-restraint among the [161][162]    people who enjoy it." it." Menon claims that the autonomous individual, ind ividual, responsible for his/her own existence is a cultural construct moulded by  by Western culture  culture rather than the truth about the  the  human condition. condition.[163]  Penner views property as an "illusion" — a "normative phantasm" without substance. substance .[164][165]  In the neoliberal literature, property is part of the private side of a public/private dichotomy and acts a counterweight to state power. Davies counters that "any space may be subject to plural meanings or appropriations which do not necessarily come into conflict". conflict" .[166]  Private property has never been a universal doctrine, although since the end of the Cold War is it has become nearly so. Some societies, e.g., Native American bands, held land, if not all property, appropriated  the loser's in common. When groups came into conflict, the victor often  often appropriated [167][168]  property..  property  The rights paradigm tended to stabilize the distribution of property holdings on the presumption that title had been lawfully acquired. acquired .[169]  Property does not exist in isolation, and so property rights too too..[170] Bryan claimed that property rights describe relations among people and not just ju st relations between people and [171][172][173][174 ][173][174][175][176] ][175][176] [171][172  Singer holds that the idea that owners have no legal obligations to things others wrongly supposes that property rights hardly ever conflict with other legally protected


interests.[177] Singer continues implying that  interests. that legal realists  realists "did not take the character and structure of social relations as an important independent factor in choosing the rules that govern market life". Ethics of property rights begins with recognizing the vacuous v acuous nature of the notion [178]   of property. property. Intellectual property Main articles:  articles: Intellectual property  property and and  Intellectual property rights rights  

property  (IP) encompasses expressions of ideas, thoughts, codes and information. Intellectual property "Intellectual property rights rights"" (IPR) treat IP as a kind of  real property, property, subject to analogous  protections, rather than as a reproducible good or service. Boldrin and Levine argue that "government does not ordinarily enforce monopolies for producers produc ers of other goods. This is  because it is widely recognized that monopoly creates many social costs. Intellectual monopoly is no different in this respect. The question we address is whether it also creates social benefits commensurate with these social costs." costs."[179]  International standards relating to Intellectual Property Rights are enforced through  through  Agreement [180] on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights  Rights  (TRIPS). (TRIPS).  In the US, IP other than copyrights is regulated by the  copyrights  the United States Patent and Trademark Office Office..  The US Constitution  The  Constitution included the power to protect intellectual property, empowering empo wering the Federal government "to promote the progress of science and a nd useful arts, by securing for limited times to [181]   authors and inventors the exclusive right to their th eir respective writings and discoveries". Boldrin and Levine see no value in such state-enforced monopolies stating, "we ordinarily o rdinarily think  [182][183] of innovative monopoly as an  an oxymoron. oxymoron.  Further they comment, 'intellectual property' "is not like ordinary property at all, but constitutes co nstitutes a government grant of a costly and dan dangerous gerous  private monopoly over ideas. We show through theory and example that intellectual monopoly is not necessary for innovation and as a practical matter is damaging to growth, prosperity, and liberty" .[181] Steelman defends patent monopolies, writing, "Consider prescription drugs, for  instance. Such drugs have benefited ben efited millions of people, improving or extending their lives. Patent protection enables drug companies to recoup recou p their development costs because for a specific period of time they have the sole right to manufacture and distribute the products they against South Africa Africa''s 1997 have invented." invented."[184] The court cases by 39 pharmaceutical companies against  Medicines and Related Substances Control Amendment Act, which intended to provide [185][186][187]   affordable HIV medicines has been cited as a harmful effect of patents patents..[185][186][187] One attack on IPR is moral rather than utilitarian, claiming that inventions are mostly a collective, cumulative, path dependent, social creation and therefore, no one person or firm should be able to monopolize them even for a limited period .[188] The opposing argument is that the benefits of innovation arrive sooner when patents p atents encourage innovators and their investors to  philosopher, observes, "Ethically, increase their commitments. Roderick Long, a  a  libertarian  libertarian philosopher,  property rights of any kind have to be justified as extensions of the right of individuals to control control their own lives. Thus any alleged property rights that conflict with this moral basis — like like the "right" to own slaves — are are invalidated. In my judgment, intellectual property rights also fail to  pass this test. To enforce copyright laws and the like is to prevent people from making peaceful use of the information they possess. If you have acquired the information legitimately (say, by


 buying a book), then on what grounds can you be prevented from using it, reproducing it, trading it? Is this not a violation of the freedom of speech spe ech and press? It may be o objected bjected that the person who originated the information deserves ownership rights over it. But information is not a concrete thing an individual can control; it is a universal, existing in other people's minds and other people's property, and over these the originator has no legitimate sovereignty. You cannot own information without owning other people". people" .[189] Machlup concluded that patents do not have Self-declared  anarchist  anarchist Proudhon, Proudhon, in his 1847 the intended effect of enhancing innovation. innovation.[190] Self-declared seminal work noted, "Monopoly is the natural opposite of competition," and continued, "Competition is the vital force which animates the collective being: bein g: to destroy it, if such a [191][192] supposition were possible, would be to kill society"   abundanc e[193] because  because it Mindeli and Pipiya hold that the  the  knowledge economy  economy is an economy of abundance relies on the "infinite potential" of knowledge and ideas rather than on the limited resources of  natural resources, labor and capital. Allison envisioned an egalitarian distribution of  [195][196][197] ][197] knowledge..[194] Kinsella claims that IPR create artificial scarcity and reduce equality. knowledge equality.[195][196   Bouckaert wrote, "Natural scarcity is that which follows from the relationship between man and nature. Scarcity is natural when it is possible to conceive of it before any human, h uman, institutional, contractual arrangement. Artificial scarcity, on the other hand, is the outcome of such arrangements. Artificial scarcity can hardly serve as a justification for the legal framework that causes that scarcity. Such an argument would wou ld be completely circular. On the contrary, artificial [198][199]  Corporations fund much IP creation and can acquire scarcity itself needs a justification"  justification"   [200] IP they do not create, create,  to which Menon and others object object..[201][202] Andersen claims that IPR  has increasingly become an instrument in eroding public domain domain..[203]  Ethical and legal issues include:  include: Patent infringement, infringement, copyright infringement, infringement, trademark  infringement,,  patent  infringement patent and  and copyright misuse, misuse, submarine patents, patents, [[biological patent]s,  patent]s, patent,  patent,  copyright copyright  and  and trademark trolling, trolling, Employee raiding  raiding and monopolizing talent,  talent, Bioprospecting Bioprospecting,,   biopiracy  and industrial espionage espionage,, digital rights management management..   biopiracy and   Notable IP copyright cases include  include Napster   Napster , Eldred v. Ashcroft  Ashcroft and  and Air Pirates. Pirates. 

International issues While business ethics emerged as a field in the 1970s, 1 970s, international business ethics did not emerge until the late 1990s, looking back on the international developments of that decade. decade.[204]  Many new practical issues arose out of the international internationa l context of business. Theoretical issues such as cultural relativity of ethical values receive more emphasis in this field. Other, older  issues can be grouped here as well. Issues and subfields include:    


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The search for universal values as a basis for international commercial behaviour. behaviour. Comparison of business ethical traditions in different countries. Also on the basis of their respective GDP and [Corruption rankings]. Comparison of business ethical traditions from various religious perspectives. perspectives. Ethical issues arising out of international business transactions; e.g.,  e.g., bioprospecting  bioprospecting and biopiracy biopiracy  in the pharmaceutical industry; the  the fair trade trade  movement;  movement; transfer pricing. pricing.  globalization  and and  cultural imperialism. imperialism.  Issues such as  as globalization



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labor..  Varying global standards—e.g., the use of  child labor The way in which multinationals take advantage of international differences, differences, such as outsourcing production (e.g. clothes) and services (e.g. call centres) to low-wage countries. The permissibility of international commerce with pariah states.

The success of any business depends on o n its financial performance. Financial accounting helps the management to report and also control the business performance. The information regarding the financial performance of the company plays an important role in enabling people to take right decision about the company. Therefore, it becomes necessary to understand how to record based on accounting conventions and concepts ensure unambling and accurate records. Foreign countries often use dumping as a competitive threat, selling products at prices lower than their normal value. This can lead to problems in domestic markets. It becomes difficult for these markets to compete with the pricing set by b y foreign markets. In 2009, the International Trade Commission has been researching anti-dumping laws. Dumping is often seen see n as an ethical issue, as larger companies are taking advantage of other less economically advanced companies.

Economic systems Political economy economy  and  and political  political philosophy  philosophy have ethical implications, particularly regarding the Rawls  and and  Robert Nozick  are both notable distribution of economic benefits. benefits.[205] John Rawls contributors. For example, Rawls has been interpreted as  as  offering a critique of offshore outsourcing  on social contract grounds, whereas Nozick's libertarian philosophy rejects the outsourcing notion of any positive corporate social obligation.

Law and regulation Very often it is held that business is not bound by any ethics other than abiding by the law. Milton Friedman is the pioneer of the view. He H e held that corporations have the obligation to [206]

 Friedman made it make a profit within the framework of the legal system, s ystem, nothing more more.. explicit that the duty of the business leaders is, "to make as much money as a s possible while conforming to the basic rules of the society, both those embodied in the law and those embodied in ethical custom". custom".[207] Ethics for Friedman is nothing more than abiding by 'customs' and 'laws'. The reduction of ethics to abidance to laws and customs however have drawn serious criticisms. Counter to Friedman's logic it is observed [by whom?] that legal procedures are technocratic,  bureaucratic, rigid and obligatory where as ethical act is conscientious, voluntary choice beyond normativity..[208] Law is retroactive. Crime precedes law. Law against a ccrime, normativity rime, to be passed, the [209]  Further, as per law, crime must have happened. Laws are blind to the crimes undefined in it. it. "conduct is not criminal unless forbidden by law which gives advance warning that such conduct [210] is criminal.   Also, Also, law presumes the accused is innocent until proven guilty and that the state must establish the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. As per liberal laws followed in most of the democracies, until the government prosecutor p rosecutor proves the firm guilty with the limited 


resources available to her, the accused is considered to be innocent. Though the liberal premises of law is necessary to protect individuals from being persecuted by Government, it is not a [211][212 ][213][214]  sufficient mechanism to make firms morally accountable. accountable.  

Implementation Corporate policies This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help  help improve this article article  by sources. Unsourced material may be  adding citations to reliable sources. be challenged challenged  and  and removed removed..  (March 2011) 

As part of more comprehensive  comprehensive compliance and ethics programs, programs, many companies have formulated internal policies pertaining to the ethical conduct of employees. These policies can be simple exhortations in broad, highly generalized language langu age (typically called a corporate ethics statement), or they can be more detailed policies, containing specific behavioural requirements (typically called corporate ethics codes). They are generally gen erally meant to identify the company's expectations of workers and to offer guidance on o n handling some of the more common ethical  problems that might arise in the course of doing business. It It is hoped that having such a policy will lead to greater ethical awareness, consistency in application, and the avoidance of o f ethical disasters. An increasing number of companies also require employees e mployees to attend seminars regarding  business conduct, which often include discussion of the company's policies, specific case studies, and legal requirements. Some companies even require their employees to sign agreements stating that they will abide by the company's rules of conduct. Many companies are assessing the environmental factors that can lead employees to engage in unethical conduct. A competitive business environment may call for unethical behaviour. Lying has become expected in fields such as trading. An example of this are the issues surrounding the unethical actions of the Saloman Brothers.  Not everyone supports corporate policies that govern ethical conduct. Some claim that ethical  problems are better dealt with by depending upon employees to use their own judgment. Others believe that corporate ethics policies are primarily rooted in utilitarian concerns, and that they are mainly to limit the company's compan y's legal liability, or to curry public favour by giving the appearance of being a good corporate citizen. Ideally, the company will avoid a lawsuit because its employees will follow the rules. Should a lawsuit occur, the company can claim that the  problem would not have arisen if the employee had only followed the code properly. Sometimes there is disconnection between the company's code of ethics and the company's actual practices. Thus, whether or not such conduct is explicitly sanctioned by mana management, gement, at worst, this makes the policy duplicitous, and, at best, b est, it is merely a marketing tool.


Jones and Parker write, "Most of what we read under the name business ethics is either  sentimental common sense, or a set of excuses ex cuses for being unpleasant. unpleasant.""[215] Many manuals are  procedural form filling exercises unconcerned about the real ethical dilemmas. For instance, US Department of Commerce ethics program treats business ethics as a set of instructions and  procedures to be followed by 'ethics officers'., officers'.,[31] some others claim being ethical is just for the sake of being ethical. ethical.[216] Business ethicists may trivialize the subject, offering standard answers that do not reflect the situation's complexity. complexity .[208]  Ethics officers This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help  help improve this article article  by adding citations to reliable sources. be challenged challenged  and  and removed removed..  sources. Unsourced material may be  (March 2011) 

Ethics officers (sometimes called "compliance" or "business conduct officers") have been appointed formally by organizations since the mid-1980s. mid -1980s. One of the catalysts for the creation of  this new role was a series of fraud, corruption, and abuse scandals that afflicted the U.S. defense industry at that time. This led to the creation of the Defense Industry Initiative (DII), a panindustry initiative to promote and ensure ethical business practices. The DII set an early  benchmark for ethics management in corporations. In 1991, the  the Ethics & Compliance Officer  Association  (ECOA) —  Association  — originally originally the Ethics Officer Association (EOA) — was was founded at the Center for Business Ethics  Ethics (at Bentley College, Waltham, MA) as a professional association for  those responsible for managing organizations' efforts to achieve ethical best be st practices. The membership grew rapidly (the ECOA now has over ov er 1,200 members) and was soon established as an independent organization. Another critical factor in the decisions of companies to appoint a ppoint ethics/compliance officers was the passing of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines for Organizations in 1991, which set standards that organizations (large or small, commercial and non-commercial) had to follow to obtain a reduction in sentence if they should be b e convicted of a federal offense. Although intended to assist  judges with sentencing, the influence in helping to establish best practices has been far-reaching. In the wake of numerous corporate scandals between 2001 and 2004 (affecting large WorldCom  and  and Tyco) Tyco), even small and medium-sized companies have corporations like  like Enron, Enron, WorldCom  begun to appoint ethics officers. They often report to the Chief Executive Officer and are responsible for assessing the ethical implications of the company's activities, making recommendations regarding the company's ethical policies, polic ies, and disseminating information to employees. They are particularly interested in uncovering or o r preventing unethical and illegal actions. This trend is partly due to the  the  Sarbanes – Oxley Oxley Act  Act in the United States, which was enacted in reaction to the above scandals. A related trend is the introduction of risk assessment officers that monitor how shareholders' investments might be affected by the company's compan y's decisions. The effectiveness of ethics officers is not clear. If the appointment is made primarily as a reaction to legislative requirements, one might expect little impact, at least over the short term. In  part, this is because ethical business practices result from a corporate corporate culture that consistently


 places value on ethical behaviour, a culture and climate that usually emanates from the top of the organization. The mere establishment of a position po sition to oversee ethics will most likely be insufficient to inculcate ethical behaviour: a more systemic programme with consistent support from general management will be necessary. The foundation for ethical behaviour goes well beyond corporate culture and the policies of any given company, for it also depends greatly upon an individual's early moral training, the other  institutions that affect an individual, the competitive business environment the company compan y is in and, indeed, society as a whole.

Academic discipline As an academic discipline, business ethics emerged in the 1970s. Since no academic business ethics journals or conferences existed, researchers published in general management man agement journals, and attended general conferences. Over time, specialized peer-reviewed journals appeared, and more researchers entered the field. Corporate scandals in the earlier 2000s increased the field's  popularity. As of 2009, sixteen academic journals devoted to various business ethics issues Ethics  and  and Business Ethics Quarterly Quarterly  considered the existed, with  with Journal of Business Ethics [217] leaders.. leaders   The International Business Development Institute[218] is a global non-profit organization that represents 217 nations and all 50 United States. It offers a Charter in Business Development (CBD) that focuses on ethical business practices and standards. The Charter Ch arter is directed by Harvard, MIT Harvard, MIT,, and  and Fulbright  Fulbright Scholars, and it includes graduate-level coursework in economics,  politics, marketing, management, technology, and legal aspects of business development as it  pertains to business ethics. IBDI also oversees the International Business Development Institute of Asia Asia[219] which provides individuals living in 20 Asian nations the opportunity to earn the Charter.

Religious views  law, followed by many  many Muslims, Muslims, banking   banking specifically prohibits charging interest on In  In Sharia  Sharia citation needed  ] Traditional  Confucian  Traditional Confucian thought discourages profit-seeking. profit-seeking.[220] Christianity  Christianity  loans.[ Rule  command, "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do offers the  the Golden Rule to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law aand nd the prophets." prophets."[221] according to the article "Theory of the real economy", econom y", there is a more narrow point of view from the Christianity faith towards the relationship between ethics and religious traditions. This article stresses about how capable is Christianity of establishing reliable boundaries for financial institutions. one criticism comes from Pope Benedict by describing the "damaging effects of the real economy of badly managed and largely speculative financial dealing." de aling." It is mentioned that Christianity has the  potential to transform the nature of finance and investment but only if theologians and ethicist  provide more evidence of what is real in the economic life. life.[222] 

Related disciplines


Business Business  ethics is part of the  the  philosophy philosophy of business, business, the branch of  philosophy   philosophy that deals with the  philosophical, political, and  and ethical  ethical underpinnings of business and  and economics. economics.[223] Business ethics operates on the premise, for example, that the ethical operation of a private business is socialists,, (who contend that  possible — those those who dispute that premise, such as  as  libertarian socialists "business ethics" is an  an oxymoron) oxymoron) do so by definition outside of the domain of business ethics [citation needed ]  proper.   The philosophy of business also deals with questions such as what, if any, are the  the  social responsibilities  of a business;  responsibilities business;  business business management  management theory theory;; theories of  individualism  individualism vs. collectivism;; free will  will among participants in the  the marketplace marketplace;; the role of  self interest; interest; invisible collectivism hand  theories; the requirements of  social justice; hand justice; and  and natural rights, rights, especially  especially  property property rights, rights, in [citation needed ] relation to the business enterprise.   is economic analysis Business ethics is also related to  to political economy, analysis  from political economy, which is   perspectives. Political economy deals with the distributive consequences of  and  historical  and historical perspectives. economic actions. It asks who gains and who loses from  from economic activity, activity, and is the resultant distribution fair or just, which are central ethical issues distribution 

64 Tennyson St Elwood VIC 3184 T: +613 9531 4099 F: +613 9531 4799 E: [email protected] W:  – 0 – 

Publication date? September 2006 Can you be ethical and successful? Definitely “yes”, and just  look for proof at Infosys, descri described bed in “Beyond Branding”   by the Medinge Group as “one of the top „brands with a   conscience‟ in the world”.  My exposure to India‟s Infosys began in 2005 when the   Chairman and Chief Mentor, Mr N. R. Narayana Murthy, visited  Australia and when speaking about corporate governance and morality in business he told the audience “We follow one  principle – the softest pillow is a clear conscience”. Later,   he was quoted on this many times by senior government ministers and business leaders - such was the impact of his communication of ethics and leadership. I cannot recall if at the same time he quoted Mahatma Gandhi who urged us to “be the change you want in the world” which is  one of the great ethical exhortations of the modern era. Yet for Infosys to have a reputation almost equally strong for  its success as it is for its ethics, is quite an achievement in a short time. It was only a little over 25 years ago that Murthy and his co-founders sat around the kitchen table and set out their  business dream. Infosys is a relative newcomer to the world of corporate success, starting in 1981 but experiencing its strongest growth in recent years. For example, revenue in 1994 was US$9.5million but by 2004 had grown to US$1billion which became US$2billion the year after, a tribute to the 50,000 or so

employees of the business. Forbes Magazine has written “Infosys is a model of  


transparency, not just for corporate India, but for companies everywhere…”  Some of the values of this organisation are set out in simple language: “One should be humble, h umble, have respect for   competitors and a healthy sense of paranoia, else we will disappear like dew on a sunny morning”.   More from Infosys: “When in doubt, disclose” and “We would    just like to be known as decent, honest and trustworthy t rustworthy people and then as smart people”.  – in 1996 Of course, words and actions go well together   – Infosys set up the Infosys Foundation which since then has funded medical facilities for remote rural areas, created pension schemes, provided aid for orphans and street children, adopted a “library for every school” campaign that so far has  financed 5,500 libraries in rural Government schools and has paid for the reconstruction of old schools. The company truly “walks the talk”.  That is why I would like to see Mr Narayana Murthy as a full time global ambassador for the Indian business message, spreading the goodwill of his powerfully ethical brand across the world of Indian business. As I have written before, India has given the world Ganesh, Krishna, the Upanishads, Buddha, the spirit of Diwali and in more recent times the wisdom of  Mahatma Gandhi and others. Western business is ready to learn; what a communication opportunity for “brand India”.   Why are Infosys and the example of Mr Murthy so important in

the west? It is important simply because many leading business schools and commentators are asking whether the moral value of  honesty has gone missing among western business leaders.  Almost daily we see court cases or media coverage and consistently the businesses and their leaders involved have tried to “cover up”, or disguise, some problem rather than  perform the simple act of coming clean and telling the truth. Yet there is plenty of evidence of a connection between strong moral principles and business success (one of the best books is Moral Intelligence: Enhancing Business Performance and Leadership Success, Wharton School Publishing, by Doug Lennick and Fred Kiel). Take it even further, as a PR practitioner I have always believed that a policy of absolute honesty at all times should be at the top of corporate agendas, providing the best long term form of  risk management. As we say in this industry, “you cannot carve  rotten wood” and companies with a moral vacuum at the top  find this out the hard way. Despite this reality and the healing power of truth, when business hits a tough spot too often there are teams of  managers sitting around debating how we will “handle” the  communication challenge - and it seems to be rare that anyone simply says “let‟s just tell the truth.”  The authors of Moral Intelligence believe that good morality and high performance do not come together just by accident. They claim that successful leaders always attribute their  accomplishments to a combination of their business savvy and their adherence to a moral code. This was graphically expressed by Ed Zore, CEO of  Northwestern Mutual and he is quoted in the book as saying: “Being moral – which to me means being fair, predictable, upfront and not devious – all of this has been very important in my career. Everybody knows what I stand for. People know that we will never, ever be deceitful. We won‟t leave a nickel on the   table, but in the end our word is our bond, and this is a real


advantage in business because people want to deal with us and want to deal with me.”   The authors believe that intangibles such as either moral intelligence or emotional intelligence are “difficult for your   competition to copy. Many corporate leaders ignore these differentiating competencies because they are soft skills that are difficult to measure. In recent years, however, an increasing

Ethics, success and leadership the Infosys way 64 Tennyson St Elwood VIC 3184 T: +613 9531 4099 F: +613 9531 4799 E: [email protected] W:  – 0 – 

number of organizations have realized the performance benefits of emotional intelligence”.  They point out that moral intelligence is new to the analytical playing field, and highlight four key principles that can sustain moral intelligence: Integrity; Responsibility; Compassion; Forgiveness. Integrity is creating harmony between what we believe and how we act, doing what we know is right (and this definitely includes telling the truth at all times). Responsibility is a person who is willing to take responsibility for their own actions, and the consequences  – only by taking this responsibility do you stay true to core values. Compassion is broadened to include caring about others, which theneffect, showsbecause our respect for others. has a boomerang generally whenIt aalso compassionate person is in trouble, we return compassion to them. Forgiveness is a key principle because without a tolerance for mistakes and acknowledgement of human imperfection, we are likely to be rigid and inflexible, thereby reducing the common good. The authors describe the importance of moral intelligence this way: “Moral intelligence directs our other forms of intelligence  to do something worthwhile. Moral intelligence gives our life purpose. Without moral intelligence, we would be able to do things and experience events, but they would lack meaning.”    And they promise: “the more you devel develop op your moral  intelligence, the more positive changes you will notice, not only in your work but in your personal well-being. Staying true to your moral compass will not eliminate life‟s inevitable conflicts.  “The evidence is clearWithout – moralit,intelligence plays a risks big part in corporate success. your organisation devastating financial failure.”  Wouldn‟t it be nice to see more leaders within corporations going for the truth as a core policy, with statements such as “our communication policy is total honesty”? 

By Stephen Manallack

Stephen Manallack is a communication consultant, professional speaker and trainer. His training programs include creating a corporate communication culture, and how managers and leaders can create engaged employees. Stephen is the author of “You Can   Communicate” (Pearson 2002).   He is a member of the committee of management of  the Australia India Business Council. Telephone: +613 9531 4099 Website: Email: [email protected]


Ethics, success and leadership the Infosys way (cont)


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Infosys employees actively participate in the welfare of the local community. Our Development Centers (DCs) in India make a difference through several Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Our employees organize and contribute to welfare programs, especially for underprivileged children. We support the activities of institutes and Non-Government Organizations Organiz ations (NGOs) dedicated to healthcare and education, and campaigns for skills development and community welfare.


CSR activities at Infosys DCs in 2009 Bangalore DC 

Rakum School for the visually challenged: Mitr, our local CSR team, visited the Rakum School for the visually challenged. Mobility, an exercise in which team members walked

 blindfolded using canes, helped them empathize with the children. The team organized games and distributed chocolates and stationery. an d Notebook distribution: The Infynite Smiles CSR team has been distributing books and stationery to underprivileged children across Karnataka since 2001. In 2009, the team touched more than 45,000 lives, including the tribal community. We collected donations amounting to Rs. 10,00,000. Our drive has been actively supported by the Dream School Foundation, Ramana Clinic, Sri Vivekananda Youth Movement, Chrysalis and other NGOs.

Bhubaneswa Bhubaneswarr DC 

Project Genesis: This initiative of the Infosys Affirmative Action Program (IAAP) prepares students for a career in the Business Process Outsourcing industry. The Th e project was launched in Orissa in 2007 along with the state government to enhance the skills of academicians. Till date, 515 professors have been trained to make learning more focused by combining traditional teaching methods with modern education. In 2009, 70 professors underwent a 12-day training  program.

Chandigarh DC 

Behavior and social skills development: Prayaas, our local CSR team, organized a program

where 60 children from the Panchkula slum showcased their creativity in group activities. The children were imparted training in social etiquette. Medical camp and cleanliness drive: Prayaas has adopted Tanda village to drive social transformation in the region. Our volunteers engaged residents in a cleanliness drive to prevent malaria. A free camp for eye and general medical check up was organized. Medicines and spectacles prescribed by doctors at the camp were distributed free of cost. The team collected data on health and sanitation related issues to address them.

Chennai DC 


Educare: Sneham, our local CSR team, manages a dedicated intranet portal to help employees support education of the children of our housekeeping and security staff. In 2009, 1,500 members contributed approximately Rs. 14,00,000 to support more than 370 students. Meritorious students were awarded for their performance. A special award was presented to a girl child with exceptional recitation skills. Helping the visually challenged: Infoscions partner with Nethrodaya, an NGO that works with visually challenged children. Our volunteers regularly conduct weekend w eekend reading sessions. In 2009, we organized a South S outh India inter-state sports festival with modified versions of cricket, volleyball and chess. Facilities for rural schools: Volunteers constructed a water tank to supply drinking d rinking water to 1,000 students of the Avanippoor Government Higher Secondary School. We have been donating notebooks to the Anoor School since 2005. In 2009, we donated a water tank to the school. We also distributed notebooks to the children of Infosys’ support staff.  

Hyderabad DC 

PC donation drive: Mamata, our local CSR team, donated more than 105 PCs to institutions that undertake non-commercial and public activities. We have already invited requests for the next list of beneficiaries. Day of Change: Every Wednesday, drop boxes are placed at the campus entrance and exit  points, food courts and parking area to collect coins from Infoscions for social welfare welfare activities.

Mysore DC 

Notebook distribution: Soften, our local CSR team, distributed 57,000 books, 36,000 pencils and 3,600 erasers in the Notebook Distribution Drive 2009. Underprivileged students from various schools have been benefiting from this drive since 2002. Language and computer education: Basic computer education was imparted to the security and housekeeping staff of the DC. Our team also helped 10 guards improve their English language skills. Summer camp: A month-long workshop was conducted in May 2009 at Karunya Mane, a child rehabilitation center. 30 children were taught art and craft, dance, Math, English, environment awareness, traffic rules, health and fitness, and social etiquette. Quiz contests co ntests helped the children assess their general knowledge. Blood donation: More than 80 Infoscions donated blood in a special camp conducted in collaboration with the Mysore Rotary and Chandrakala Hospital.


schoo l for dropouts run School for dropouts: Our team works with Kaliyuva Mane, an informal school  by the Divya Deepa Trust. We interact with children in open classrooms through painting competitions and games.

Pune DC 

Sparsh - A Healing Touch, our local CSR team, is a registered NGO. In 2009, we conducted several programs: Eye donation camp: More than 330 Infoscions pledged to donate their eyes in a special camp organized with the Ruby Hall Clinic and Eye Bank Association of India. Play and Live (PAL): We use sports to boost the confidence of underprivileged und erprivileged children, teach them various skills and change their outlook. We donated sports equipment including carom and chess boards, and prizes such as watches, perfumes and chocolates. Blood donation camp: 700 volunteers donated blood during a two-day camp in June 2009.

Three blood banks - ISIS Blood Bank, KEM and Janakalyan - participated. Doctors highlighted the need for safe blood donation at the camp.

Thiruvananthapuram DC 

Notebook distribution: Infosys CEO and Managing Director Kris Gopalakrishnan inaugurated a notebook distribution drive, which benefited 4,000 students in 2009.

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More than a workplace, a melting pot of cultures

Infosys celebrated the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development Devel opment on May 21, 2010 with a fortnight-long campaign that highlighted the importance of cultural diversity at the workplace. The Diversity Offices of Infosys Technologies and Infosys BPO created awareness among Infoscions about the nuances of diversity and inclusivity    

Language: InfyTV, the in-house TV channel, broadcasts courses to learn five languages Culture: A quiz on culture enabled a better understanding of cultural diversity


Cuisine: Food courts at Infosys Development Centers worldwide served cuisine from different regions Global perspectives: On May 25, Infosys CEO and MD Kris Gopalakrishnan delivered the keynote address at a panel discussion on 'Cultural Alliance and Diversity: Gateway for Enhanced Economic Development' at Infosys' campus in Chennai. The panelists included Bryan Dalton from the U.S. Consul, N Ram from The Hindu, Akhila Srinivasan from the Netherlands Consul and Nikolay A Listopadav from the Russian Consul, P.W.C. Da Davidar, vidar, Principal Secretary, Information Technology, Government Government of Tamil Nadu and B. Santhanam, Managing Director, Saint-Gobain Glass India Ltd. On June 4, Dr. Walter Fust, President of, a global network of  institutions in applied ethics, made a presentation on 'Working Across Borders' to Infoscions across Europe via live video.

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Infosys has more than 100,000 employees emplo yees from 83 nationalities working together in an inclusive environment. The workplace recognizes the unique skills of professionals irrespective of gender, ethnicity or nationality. Our 'Creating a Common Ground' campaign creates awareness among employees about the languages and cultures of the countries coun tries where we operate. A team of culture coaches initiates new recruits into Infosys through the 'iExperience' program by b y providing continuous diversity and culture sensitivity training.  training. Infosys' Women's Inclusivity Network  offers opportunities for   professional development to women employees through mentoring and focuses on work-life  balance by creating alternative work models.

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Promoting education and research

The Infosys USA Foundation supports the New York City (NYC) Science Education Initiative to spread  science and math literacy spread literacy  among students of underserved communities. The Foundation provided a grant of US$ 380,000 to the New York Academy of Sciences for  implementing the program in New York schools and Citizen Schools of New Jersey. Project Genesis bridges the skill gap among undergraduate students - between industry requirements and non-engineering graduate education. In 2011-12, the project mentored 16,762 students and 365 academicians from 138 institutions. Campus Connect program enhances the curriculum and enriches the talent pool of engineering and management colleges. During 2011-12, we engaged with 474 engineering institutions to train 1,400 faculty members, who in turn trained over 31,000 students. Since inception, over  7,200 faculty and over 153,000 students have been trained under this program. The program has  been published as a case study in the World Economic Forum's 2011 report on ‘Talent Mobility Good Practices’. 

Infosys Science Foundation

Foundation  honors outstanding contributions of Indian researchers to pure and Infosys Science Foundation  applied sciences with the annual Infosys Prize. The laureates receive a 24-carat 24 -carat gold medallion, a citation and a cash prize of 50 lakh, the highest prize money for researchers in India. The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)-Infosys Foundation Award in Computing Compu ting Sciences recognizes the contributions of young scientists to a contemporary innovation. The annual award carries a prize of US$ 150,000 from the Infosys Foundation.


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Our social contract inspires employees to contribute to community communit y welfare, environment sustainability and digital literacy. In 2011-12, Infosys organized several programs, enabling enablin g employees to give back to the society: Volunteering Our 151,000 employees are at the heart of our volunteering movement. The sabbatical policy for  community service was launched in October 2008.


The policy enables employees to involve invo lve in community development projects while receiving monetary support from the company. Employees are also given the choice of coming back to normal work schedules on the successful completion of the projects in a time frame of six months to one year. Green Connect - our employee volunteer Eco group at Bangalore - provides a platform for  employees to become responsible citizens, initiate and engage in activities to lead the change in creating ecofriendly practices. More More   Emergency aid The Infosys Foundation’s mission is to work in remote regions of India in the areas of  healthcare, education, culture, destitute care and rural development.

The Foundation has constructed 3,000 homes for flood victims in Belgaum, Gulbarga, Dharwad, Gadag, Bagalkot, Bijapur, and Karwar in Karnataka. The has,supplies over theand years, a helping hand disasters and calamities withFoundation food, essential for lent rebuilding lives. In during the lastnatural 15 years, thousands have been  benefited with the Foundation's support and aid amounting to over US$ 8,316,008. More  More  Digital empowerment Launched in 2008, SPARK SP ARK is aimed at raising the aspirations of students. The SPARK SP ARK portfolio includes three programs - Rural Reach Program, Catch Them Young and Spark Guru. This year, SPARK touched the lives of 397,819 students and faculty members. Among the students trained, 47% were girls and 67% came from rural schools. More   More Global workforce Our workforce comprises employees from various countries and from multi-cultural  backgrounds. Our diversity office has several innovative programs that foster diversity diversity and inclusivity at workplace. ‘Creating Common Ground’ is one su ch program that creates awareness about different cultures across the globe and specifically where we have h ave our operations.

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Shaping policies We have continued our engagement with a number of external ex ternal forums such as World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD); Business Action for Sustainable Development (BASD); National Association of SoftwareCompanies (NASSCOM) India, on green infrastructure and diversity practices; Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), India, for   benchmarking energy intensity for commercial buildings and the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC). More More   Promoting education and research The Infosys USA Foundation supports the New York City (NYC) Science Education Initiative to literacy  among students of underserved communities. spread  science and math literacy spread

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