Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 156, Issue 1, pp 273–287 | Cite as

The Potential Use of Sociological Perspectives for Business Ethics Teaching

  • Johannes BrinkmannEmail author
Original Paper


This paper investigates the potential contribution of sociological perspectives for business ethics teaching. After a brief and selective literature review, the paper suggests starting with sociological thinking and three aspects of it: sociological concepts, sociological imagination, and postponed judgment. After presenting two short case teaching stories (about speaking up or not) and three sociological concepts or frameworks (deviance, roles, and power), the potential inspiration value of a sociological checklist for analysing or diagnosing business ethics cases is tried out. As an open ending, some short final suggestions are made for further use of sociological perspectives in both business ethics teaching and research.


Teaching business ethics Sociology Sociological imagination Social deviance Social role Power 



In addition to the anonymous reviewers, a special thanks to Ron Sims, Chandler Johnson, Øyvind Kvalnes, Tore Bakken for any valuable comments. Any remaining imperfection, esp. language-wise, is my own responsibility.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BI Norwegian Business SchoolOsloNorway

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