Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 67, Issue 4, pp 421–433 | Cite as

Using Live Cases to Teach Ethics

  • Victoria McWilliamsEmail author
  • Afsaneh Nahavandi


This paper describes a live ethics case project that can be used to teach ethics in a broad variety of business classes. The live case differs from regular cases in that it involves a current situation. Students select an on-going or current event that involves ethical violations and write a case about it. They then present their case and run a debate about the challenges and issues outlined in the case and the actions that could have or should have been taken. The dynamic project fulfills the key criteria for effective ethics education since it increases awareness of the complexity of ethical challenges, allows application of concepts, creates a personal emotional engagement in the case, is relevant, holds students accountable for their position, and creates a setting that encourages students to think critically about ethics.


application of ethics critical thinking emotional engagement in ethics increased awareness of ethics live cases student accountability teaching ethics teaching ethics in finance 


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The authors would like to thank the anonymous reviewers and Ali R. Malekzadeh for comments on earlier drafts of this manuscript. Thanks also go to Villanova University’s Center for Responsible Leadership and Governance for supporting this project.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of FinanceVillanova University, College of Commerce and FinanceVillanovaU.S.A.

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