Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 117, Issue 4, pp 777–788 | Cite as

The Worldwide Academic Field of Business Ethics: Scholars’ Perceptions of the Most Important Issues



We conducted an international survey of 211 scholars with expertise in business ethics. Each respondent was asked to identify the three most important issues that business ethics academia will face in the coming decade. Using content analytic procedures, responses were categorized and analyzed for commonalities. The results suggest that the most important issues facing business ethics academia in the future will be the following: (1) issues relating to business ethics education such as curriculum, pedagogy, faculty, and accreditation (2) the credibility of the business ethics field, (3) environmental issues, (4) issues relating to business ethics research such as research tools and quality of business ethics research (5) the decline of ethical behavior in society and organizations, (6) corporate social responsibility (CSR), (7) globalization, and (8) the institutionalization of ethics into business. We maintain that these issues have important teaching and research implications for the future sustainability of the business ethics discipline.


Sustainability Business ethics academic community Business ethics discipline Development of the field 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Huntsman School of BusinessUtah State UniversityLoganUSA

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