‘Ethical Blindness’ – Kriti Jain Assistant Professor at IE Business School, Madrid, Spain

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An interesting session which discussed a crucial issue, Ethical dilemmas at the workplace. The speaker began by addressing the participants as to what was their understanding of this issue and how they came up with ways to tackle it. The participants responded by sharing experiences from their professions and the possible implications of ethical dilemmas. She then gave an interesting example of how in some countries almost everyone is in favor of organ donation whereas, in some other countries, it is quite the opposite. She questioned the audience about the probable reasons behind this & whether this could be linked to ethical dilemmas.

She began by explaining the origin of the word ‘ethics’ & the philosophers who gave their views on the subject. More importantly, she discussed the two main approaches in ethics, namely, the Utilitarian & the Deontological approach. She explained each by giving the Trolley & the Footbridge example, respectively. These approaches are contrary to each other wherein one is an impersonal, logical & explicit (Utilitarian, System 1) and the other is personal, emotional automatic & implicit (Deontological, System-2). She further explained boundedness in terms of Rationality, Awareness & Ethicality. It also included the reasons behind implicit attitudes, discrimination & superiority behavior present in individuals.

She also shared experiences & insights from her own research & concluded the discussion with a Q & A session.

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