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IBE use of codes of ethics in business survey

Posted on 18/03/2008
Use of Codes of Ethics in Business

A code of ethics has become a major tool to manage ethical challenges in business. They are typically company-wide codes, which aim to provide guidance for all organisational members. However, companies have also been drafting codes that address specific aspects of their operations, such as ethical challenges in their supply chains.

Analysing such ethical sourcing codes among the FTSE100 firms, Dr Lutz Preuss found a selective approach to prevail. Such codes are prominent in the pharmaceutical and alcoholic beverages industries as well as among retailers and chemical companies. However, none of the companies in the hospitality and leisure industries, in construction or in transportation have one. The codes place a wide range of ethical and environmental demands on suppliers but contain “relatively vague commitments” to principles such as fairness towards suppliers.

The report, written as part of a research project by the Institute of Business Ethics, was launched on Thursday 6 March 2008 and covered in the Financial Times.


Use of Codes of Ethics in Business: 2007 survey & analysis of trends by Simon Webley with Nicole Dando, Niall Gallagher & Lutz Preuss (PDF)


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