Information on individual educational components (ECTS-Course descriptions) per semester

Business Ethics

Degree programme International Business Administration
Subject area Business and Management
Type of degree Bachelor
Summer Semester 2024
Course unit title Business Ethics
Course unit code 025008042210
Language of instruction English
Type of course unit (compulsory, optional) Elective
Teaching hours per week 2
Year of study 2024
Level of the course / module according to the curriculum
Number of ECTS credits allocated 3
Name of lecturer(s) William CRANDALL
Requirements and Prerequisites


Course content
  • Ethics, business and corporate ethics
  • Conventional morality and ethical relativism
  • Utility and utilitarianism, moral obligation
  • Rights and justice
  • Moral responsibility in private and business life
  • Social responsibility of (multinational) companies, corporate social responsibility
  • Leadership ethics
  • Compliance management
Learning outcomes

The ethical aspects of business have become a focus of attention in recent years, and this trend will not abate. Ethical management is a success factor - lack of awareness is a serious business risk.

The students are able to describe the subject area of ethics and economics and to name important institutions in the globalisation of business as well as essential international codes of multinational companies. They know characteristics of leadership ethics and examples of compliance rules.

Students understand the difference between ethical relativism and normative ethics and are able to unfold similarities and differences between the calculus of utilitarianism and the cost-benefit analysis of economics, to distinguish hedonistic from eudaemonistic utilitarianism and to derive connections between reason and the categorical imperative.

Students can formulate moral norms for ethical guidelines of the actions of multinational corporations, causal and moral responsibility can be weighed against each other and a distinction can be made between legal, social and moral responsibility.

The students can analyse CSR reports and compliance manuals and classify their statements with recourse to theoretical concepts. They can point out contradictions with actual practice and justify suggestions for improvements. Students can recognise and examine dilemma situations in the field of business ethics and present their own justified position.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

Interactive course with lecture, case studies, exercises in individual and group work, presentations and homework.

Assessment methods and criteria

Pre-assignment, participation during the seminar in the form of contributions and short presentations (individual or group assignments), post-assignment, individual weighting as determined by the instructors, announcement at the beginning of the semester



Recommended or required reading

Carroll, Archie B.; Buchholtz, Anne (2014): Business and Society: Ethics, Sustainability, and Stakeholder Management. 9. Auflage. Cengage Learning: Stamford, CT.

Mode of delivery (face-to-face, distance learning)

Classes with compulsory attendance