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Business and Policy Areas
Business and Policy Areas

Report Describes New Approach to Managing Ethical Performance

June 29, 2005

“What would it take for us to embed ethics in our businesses and institutions of higher education?”  That was the key question that motivated the Business-Higher Education Forum (BHEF) Ethics Initiative.  The answer is explained in Embedding Ethics in Business and Higher Education: From Leadership to Management Imperative, a recently released BHEFreport outlining a new approach to incorporating ethics into organizational culture.  The objectives of the initiative include: diagnosing the problem of corporate corruption; understanding how organizational ethics is currently managed; developing a means of weaving ethics into the fabric of an organization and testing application of that strategy to college campuses.  The methodology described in the report builds on the success of recent quality management initiatives and draws parallels between managing quality and ethical performance in an organization.  

The principles of improving ethical performance described are applicable to both business and institutions of higher education.  The authors recognize that colleges and universities have both unique ethical challenges, such as intercollegiate athletics, medical centers and commercially sponsored research and development, and a mission to student moral development that their corporate counterparts do not.  As a result, the report includes a chapter specific to the distinct challenges of higher education institutions.

For more information about the Business-Higher Education Forum, visit their web site.