The ethical complexity of “backscratching”

business_ethics_highlights_2Conflict of interest is an important modern ethical concept, and “backscratching” (as in, “you scratch my back — do me a favour — and I’ll scratch yours”) is a common form of it. As the author below points out, returning a favour is generally an ethically good thing. Figuring out just when it’s NOT a good thing is challenging. >>>

LINK: The ethics of “backscratching”

The notion of reciprocity plays a foundational role in our ethical order. Most prominently, variations of the Golden Rule are evidently found in all of the world’s major religions. There is what could be considered negative reciprocity (“an eye for an eye”) as well as the positive sort (“the best place for [an Eskimo] to store his surplus is in someone’s else’s stomach.”)….

What do you think?

(For more about conflict of interest, including a definition and some guidance, see: Conflict of Interest Toolkit.)


Brought to you by:
business_ethics_highlights

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: