Kant’s Humanistic Business Ethics

In this article I investigate how Kant’s philosophy contributes universalistic arguments in favor of a humanistic ethics which is of great practical relevance in business contexts.

Kant moved the idea of freedom to the center of his philosophy, arguing that from a reflection on the nature of human freedom a self-critical assessment of its morally appropriate use could be gleaned.

Therein, that is, in construing his ethics from (subjective) self-reflection rather than resting it on presumed (objective) values, and in construing norms of interpersonal validity from the individual perspective (‘bottom-up’) rather than through (‘top-down’) references to prearranged ethical or metaphysical orders, lies Kant’s innovation in ethics theory.