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date: 19 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the role and influence of relativism, multiculturalism, and universal norms in business ethics. It attempts to answer the question whether moral standards are merely personal opinions and cultural conventions or whether some moral standpoints transcend the personal and the cultural. It concludes that there is a universal common morality, but that it allows for moral disagreement and legitimate differences of opinion about how to render universal norms specific for business contexts. Thus, certain norms constrain corporate activities in all cultures while other norms constrain corporate conduct only in specific contexts.

Keywords: business ethics, relativism, multiculturalism, universal norms, moral standards, corporate conduct

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