- The Oxford Handbook of Professional Service Firms
- List of Figures
- List of Tables
- List of Contributors
- Researching Professional Service Firms: An Introduction and Overview
- Theoretical Perspectives on the Professions
- Dynamics of Regulation of Professional Service Firms: National and Transnational Developments
- Internationalization of Professional Service Firms: Drivers, Forms, and Outcomes
- Organizations and Occupations: Towards Hybrid Professionalism in Professional Service Firms?
- Professional Ethics: Origins, Applications, and Developments
- Sources of Homogeneity and Heterogeneity across Professional Services
- Leadership and Professionals: Multiple Manifestations of Influence in Professional Service Firms
- Governance in Professional Service Firms: From Structural and Cultural to Legal Normative Views
- Strategy and Strategic Alignment in Professional Service Firms
- Service Innovation in Professional Service Firms: A Review and Future Research Directions
- Entrepreneurship and Professional Service Firms
- Marketing and Reputation within Professional Service Firms
- Client Relationships in Professional Service Firms
- Outsourcing and Offshoring of Professional Services
- Interplay of Professional, Bureaucratic, and Entrepreneurial Career Forms in Professional Service Firms
- Teamwork and Collaboration in Professional Service Firms: Evolution, Challenges, and Opportunities
- Professional Service Firms and Identity
- Knowledge and Learning in Professional Service Firms
- Diversity and Inclusion in Professional Service Firms
- Strategic Human Resource Management and Performance Management in Professional Service Firms
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter introduces professional ethics as a specific example of applied or practical ethics. The authors provide a short review of the literature on theoretical and applied ethics in order to give context for the subsequent discussion. They examine three foundational concepts of professional ethics: codes adopted by professional bodies, professional autonomy, and the contested role of gatekeeper. Next, the authors consider ethical pressures experienced by professionals in the non-professional organization (NPO), and then the Professional Service Firm (PSF). Here the authors compare the pressure exerted by employer and clients and examine how so-called “client capture” can become a complex phenomenon when both client and professional are corporate entities. Finally, the chapter considers the challenges for the study of ethics in the PSF highlighted by this account.
Hugh Gunz is Professor of Organizational Behaviour at the University of Toronto and Director of the Institute for Management and Innovation at the University of Toronto Mississauga. He has published papers on the careers of managers, professionals and others, the management of professionals of many kinds, and management education, is the author of the book Careers and Corporate Cultures (1989), and the co-editor of the Handbook of Career Studies (2007). He serves or has served on the editorial boards of a number of journals, including Journal of Professions and Organization, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Managerial Psychology, and Emergence, and is a former chair of the Careers Division of the Academy of Management. He has PhDs in Chemistry and Organizational Behaviour.
Sally Gunz is Professor of Business Law and Professional Ethics in the School of Accounting and Finance, University of Waterloo, Canada. Her primary research interests centre around the legal and ethical responsibilities of professionals and, increasingly, how professionals make ethical decisions, and what factors impact those decisions. She has studied professionals in both employed and private practice settings. She is the author of The New Corporate Counsel (Carswell: 1991) and several academic studies relating to in-house lawyers, lawyers in private practice, accountants and actuaries. She is a past-President of the Academy of Legal Studies in Business and the former director of the Centre for Accounting Ethics.
Ronit Dinovitzer is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto, where she is cross appointed to the Institute for Management and Innovation. She is also a Faculty Fellow at the American Bar Foundation in Chicago, where she is Co-Director of the Research Group on Legal Diversity, and she is an Affiliated Faculty in Harvard’s Program on the Legal Profession. As a sociologist of the professions her research focuses on the social organization of lawyers, the role of labor markets, and the effects of culture on professional work. Recent projects include the “After the JD” study, the first national longitudinal study of law graduates in the US, the “Law and Beyond” Study, the first national study of law graduates in Canada, and a Canadian study on Ethics, the Professional Service Firm and Corporate Governance (with Hugh and Sally Gunz).
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