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Reloading vocational ethics in international management


Moral and ethical is all about human inclinations, from time to time treated as natural. However, the very human survival is not sustainable within natural background only. Vagueness of instinctive features of personality became a notorious subject of intellectual tradition.

UDC 334.028

Konstantin M. Olkhovikov,

Doctor of Philosophy, professor

Ural Federal University named after the first President of Russia Boris Yeltsin e-mail: k.m.olkhovikov AT urfu.ru SPIN-code - 9673-9492 Ekaterinburg, Russia

Modern civilization represents post-industrial, post-modern, and post-totalitarian stage of global development. Modern ethical situation reflects mostly competitive stimuli of differing social subjects - from individuals to global corporation, so, questions of liberty and equality concerning freedom of personality and information dominate modern agenda.

Actual imperative of today ethical life is the return to human personality, in any case, the only unique resource of possible future evolution of human race. Public and private rules of peoples’ business activity make sense through discussion and application. Moral criteria of awareness for entrepreneurship and managing activity reflect the only adequate direction of personal selfrealization. The meaning of spontaneous social regulation in human conduct is now the mainstream of cognition, politics, and economy.

Adaptation, gain (including goal setting as well), integration, and value patterns reproduce the backbone of any viable organization and any consistent social action. This hierarchy of functions is reproducible from norms and norms only that represent the integrative resource of any complex system. Complexity consists in unification of elements differing by nature. Economy leads to adaptation. Politics has no sense without gain. Culture reproduces our missions’ horizon. Only social regulation can bring all these functions, subsystems, and activities together. That is what the management ethics exists for.

Key words:

Spontaneous social regulation, culture, myth, modern civilization, consumerism, management ethics, vocational ethics, human personality, administrative priorities, human survival.

Morals has a prehistoric root, while ethical usually flourishes in history of culture. Still, the former and the latter are all about human inclinations, from time to time treated as natural. However, the very human survival is not sustainable within natural background only. Vagueness of instinctive features of personality became a notorious subject of intellectual tradition. Are we vegetarians by birth, or are we animals of prey? Is our aggressiveness inborn, or is it conditioned socially?

Human survival is a group matter, and the success of this enterprise is non-natural by itself. Culture starts where nature is missing. Cultural project is a compensation of natural human shortcomings and incompleteness. The latter is nothing but open-endedness. Thus, we do not rely on the instinctive schemes of survival only - because they are utterly lacking. Therefore, civilizational instruments have dynamics of their own; crucial risks to human existence are absolutely impossible outside human instrumentality. “Yet, the ‘moral instincts’ and ‘moral institutions’ that are essential for cooperation in such groups are by no means necessarily adapted to the problems that have to be solved in order to sustain a mutually advantageous system of cooperation among a large number of virtual strangers” [1, p. 496].

Culture is unnatural in the sense of being the instrumental complex providing the overcoming of nature’s challenges. There are outer and inner aspects of culture. These parts of the human instrumental complex closely intertwined; nevertheless, their relations are intrinsically problematic. Therefore, we can consider civilisation as the outer material human instrumentality, while culture is apparently the inner immaterial human intentionality. These dialectics of inner and outer is not homogeneous, but it is hierarchical.

Civilisation is apparently ambivalent in relation to environment and to human experience. The infrastructural components of civilisation determine our macro-scale interactions, when the super-structural elements of social conduct are determined by our micro-scale modes of behaviour. The more sophisticated are our civilizational instruments, the more individual competences equalise in day-to-day sphere. Therefore, we are inevitably turning to narrow-practicing professionals who are easily manipulated in their common human experiences, including so-called common sense.

Culture could be adequately although naively described as a spiritual sphere of social life. On the other hand, no culture characteristic is possible without classification of artefacts that are material. Nevertheless, ‘material culture’ is a self- contradicting notion as such. There could be no culture without any assumption on non-material sphere of existence. Thus, material and outer aspect of culture reproduces itself by human activity and activities products, while ideal and inner aspect of culture correlates with human soul - that is feelings, mind, senses, meanings, etc. “Humans are cultural species” [2, p. 1], all in all.

Overall, cognition and applied investigations of culture starts with outer premises and goes through symbolic interpretations to the inner meanings and senses. Ethical sphere of life belongs to pragmatic components of human motivation. Practical and ideal, real and symbolic, social and personal, public and private, - all these contexts interact through morality [3]. Ethical is also a knowledge of morality.

Modern civilization represents post-industrial, post-modern, and post- totalitarian stage of global development. Still the basic fruits of preceding historic and social stages are abundantly available and act energetically. Modern ethical situation reflects mostly competitive stimuli of differing social subjects

from individuals to global corporation, so, questions of liberty and equality concerning freedom of personality and information dominate modern agenda. Still, the background of mythological sub-consciousness, religious consciousness, and rational critique are the main and exclusive resources of actual morals as well as actual social regulation and social rule in general.

Actual imperative of today ethical life is the return to human personality, in any case, the only unique resource of possible future evolution of human race. Public and private rules of peoples’ business activity make sense through discussion and application. Moral criteria of awareness for entrepreneurship and managing activity reflect the only adequate direction of personal selfrealization. The meaning of spontaneous social regulation in human conduct is now the mainstream of cognition, politics, and economy.

Management was born at the last half of the nineteenth century as an accomplice of engineering profession. Two prerequisites make impractical any speculation about probable earlier or pre-modern forms of management. That is primary economic and civic liberties. There could be no management alongside slavery or totalitarian ideological manipulation. That is why talking about ancient managers or soviet managers could be but metaphorical.

No matter how spontaneous and immaterial morals is, in the end of the day all comes to social instituting. Moral aspect is not mere prints of spiritual rule, but the rule itself in its integrity of absolutely soul-moving and relatively flesh-embodied. However, the relative objectification is not exclusively passive; on the contrary, it consists mostly in behavioural perpetrations of individuals. “Now, the term ‘social evolution’ can be defined as a process by which individuals instead of attaching themselves with old group norm detach themselves and thus, a new norm is achieved” [4, p.11].

Additionally, social rule status is usually objectified in relation to individual, although in relation to social group or community it is usually incorporated [5]. Materialisation of intents is intrinsically bipolar, exemplifies inner-outer correlation of behavioural patterns.

Let us consider example of a private lonely trip to some neighbourhood town or may be local village but for the first time. First, mentality and mores as rational and emotional in typical intents of daily business activity appeal to our attention. Typical features of rational reactions up to external and internal events are conditioned culturally, when similar events lead to similar reactions in differing individuals who belong to the same culture. Individual variations within a recognisable range of emotional reactions goes as inevitable supplement to rational similarity. That is how mentality and mores interact and interplay, although evolving in parallel and able to grasp the individual concentration or public attention in wholesale dealing. These contextual and structural choices demonstrate humans as abstract beings dependant on symbolic conditioning. Symbols prevail operationally or emotionally exemplifying two pole preferences of human instrumentality.

Objective criteria of corporate obligation in manager’s individual selfrealisation pose other fundamental reasons for misleadingly casual and occasional happenings in daily routine guidance. These criteria usually do not work in clear way that is obvious to all participants of a given situation, but always come in scoop with a number of pragmatic, instrumental, and temporal factors, which appeal to measures of their own. Human personality as a whole could never become the subject of a scientific investigation; still, this wholeness works regularly as a prerequisite of comprehension, explanation, and the very communication in public and private social life.

Classifications and typologies of direction styles are never free from social regulation deductions [6, c. 343]. Moral patterns typology of modern Russia business community show this perfectly well.

Peculiarity of modern Russia spiritual situation is still outside any plausible explanation. That is why it is important to keep in observation a number of aspects of this socio-cultural complex, and to guess any pre-conclusive patterns of desired (from explanatory point of view) integrity. Surely, we must talk about system, and not only one, but a real complex of systematic fragments and systematic pre-conditions.

Firstly, we should talk about orthodox Christianity. It is not homogeneous, except the basic feature, opposing any eastern orthodox to a western Christian. And that is the schism between mystic and rational meaning of salvation. Orthodox Christianity has no canonical law in the western manner. On the other hand, orthodoxy has inner conflicts of its own, in some sense reminding the conflicts between Catholicism and Protestantism during and since Reformation. But social contexts differ, and in Russia we have some unexpected political circumstance and consequences of religious conflicts. Even bolshevism could be adequately understood only as a quasi-religious phenomenon (and N. Berdyaev demonstrated this fact perfectly well).

Secondly, we should take into account the so-called geographic factor which in case of Russian history is more than a destiny. Russian love of motherland has no equivalents in western types of patriotism, only some fatherland codes artificially and ideologically reproduce some Russian version of western nationalism. We have no sustainable forms of nationalism in Russia; still our love of motherland could be comprehended only as a form of pathology or anomaly by a decent western observer.

Thirdly, Russia is an intrinsic factor of western system of motivation [7], and there it should stay, but is Russia European?

Worldviews power in management theory and practice is not the province of classical theory, but an actual matter in fluent daily activities [8]. Ethical principles of pragmatism and the moral meaning of social technologies in managing reproduce the habits - rules relationship, described by W. James. “The boundary line of mental is certainly vague. It is better not to be pedantic, but to let the science be as vague as its subject, and include such phenomena as these if by so doing we can throw any light on the main business in hand” [9, p. 6].

That still works but with one simple amendment. Namely, the intensive informational interactive space changes the priorities of motivation not by goal setting, but by missions’ emulation. Social-anthropological parameters of emulation, partnership, community, and publicity are also multifarious in modern business organisations. The semantics of daily interactions and reification of symbolical gestures reproduce the influence of differing cultures and cultural patterns. Public factor is not privatised exclusively by PR technologies. Publicity is a complex result of social regulative factors, including personal and private motivations [10]. Open and closed social interactions reproduce the old dilemma of social trust and social contract. Any meaningful organizational project is impossible outside these contexts of publicly relevant approvals and disapprovals. Probably, M. Oakshot was right when he judged public opinion in general as the most senseless thing in the world. The reason is that most individuals simply have nothing to say, they can just repeat some vague versions of common sense judgements. Of course, classical Durkheimian belief in public opinion as an object for moral enlightenment by social sciences also misses the point, alongside the opposing hard core moral conservatism. Norms and deviant behaviour go side by side, and genetically, hand in hand. Instituting of social norms is, in fact, as well as logically, the key reason of social deviation. At least, you cannot deviate without any standard criteria of your behaviour. There are no less than five scenarios of adaptation that give rise to accomplishment of differing trajectories of deviant behaviour. According to R. Merton typology we have conformism, ritualism, innovation, retreat, and revolt as results of accepting - rejecting socially approved goals and means. And in case of revolt we also have the replacement of these goals and means by their contrarieties.

Organizational structures go alongside moral order of social interaction

. Types of social solidarity are normative by origin and impersonalized by execution. Between two utterly opposing versions of mechanic and organic solidarity (E. Durkheim, again) we find a variety of fluctuation on pragmatic and mediation levels. These are structures-and-prescriptions complexes of different historic and cultural origins - from archaic integrity scenarios to open- ended postmodern substructures. The mostly widespread are hordes, social segments, and net communities.

Planning levels in organization are surrounded by typical moral contradictions, coming with coordination of goal setting and gain, as well as a variety of choices to be made occasionally. Common sense hierarchy of stereotypes - algorithms - instruments - goals - values also gives rise to frames of social interaction; and these interactive situations usually do not have any distinctive precedents. Questions of mission and strategy have become universal criteria at all levels of management - from technical instructing to corporation building

. Still, the most difficult aspect of any socially embedded decision-making process comes with interpreting the dominant rules of problematic situation. That is why theoretical models of social act and social system turn into pragmatic pattern variables that are ad hoc.

Inner and outer regulations of motivation we can interpret effectively only in some kind of an integral model, or at least, an integrating image of perception. Manners and mores are not as plain as they appear at first glance. These typical forms of publicly approved conduct, including symbolic gestures, and emotional manifestations and expectations, hide the logical web of mentality in its rational - sensual foundations. Manners creep into public discussions with the imperative of precision in acts and deeds, while mores lead us to the phantoms of individualization and are utterly unpredictable, hence, widely neglected in typical social management.

Norms and ideal patterns are habitually mediated by codes; still an intense semantic opposition between norms and ideals do exist. Norms pave the way for so-called natural frames of social regulation, when the territory of forbidden acts is strictly nominated. On the other side, ideals vaguely broaden the boundaries of social regulation, then and there being urgent in stimulating the enhancement of moral standards. Real social groups live and justify their existence by codes. The former are usually mentioned as normative codes, but their mission lies in the sphere of clarifying and specifying pragmatically adequate ideals. Vocational ideals are the most distinct in moral public sphere. However, socio-cultural complexes include semantically incomparable sets of codes and every such complex is unique. Religious, political, and civil codes are externally evaluated, while vocational codes are internally conditioned, hence, selfdetermined. So, corporate morals are ineffective and fake without any elements of professional ethics, vocational codes, above all.

Moral limitations point out to fundamental issue of control. Ethical criteria of control are the most influential from a logical point of view. Any judicial rules can only but specify or contextualize pragmatically already existing moral bid. Moral norms functionally structure socially oriented management which is dysfunctional without any moral specifications. However, morality has no face value; it is invisible in practical products of corporation. Nowadays marketing has become the forefront social obligations for effectiveness.

Continuity of human social acting is theoretically obvious and pragmatically neglected. Not stereotypes but scenarios of exchange create the meaningful space in social life where morality prevails [13]. Moral motives come ‘as above the situation’. “But would the disharmonious person have to fight of moral motives” [14, p. 173]. Business interests are not easy object for public analysis; still, such analysis could give a clear emulative advantage and pragmatically boost any entrepreneurship project. Moral impartiality converts into effectiveness. Interaction correlates to social situations of managing people’s needs and wishes, while securing organizational goals and resources. Global and local in business mores counteract too often in contemporary economic situations [15]. Mores pave the way for socially relevant decision-making in management.


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Моральное и этическое в целом отражают человеческие склонности, которые иногда кажутся естественными. Однако, выживание людей невозможно в исключительных пределах природного окружения. Расплывчатость инстинктивных черт личности стала пресловутым предметом интеллектуальной традиции.

Ольховиков Константин Михайлович,

доктор философских наук, профессор,

ФГАОУ ВПО «УрФУ имени первого Президента России Б.Н.Ельцина» e-mail: k.m.olkhovikov AT urfu.ru г.Екатеринбург, Россия

Современная цивилизация представляет собой постиндустриальную, пост-современную, пост-тоталитарную стадию глобального развития. Современная этическая ситуация по большей части отражает конкурирующие стимулы различных социальных субъектов - от индивидов до глобальных корпораций, так что, вопросы свободы и равенства, затрагивающие свободу личности и информации, доминируют на повестке дня. Актуальные императив сегодняшней этической жизни - это возвращение человеческой личности, в любом случае, как единственного уникального ресурса возможной будущей эволюции человеческого рода. Публичные и частные правила деловой активности людей обретают смысл благодаря спорам и действиям. Моральные критерии сознательного предпринимательства и управления отражают единственно возможное направление самореализации личности. Значение спонтанной социальной регуляции в человеческом поведении стало магистралью познания, политики, экономики.

Адаптация, целеполагание и целедостижение, интеграция, ценностные образцы присутствуют в основе любой жизнеспособной организации или любого последовательного социального действия. Эта иерархия функций воспроизводима исключительно через нормы, которые и выражают интегративный ресурс любой сложной системы. Сложность состоит в объединении элементов различной природы. Экономика ведет к адаптации. Политика не имеет смысла без достижения целей. Культура воспроизводит горизонты дальнейших задач. И только социальная регуляция может соединить все эти функции, подсистемы, действия. И эго то, для чего существует этика менеджмента.

Ключевые слова:

Спонтанная социальная регуляция, культура, миф, современная цивилизация, п, этика менеджмента, профессиональная этика, человеческая личность, административные приоритеты, человеческое выживание.