Virtue in Business: Alliance Boots and an Empirical Exploration of MacIntyre's Conceptual Framework

  • Moore G
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Abstract

This paper contextualizes before summarizing a conceptual framework for virtue ethics in organizations that has been developed by drawing upon the work of the moral philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre. Conducting empirical work with this framework is at an embryonic stage and so, having discussed methodological issues, the paper reports on findings from a longitudinal case study-based research project into the private equity-owned organization Alliance Boots. It demonstrates the applicability of the conceptual approach and hence the presence of practices and virtues even within capitalist business organizations. It makes theoretical advances particularly in the relationship between internal and external goods. It proposes a mapping for virtue in organizations and uses this to conduct an organizational analysis of Alliance Boots and its predecessor organizations. The paper thus makes both theoretical and empirical contributions to our knowledge in the area of applied virtue ethics.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Alliance Boots
  • MacIntyre
  • organizational purpose
  • success-excellence
  • virtue ethics

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Authors

  • Geoff Moore

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