Ethics in the workplace

UNSW Canberra Academics Involved: 
Dr Ned Dobos

Ethicist Dr Ned Dobos asks the big questions.

“I'm involved in figuring out what is right and wrong, just and unjust, fair and unfair, and applying these principles to real-life contexts and scenarios,” he says.

Within Applied Ethics there are many specialist areas, such as criminal justice ethics, biomedical ethics and sports ethics. Dobos focuses on military and business ethics.

“One strand of military ethics is concerned with how soldiers ought to conduct themselves once hostilities are underway,” he says. “I'm more interested in what justifies recourse to war in the first place, and whether the very existence of the military establishment is justified.”

“Regarding business, I’m looking at ethics in employment and workplace relations. What are the moral obligations employers owe to employees, and vice versa?”

A scholarly journal article by Dobos on the ethics of networking recently caused a stir in the media, with stories about it ending up in various Fairfax newspapers and numerous other publications and websites.

This research, Dobos says, is targeting not only academics but also employers and job seekers. To reach this audience he uploads scholarly papers to the Social Science Research Network and, where members of the public can see the work for free. He has recorded podcasts and been interviewed on ABC Radio. He’s also an associate director of the International Society for Military Ethics, Asia Pacific Chapter.