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Sustainability 2017, 9(9), 1641; doi:10.3390/su9091641

Moral Education for Sustainable Development: Exploring Morally Challenging Business Situations within the Global Supply Chain Context

1
Textile and Apparel Management, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
2
Textile, Merchandising, and Interiors, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA
3
Textiles, Merchandising and Fashion Design, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
4
School of Human Sciences, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS 39762, USA
5
Consumer, Apparel and Retail Studies, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC 27402, USA
6
Apparel, Textiles, and Interior Design, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506, USA
7
Apparel, Events, and Hospitality Management, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
8
Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 July 2017 / Revised: 25 August 2017 / Accepted: 11 September 2017 / Published: 15 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Adult and Community Education for Sustainability)
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Abstract

This study presents the need for moral development education of current and future professionals so they can help build sustainable companies and global supply chains. Grounded in Ha-Brookshire’s moral responsibility theory of corporate sustainability, the authors explored a set of real-life business situations where business professionals experienced morally challenging dilemmas. The study was conducted within the context of the textile and apparel (TA) industry because of the global and fragmented supply chain nature of the industry. The real-life business situations were interpreted using Kohlberg’s moral development stage theory. The results of in-depth individual interviews followed by three focus groups of industry professionals in spring 2017 showed that participants have experienced a variety of morally challenging business situations throughout their careers. This includes simple problems at the individual and firm levels, as well as wicked and complex problems at the industry and global levels. The study concludes that for TA businesses to be truly sustainable, professionals’ moral ability is critical and, therefore, appropriate moral development education is necessary. View Full-Text
Keywords: moral development; moral education; corporate sustainability; business situations moral development; moral education; corporate sustainability; business situations
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ha-Brookshire, J.; McAndrews, L.; Kim, J.; Freeman, C., Jr.; Jin, B.; Norum, P.; LeHew, M.L.A.; Karpova, E.; Hassall, L.; Marcketti, S. Moral Education for Sustainable Development: Exploring Morally Challenging Business Situations within the Global Supply Chain Context. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1641.

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