Ethics and governance - Essay Example

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Ethics and governance

This left Texas City quite vulnerable to a catastrophe. The decision by the key actors in this BP’s case was founded on the need to ensure that the issue of non-compliance to public safety and health issues by oil companies was addressed. According to Campbell and Tom (2005, p. 551); Davies (2006, p. 106-120) corporations which do not subscribe to the appropriate business ethics do so because they have egoistic inclinations. It is imperative to note that failure to uphold ethics also amounts to lack of effective governance within the affected corporations. Ethics and governance issues in corporations lay the foundation upon which virtues within firms are laid.
The action by the Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) to investigate BP was to audit its safety standards. Hence, this decision was based on the oil fire incident at BP which killed fifteen of its workers and injured a hundred and seventy others. However, the company had ignored this issue for a long time. The report notes that this company was plagued by years of cost cutting which in turn increased its vulnerability to this catastrophe in its refinery in Texas. According to Mortishead, (2005, p. 8); Davies (2006, pp 106-120) the decisions of BP through its management and workers of the company were based on the need to improve its image in the oil industry.
From the BP’s case, there are a range of possible consequences based on the report findings. These consequences were changes triggered by the findings in the report. One such consequence is the improvement in the compliance to safety standards by BP and other companies as well. According to Stocker (2005, p. 453-66), in so doing, these oil firms would have to embrace the canons of ethics and governance. In this regard, they shall have to implement fundamental organisational changes to ensure they are virtuous. The other actual consequence is the loss of market leadership position by BP to ...Show more


The management of BP can be praised for establishing and maintaining a culture of personal safety which was geared towards ensuring that workers were more aware of their personal safety. Workers were informed on rules and mechanisms to follow in order to avoid causing accidents…
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