Module 2

Throughout this module, we will introduce some basic terms and concepts within ethics and the applied branch of ethics known as environmental ethics. As we are examining the intersection of capitalism and environmentalism, we will also survey business ethics.


Warm-Up Exercise: Freddie & the Bunnies

To get you thinking about normative ethics, let's work on a moral scenario. Note that there are multiple solutions (depending upon how your frame ethics. The key take-away here is not the search for a singular or objective answer but a critical reflection on how well you have articulated your position AND you have supported your reasoning!


What are some of the competing perspectives as reflected in the moral scenario above?

How might businesses use these same perspectives?

What is your perspective?


Interaction: Big Ag

Argument Against:

Argument For:

Huffington Post: Saying ‘Not Really’ to Chipotle’s ‘No’ to GMOs Potential Discussion Prompts:
  • Pick one normative theory we have discussed and discuss the moral permissibility of engineering food.
  • Do the health risks reported from GMOs outweigh the human need? Which normative theory are you employing to make sense of the issue?
  • Which threat should be given priority: the threat to the environment as posed through current Big Ag practices or the threat to the human population as posed through current Big Ag practices?