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Business Ethics

Background: How Intel Eliminated War From Its Supply Chain

In recent years, technology giant Intel has worked hard to ensure the semiconductor metals it obtains from mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo benefit actual miners rather than the warlords that wage bloody civil conflicts in the country, as was once the case. With these efforts, Intel is attempting to maintain ethical business practices.

Business ethics or "corporate social responsibility" is a topic that fascinates me (I even did my senior thesis on it in college), but I've had few opportunities to reflect on it with other Christians. What moral obligations do we, as Christians, think the corporate world has?

Some think that companies do good just by doing business--creating jobs and strengthening economies. For example, even if Intel took no interest in their suppliers' wellbeing, their dealings with the Congo have brought much needed commerce to an impoverished nation.

Others feel that businesses should only refrain from doing anything unethical or anything that brings unethical results. Intel has done this by working to stop funding warlords.

One final opinion is that companies should practice intentional giving with the communities and countries from which they profit.

As individual Christians, we understand God's directions on stewardship and cheerful giving, but how, if at all, does that relate to the business world? I'd love to hear some thoughts on this.
... and yet Intel (who I have worked for in the past) is a major contributor to LGBT organizations,
and has even asked for a ban on the Boy Scouts when they were opposing it.

I think few companies really have a Christian/Biblical understanding of ethics.

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