What Have We Learned About Business and Ethics from the Pandemic Discussion Series: Part One

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In this episode of the Work in Progress podcast, host Christopher Michaelson is joined by Alison Taylor and Ed Freeman to discuss profit and price-gouging during the pandemic and to what extent the cost of doing business has been externalized onto stakeholders.

Alison Taylor is the Executive Director of Ethical Systems. She has spent the last two decades consulting to multinational companies on risk, anti-corruption, sustainability, human rights, culture and behavior, stakeholder engagement, ESG, and ethics and compliance. She is also a senior advisor at sustainability non-profit Business for Social Responsibility, a board member of ESG think tank Preventable Surprises, and an Adjunct Professor at NYU Stern School of Business, where she teaches professional responsibility, leadership and sustainability to MBAs and undergraduates. Prior to joining Ethical Systems, Taylor was a managing director at Business for Social Responsibility, running the sustainability management, futures, and supply chain practices. She’s also worked at Transparency International, Control Risks, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Fordham Law School. She is a 2019-2022 member of the World Economic Forum Global Future Council on Transparency and Anti-Corruption. Taylor currently writing a book for Harvard Business Review Press on how companies can do the right thing in a turbulent world.

Ed Freeman is University Professor and Olsson Professor of Business Administration, and an academic director of the Institute for Business in Society at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business. Freeman is the co-author of The Power of And: Responsible Business Without Tradeoffs (Columbia University Press, 2020); Models of Leadership in Plato and Beyond(Oxford University Press, 2021); Stakeholder Theory: The State of the Art (Cambridge, 2010); and Managing for Stakeholders (Yale, 2007). He is the author or editor of over 100 volumes and 200 articles in the areas of stakeholder management, business strategy and business ethics. Freeman is perhaps best known for his award winning book: Strategic Management: A Stakeholder Approach (Cambridge, 2010), originally published in 1984, in which he traced the origins of the stakeholder idea to a number of others and suggested that businesses build their strategy around their relationships with key stakeholders.