University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Ethical Issues in the Regulation of Business

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Moral Theology

DESCRIPTION This study-unit will examine in detail the relationship between law and ethics with special attention being granted to the concept and moral dimension of regulation and the moral and legal role of regulators. Issues to be highlighted in this course include the protection of the vulnerable and disadvantaged, the ethical obligation of competence, consumer legislation, corporate and financial legislation and practice, whistle-blowing and the moral dilemma of mixed loyalties and conflicts of interest.

This study unit will consist partly of lectures and partly of regular course work which will be assigned to students during the course. Typical course work would include be preparing brief presentations on a pre-agreed topic. Students will accordingly be involved in the learning processes as direct protagonists.

Study-unit Aims

- To analyze the relationship between law and ethics and to develop sensitivity to the ethical dimension of business activity
- To better understand the role of regulators and the various moral risks involved in regulated, self-regulated and non-regulated business activities
- To consider various case studies on business behaviour and evaluate the moral implications

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge & Understanding: By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- assess and address the moral dimension of business and the ethical challenges that such activities have presented in the past and will continue to present in the future
- understand the inter-playing roles of law, regulation, ethics and business.

2. Skills: By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- assess and anticipate the practical impact and significance of the need for moral vigilance in business operations and corporate governance in day to day experience.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings


- Ross Cranston, Regulating Business: Law and Consumer Agencies, Oxford Socio-Legal Studies, 1979
- George Gillingan, Regulating the Financial Services Sector, Kluwer Law International, 1999
- Stanley Adams, ROCHE versus ADAMS, Jonathan Cape, 1984
- David Lewis (Ed), Whistleblowing at Work, The Athlone Press, 2001
- Cicero, Selected Works, trans. Grant M Penguin, (1960) (especially chapter 4)
- Valance E., “Business Ethics at Work”, Cambridge, 1995

Papers and articles

- David Fabri, "No more heroes any more? The Whistleblowing Dilemma: Recent Developments and a fresh look at some conceptual issues", Id-Dritt, Vol XX, Law Students' Society, University of Malta, 2009

- David Fabri, "My Brother’s Keeper - The Genesis and Ethical Basis of Consumer Law (Notes from a Maltese Perspective)”, Civil Society Project Report 2007, in European Documentation and Research Centre, Peter G Xuereb (ed), University of Malta

- Handouts and other relevant materials and will be circulated during the study-unit

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-requisite qualifications: A good undergraduate degree or equivalent

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Independent Study

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Presentation Yes 40%
Assignment Yes 60%

LECTURER/S David Fabri

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
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21st Annual Augustinian Lecture 2017
The 21st Annual Augustinian Lecture 2017 will be celebrated on the 5th and 6th December 2017 with two lectures delivered by Rev. Prof. Theodore Dieter.

Closing Date Dissertation Proposals
Deadline to present dissertation proposals for next Faculty Board is Wednesday 29th November 2017 at 1700hrs

Augustinian Institute Academic Year 2017-18

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