The IV Conference on Ethics, organized by Deusto Business Alumni (DBA) and the Center for Applied Ethics of the University of Deusto (CEA), in collaboration with the BBK Foundation, took place in March under the title “Business Leadership in Post-covid Times”.
During the debate, Prof Adela Cortina (University of Valencia) outlined that in the current context of crisis and uncertainty companies must assume a "social leadership" to generate trust and "social cohesion" in a society damaged by the COVID-19.
She indicated that the company can exercise this leadership by being a "citizen company", which is connected with other companies, politicians, citizens, within the political community". It is the one who tries to be at the service of society.
To get out of the current situation, organizations must contribute with «economic and ethical capital». It is necessary to revise procedures "so that no one is left out" and to educate in digital skills in order to diversify the economy to face future threats. At a time of global bilateralism, the European Union should, in her view, opt for digitisation and, in particular, Artificial Intelligence, combining "security and freedom from the start".
While closing the event, the Director of DEUSTO Center for Applied Ethics, Javier Martínez Contreras, said that the company is well placed to contribute to the common good because "it is a relational node" bringing together very different agents. Companies can do so, Mr Marinez added, by taking positions on issues such as human rights and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
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