Ethics in Public Administration: A Philosophical Approach

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 1993 - Political Science - 166 pages
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Ethics in Public Administration provides public administrators with a theoretical knowledge of ethical principles and a practical framework for applying them. Sheeran reviews the place of ethics in philosophy, links it to political and administrative theory and practice, and analyzes the ethical theories and concepts from which ethical principles are derived. Before delving into ethics as part of philosophy, Sheeran provides the reader with a brief overview of philosophy and its principal subjects, including ontology, epistemology, and psychology. He offers several definitions of ethics, and discusses both the objectivist (absolutist) and interpretivist ("situation ethics") perspectives. Sheeran focuses on the subject matter of ethics, human actions, and their morality, exploring Natural Law, man-made law, and conscience as sources for determining the morality of human action. In later chapters, he applies his discussion of ethics to such controversial policy issues as suicide, murder, abortion, sterilization, capital punishment, war, lying, and strikes. Recommended for graduate and upper division undergraduate courses in public administration, public policy, management, and administrative behavior.

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Status of Ethics in Public Administration
Philosophy and Ontology as the Foundation for Ethics
Epistemology and Psychology as Roots of Ethics
The Focus of Ethics Is Human Action
The Morality of Human Action
Laws Rules Regulations and Conscience as Sources of Ethical Guidance
Special Ethics
Human Rights and DutiesDuties to Ourselves
Duties to Other Human Beings
Our Right to Private Property
Social EthicsOur Rights and Duties as Members of Society
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About the author (1993)

PATRICK J. SHEERAN holds a Doctorate in Public Administration, a Masters in International Relations from the University of Southern California. Sheeran is a former Catholic priest, and has taught various graduate courses in public administration, including ethics, at the University of Southern California, George Mason, and Shenandoah Universities. He is the author of Women, Society, the State and Abortion: A Structuralist Analysis (Praeger, 1987).

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