Morality, Ethics & Character Education
- South African resources on business ethics
- Understanding business ethics:
- Proposing Cardinal Virtues by James Keenan
- An excellent video introducing the concept of character from a positive psychology perspective by the Values in Action Institute
- Smart & Good High Schools: Integrating Excellence and Ethics for Success in School, Work, and Beyond
- Measurement tools in character education
James Keenan argues that we need to understand contemporary cardinal virtues within the ways we act and relate to others and ourselves, generally, specifically and uniquely in macro, meso and micro ecology. We need a cardinal virtue at each level to live well. Justice is the virtue that guides our relations at the general level in the broader community and society, fidelity guides us in our relations with those closest to us and self-care guides us in how we relate to ourselves. These are held and managed together by wisdom. This is represented in the following graphic:
- The wheel of life is a very helpful tool to assess your level of satisfaction in different areas of your life, providing an indication for goal setting.
- Portfolio living – a new of thinking about learning, working and leisure
We have opportunities to develop lifestyles in retirement unknown and beyond belief to those living in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Over the whole 20th century life expectancy increased by 30 years. The whole concept of retirement is only just over 100 years old. In the pre-pension era people died largely when still working. Then in the 20th century a way of living developed that we like to call the 3 boxes of life. School was the first one and that was where you supposedly learned everything you would need in life. Then you moved to work – a job, any job and if you were lucky you liked your work. Then finally retirement – which usually was not very long and was associated primarily with leisure. A few years respite from a hard grind at work!
Now of course learning is crucial throughout life and we would argue needs to continue into retirement. Work is also something that people are starting to continue to do for many more years and many actually look for work that they love. And then finally retirement – a term that increasingly ceases to make sense. It is now an opportunity for combining some paid and unpaid work and everything else that our programme deals with. Our younger generations are already experimenting with ‘retiring’ from paid work at different points in their lives so that increasingly those 3 boxes are looking more like an overlapping sponge cake with those 3 ingredients – learning, work and leisure overlapping throughout the life cycle.
- Personal values exercise – an essential step in growing in your understanding of who you are, what is important to you and how well this is aligned with universal values and principles.