Ethics and the Professions – Good Practitioners in a Rising Asia
Friday, October 16, 2015, 12:15pm
S153, 1st Floor, CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge St., Cambridge, MA
Kenneth Winston, Visiting Scholar, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard Kennedy School
Many Asian countries are in transition, as they struggle to meet the demands of a global world. This struggle is not only economic and political; it is moral. Simply put, it is a struggle to preserve what one believes to be of value in one’s own culture or tradition while responding to new circumstances and participating in new relationships. Thus, it often involves a hybrid of traditional beliefs and transplanted values, which makes Asian countries fascinating sites for the study of political and ethical development. In particular, emerging democratic aspirations and increasing commitment to standards of professionalism are constituent elements of the new moral environment in Asia. As a result, the ethical challenges faced by practitioners have a special urgency and demand close attention. This talk presents a general framework for thinking about these challenges, focusing on the kinds of moral competence professionals require in working for the good of others.
Here’s an essay I admire on a related topic, also by Kenneth Winston, included in the book Prospects for the Professions