Contest: Critical Thinking and Business Ethics

Power of Critical Thinking, 2nd Canadian EditionCritical thinking is essential to the study of business ethics. In its simplest form, critical thinking just means subjecting our own beliefs, and other people’s beliefs, to critical scrutiny, to figure out which beliefs are well-founded and which are not, in order to try to establish which beliefs are worth retaining and which aren’t. It’s about making sure that our beliefs are grounded not just in knee-jerk reactions and prejudices, but in solid arguments. That, basically, is the kind of thinking that I aim to apply to ethical issues in commerce, in this blog.

So, I’m hereby announcing a new contest. All you have to do to win is to author one of the 3 best comments posted on this blog during the month of September (starting today, September 8). The comments should be insightful, on-topic, and of course original. Only comments posted on blog entries that were themselves originally posted during September 2010 will be eligible (i.e., no comments on items I posted in months past).

The prizes: authors of the 3 best comments will each receive a copy of my textbook, “The Power of Critical Thinking.”

I’ll be the sole judge, and my decision shall be final. Should the winner(s) wish to decline the prize, I will donate a copy of the book, in their name, to a library or coffee-shop bookshelf.

The book prizes are courtesy of Oxford University Press Canada.

Addendum: it should go without saying, but a comment doesn’t have to agree with my own point of view in order to count as a good comment in my eyes. Comments that get me to change my mind about something are best of all!

5 comments so far

  1. Jeff Moriarty on

    The logic of the free market is inescapable!

    • Chris MacDonald on

      But is the freedom of the logic market equally so? 😉

      • Jeff Moriarty on


  2. Carol Sanford on

    Absolutely. And to engage in critical thinking you have to be able to understand how you are thinking.Most people cannot see their own thinking process, so they do “thoughting” recycling their existing biases and assumptions. I have found working with regenerative systems frameworks, those that expand and extend the arenas a team or individual use, are a powerful means for this. I also think you have to added personal development. Even when people have great critical thinking skills (which is rare given our education system) they have to manage their own state and emotional being to engage these skills. Both are capabilities that to be developed over time in real life settings.

    The key is to see it as a capability and to build it. Most people want to ‘hire it’ which is possible, but there is not enough to go around. In South Africa we build it in business settings so that workers could transfer its use into the Governing Councils in Townships. It created an amazing amount of motivation because they knew they had to think better to lead and to govern.That was a ethical or responsibility pull Without some similar motivation, it becomes too academic in most cases. And there are few who understand its importance or have a technology or methodology to achieve it.

    I am interested in doing a book review on my blog on your book. Your post resonates with me. I have small parts of this conversation in my new book (Beyond Corporate Responsibility-may change). And why it is critical to creating The Responsible Business.

    Great challenge. I want to do a Q&A via email to go with my blog post book review. Are you up for that? I would create a parallel post on the day before to build a collaboration around this idea. Thanks for starting it.

    • Chris MacDonald on


      Thanks for your comment.
      We can chat by email ( about the Q&A, etc.


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