International.color

International.color - Theclothingindustryisperhapsthemost

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The clothing industry is perhaps the most  competitive in the world. It has been the first  level of industrialization in most countries,  including the sweatshop phase. Harwell and Jones (H-J) has only 1.5% Levi  Strauss’s market share. It owns a plant in  country X, employing young women at  $.80/day in a clean and safe factory. The  young women say they prefer the work to  village life. H-J employs no children under 14.
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Hanna has been asked to design and  supervise the installation of some new  equipment in the H-J plant that will  improve the efficiency and safety of the  plant. Nevertheless, some of Hanna’s  engineering colleagues argue that she  should not take the assignment,  because it makes her a party to the  exploitation of the young women.
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Home country - engineers country of origin Host country - country other than thehome  country. Problem: What should be done when home and  host country standards conflict? Lesser industrialized countries (LICs)= countries  of a lower level of industrial development. Problem: What should be done when  technology transfer threatens the traditions and  values of LICs?
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Avoid two extremes in these “boundary-crossing  situations.” Absolutism Home-country values should  always guide. But - Our own values may not apply. May not be possible  to do business with non-corrupt firms. Host-country standards may be as good. (Is  individualism better than group orientation?) i Relativism. (“When in Rome…”) But- May be illegal (FCPA, 1977) M Action may be too immoral (slavery, safety and health standards) s
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Creative Middle Ways (CMWs) C Honors home-country and host-country demands. To  accept CMWs, we must reject: - Moral laxism: apply so loosely that moral  considerations are eliminated. Act in your  self-interest. - Moral rigorism: apply moral principles  strictly in every situation
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Laura’s plant operates in Country X and  produces fertilizer in an area where farmers live  at almost a subsistence level. The plant  produces relatively inexpensive fertilizer that the  local farmers can afford, but it also produces  pollution. However, although it would violate U.S.  standards, the pollution produced does not  violate the standards of Country X. In order to  remedy the pollution problems, the plant would  have to raise the price of the fertilizer so much  that the farmers could not afford it. Laura has  been asked by management to give her advice  as to what the plant should do.
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CMW: Continue to produce the fertilizer at the  cheap price, attempting to find a better solution
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This note was uploaded on 01/03/2011 for the course ENGR 482 taught by Professor Russell during the Fall '08 term at Texas A&M.

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International.color - Theclothingindustryisperhapsthemost

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