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The three teleological frameworks and the three deontological frameworks Essay

List and discuss in depth the three teleological frameworks and the three deontological frameworks. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each? Of these six frameworks, with which one do you most associate?

Teleological frameworks focus in the results of the conduct of the individual is favorable or not. The three teleological frameworks are ethical egoism, utilitarianism, Sidgwick’s dualism.

“Ethical egoism is based on the belief that every individual should act in a way to promote himself or herself if the net result will generate, on balance, positive rather than negative results” (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, p. 4). This framework permits self-interest to play a role in the action of the person only if those actions should also have positive benefits to others. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009). There are controversial opinions about this framework because different interpretations of what is considered on balance. Supporters of ethical egoism argue that his framework is the only ethical framework that motivates individual and is a “win-win” proposition. The individual reward him or her self-interest while also yielding benefits for others. Opponents of this framework state that part of the connection of the actions that motivate a person also requires certain obligations of him an individual. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009).

The second teleological framework is utilitarianism which “is based on the principle that each person’s actions add to the overall utility of the community impacted by those actions” (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, p. 5). This frameworks focus on the net results of their actions instead of the means or motives that generated the reason for those actions. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009). Also this framework causes in favor and oppose opinions. People who support utilitarianism states that captures the essence of benevolent behavior would not do actions that help others if that action doesn’t benefits the self-interest of the individuals. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009). People who oppose it state that it is practically impossible to what would be the greatest good for the greatest number, which raise the question if the minority would be treated unfairly. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009).

The third is Sidgwick’s Dualism. This framework was an attempt to bridge the gap between the two competing ethical frameworks of ethical egoism and utilitarianism by Henry Sidgwick. The core of his argument was that both theories had elements of using cost-benefits analysis to help analyze the actions of the individual. Sidgwick called rational benevolent that stated that the utilitarianism is the foundation component in any ethical framework and prudence was called that the self-interest of ethical egoism must be included in the ethical framework. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009).

He stated that a harmony can exist among both points of view, prudence, and rational benevolent by having a rational ethical model and his conclusion expressed in Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, was “that there had to be some reconciliation between them to explain how individuals act in their own self-interest as well as in those interests of other” (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, p. 6). One of the advantages of these teleological frameworks is that decisions can be used to present different arguments from a business perspective.

When this framework judges the consequences of the act rather than the act itself even if the act itself is questionable for some people and that can be a disadvantage. Deontological frameworks focus on the duty or obligation in determining whether the actions are right or wrong, as opposed to teleological framework that focus on whether the results are favorable or not. Deontological is derived from the Greek word deon means duty. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009). The three deontological frameworks are existentialism, contractarianism, and Kant’s ethics.

“Existentialism is based on the underlying belief that the only person who can determine right and wrong is the person making the decisions. As a results, each individual determines his or her own actions and is ultimately responsible for the consequences of those actions” (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, p. 6).

Contractarianism is based on the belief that individuals agree to social contacts to be members within the society and holds the view that membership in society comes with duties and responsibilities. This theory is based on the works of John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Garrett Hardin, and John Rawls. “Rawls argues that everyone should have equal rights and duties” (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009, p. 7). Also he stated that social and economic inequalities are acceptable to the society only if these inequalities generate benefits for everyone.

Kant’s Ethics are based in the book of Immanuel Kant, Foundations of Metaphysics of Morals (1785), where he discussed ethical decisions based on the free will when an individual should act in a way in which one would expect everyone to act. His point of view is considered a dualism because it attempted to bridge the gap between the existentialism and contractarian point of view. (Stanwick & Stanwick, 2009). One advantages of this framework is that the judgment lies in the beginning of the decision process no matter what the consequences are. However, if the actions are considered well at the beginning and at the end the result have bad consequence this can be seen as a disadvantage because the consequences are not considered.

I am most associate with teleological ethics because it’s a system judged by individual circumstances rather that the person who make the decision. I make decision based on what is generally se as good by the society and my beliefs. This framework offers an opportunity to understand that life does happen and cannot be judged by rules.


Stanwick, P. A., & Stanwick, S. D. (2009). Understanding business ethics. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson-Prentice Hall

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