Studiengang Data Science and Business Analytics

Modul 4: Ethics & Law

Seminar Business Ethics

Sommersemester 2017


Dozent: Prof. em. Dr. Rafael Capurro

Zeit: 01/02.06.2017

Ort:: KIT - ITAS, Karlsruhe, Karlstrasse 11, Raum 216
(Prof. Dr. Klaus Wiegerling, KIT - ITAS)


Sanna Herzog, Kevin Hendel, Markus Fries, Anna Aldushyna, Holger Büch,
Marcus Fixel, Meng Li, Stephan Pradel,Simon Tschütz


Modulziele und Lehrergebnisse

Anhand von Beispielen aus der Automobilindustrie erörtern wir gelingende und misslingende Formen des ökonomischen Handelns im digitalen Zeitalter aus der Perspektive von Integrität und Big Data

Nach erfolgreichem Besuch des Moduls verfügen die Studierenden über ein fundiertes Wissen in dem Bereich Unternehmensethik im Kontext der Analyse von Daten in Unternehmen und den dort vorzufindenden Entscheidungssituationen für die Entwicklung neuer Geschäftsmodelle.

Im Einzelnen verfügen die Studierenden über Kenntnisse und Fähigkeiten, Ursache- und Wirkungszusammenhänge sowie Analysen aus einer ethischen Perspektive zu durchleuchten und bevorstehende Entscheidungen in einem ethischen Kontext zu betrachten.

Darüber hinaus wird den Studierenden das theoretische Rüstzeug vermittelt, die ethische Dimension bei der Analyse von Daten in Unternehmen zu beschreiben, zu erklären sowie Empfehlungen für das ethisch korrekte Entscheiden und Verhalten auszusprechen.

Zur Einstimmung

Harvard Business School:

  • Video: Perspectives on the Case Method
  • Video: Into the Field

Working Knowledge: Sharpening your Skills: 10 Harvard Business School Research Stories that Will Make Your Mouth Water (31 May 2017)

Duff McDonald  The Golden Passport. Harvard Business School, the Limits of Capitalism, and the Moral Failure of the MBA Elite. New York 2017, p. 429-432:

"What do we mean when we talk about business ethics? The most obvious category includes the prohibitions, those things one shouldn't do. That naturally includes everything that's illegal, whether it's fraud, bribery, price-fixing, employee discrimination, or collusion. But it also includes the grey areas of misleading accounting, insufficient corporate disclosure, or deceptive sales tactics. A second category includes the proactive aspects of ethical leadership, things that we should do. That includes honesty and integrity in internal communications, equitable resolution of conflict and maintaining acceptable levels of workplace safety. A third and the largest – category includes the debatable issues. What is an equitable distribution of wealth? How much should a CEO be paid? What is an acceptable reason for layoffs? What responsibilities does an organization have to the communities in which it operates? And then there's the topic of managerial authority itself. While it does seem necessary imagine a business in which every single decision went to a vote – it's also necessary to remember that positions of corporate authority do not, in and of themselves, signal anything about one's essential goodness.
When we talk about business ethics, in other words, we are pretty much talking about everything that business
and managers – do. The teaching challenge is complicated even further by the fact that, like the edge of a knife, business ethics are usually only appreciated when they are not there. However, if you're going  to go for looking for their absence, the most likely place to find it is at the intersection of profit maximization and sound judgement. Because everything gets a little trickier when there's lots of money involved. Which brings us to the story of John Shad ('49). [...]
Shad had made a fortune on WallStreeet, and the question of whether he would give back to the School was never in doubt. A to how he would give back, his experience at the SEC clearly played a defining role. In March 1987, Dean John McArthuor announced that Shad had pledged $ 30 million to HBS
at that point, the largest gift in the School's history – to endow a programe in Business Leadership and Ethics. "I've been very disturbed most recently with the large numbers of graduates of leading business and law schools who have become convicted felons," Shad told the New York Times.
While few thought that an increased focus on ethics would be detrimental to an MBA's education, there was some sniping nonetheless. BusinessWeek wondered whether this was "a case of throwing money at a problem that money helped produce." And a junior faculty member at HBS was quite skeptical: "They still have to sell this one to one hundred tenured faculty who think that the whole discipline is garbage."
In July, Shad wrote an opinion piece for the New York Times, "Business's Bottom Line: Ethics." While on the whole a cogently argued and persuasive piece, it did contain a few interesting remarks, such as this totally unsupported (and completely absurd) suggestion: "Wall Street has long been criticized for ethical lapses, but Wall Street's ethics compare favorably with those of other professions." And then these three ideas, presented in sequence: "As demonstrated by most successful individuals and companies, the market-place rewards quality, integrity and ethical conduct. ... While integrity and ethical conduct are their own rewards, they also make good business sense. ... In sum, ethics pays: It's smart to be ethical."
That's hardly a controversial statement, and it's difficult to criticize the intention behind it. But it also contained a tacit ordering of values that seemed out of whack. "Shad and the business school ethicists who repeat this dictum over and over seem unaware that mere expediency is perhaps the shallowest foundation for an ethical system," writes John Trumbour in How Harvard Rules: Reason in the Service of Empire. Not only that, but by placing profit above ethics in his hierarchy, Shad left open the door that if and when acting unethically could be shown to pay even more, the logic would compel you to do so."

Erster Tag

Was heißt Integrität in bezug auf jeweils ein Produkt, eine Firma, ein Menschenleben?
Wie hängen soziale Regeln mit Regeln der Herstellung von Produkten zusammen?
Wie hängen Gesetze und integres Handeln im Unternehmen / eines Unternehmens zusammen?
Welche fairen und unfairen Formen des Zulassens und Wegsehens von Fehlern spielen eine Hauptrolle im Unternehmen?

Zweiter Tag

Wie hängen Integrität und Compliance in bezug auf das unternehmerische Handeln zusammen?
Wie stellen sich Fragen der Eigenverantwortung und Unternehmensverantwortung in bezug auf die Digitalisierung (Big Data) dar?
Nach welchen Kriterien sind gelingende und misslingende Formen von Transparenz und Opazität im Unternehmen sowie des Unternehmens mit der Gesellschaft zu beurteilen?


Buchmann, J. (Hrsg.): Internet Privacy - Eine interdisziplinäre Betandsaufnahme (Kap. 2 und 3)  Berlin: Acatech 2012.

Capurro, Rafael: Homo Digitalis. Beiträge zur Ontologie, Anthropologie und Ethik der digitalen Technik. Heidelberg: Springer VS 2017.
Capurro, Rafael: Zwischen Himmel und Hölle. In: Agora42. Das philosophische Wirtschaftsmagazin. Ausgabe 02/2017, 40-50
Capurro, Rafael: The Quest for Roboethics: Interview with Yue-Hsuan Weng

Capurro, Rafael - Verband der Automobilindustrie (VDA):

Capurro, Rafael: Digitization as an ethical challenge. In: AI & Society 2017 (Deutsch)
Capurro, Rafael: Living with online robots 2017
Capurro, Rafael: Jenseits der Infosphäre 2017
Capurro, Rafael:  Fahrer entlasten, nicht ersetzen.  In: Flotten management 1/ 2017, Februar/März, 76-77 (pdf)
Capurro, Rafael: An Appraisal of Nissenbaums Privacy in Context (2012), Chapter 2.4.7
Capurro, Rafael: Go Glocal. Intercultural Comparison of Leadership Ethics (2004)
Capurro, Rafael: Kontrolle ist gut, Vertrauen ist besser. Zum Begründungsverhältnis zwischen Moral und Ökonomie (2004)
Capurro, Rafael: Digitale Weltvernetzung und Kapital - Geld und Gier (1999)
Capurro, Rafael; Eldred, Michael; Nagel, Daniel: Digital Whoness: Identity, Privacy and Freedom in the Cyberworld. Berlin: de Gruyter 2013.

Cox, Damian, La Caze, Marguerite and Levine, Michael: Integrity, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2017 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.)

DAIMLER: Kultur der Integrität
DAIMLER: Compliance im Überblick

Grimm, Petra & Capurro, Rafael: Unternehmensethik in der Diskussion (2007)

McDonald, Duff: The Golden Passport. Harvard Business School, the Limits of Capitalism, and the Moral Failure of the MBA Elite. New York 2017 

Nerurkar, Michael; Wadepuhl, Christian; Wiegerling, Klaus (Guest Editors): Ethics of Big Data. International Review of Information Ethics (IRIE), Vol. 24, May 2016.

Introduction by Michael Nerurkar, Christian Wadepuhl, and Klaus Wiegerling

Nissenbaum, Helen: Privacy in Context. Technology, Policy, and the Integrity of Social Life. Stanford 2010. Siehe  auch: ders. A Contextual Approach  to Privacy Online (2011)

Spinosa, Charles; Flores, Fernando, Dreyfus, Hubert L.: Disclosing New Worlds. Entrepreneurship, Democratic Action and the Cultivation of Solidarity. MIT 1997


Integrity: Wort- und Begriffsgeschichte

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2017 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.):
Cox, Damian, La Caze, Marguerite and Levine, Michael: Integrity,

"When used as a virtue term, 'integrity' refers to a quality of a person's character; however, there are other uses of the term. One may speak of the integrity of a wilderness region or an ecosystem, a computerized database, a defense system, a work of art, and so on. When it is applied to objects, integrity refers to the wholeness, intactness or purity of a thing – meanings that are sometimes carried over when it is applied to people. A wilderness region has integrity when it has not been corrupted by development or by the side-effects of development, when it remains intact as wilderness. A database maintains its integrity as long as it remains uncorrupted by error; a defense system as long as not breached. A musical work might be said to have integrity when its musical structure has a certain completeness that is not intruded by uncoordinated, unrelated usical ideas; that is, when it possesses a kind of musical wholeness, intactness and purity.
Integiry is also attributed to various parts or aspects of a person's life. We speak of attributes such as professional, intellectual and artistic integrity. However, the most philosophically important sense of the term 'integrity' relates to general character. Philosophers have been particularly concerned to understand wht it is for a person to exhibit integrity throughout life. What is it to be a person of integrity? Ordinary discourse about integrity involves two fundamental intuitions: first, that integrity is primarily a formal relation one has to oneself, or between parts or aspects of one's self; and second, that integrity is connected in an important way of acting morally, in other words, there are some substantive or normative constraints on what it is to act with integrity. [...]
Any attempt to strive for integrity has to take into account of the effect of social and political context. the kind of society which is likely to be more conductive to integrity is one which enables people to develop and make use of their capacity for critical reflection, one which does not force people to take up particular roles because of their sex or race or any other reason, and one which does not encourage individuals to betray each other, either to escape prison or to advance their career. Societies and political structures can be both inimical and favorable to the development of integrity, sometimes both at once."

Oxford English Dictionarry, 2nd. Ed. 1989

integrity [ad L. integritas wholeness, entireness, completeness, integrity, chastity, purity, f. integer, integr- whole, INTEGER. Perh. in part a. F. integrité (c1410 in Hatz.-Darm.)]
1. The condition of having no part or element taken away or wanting; undivided or unbroken state; material wholeness, completeness, entirety. [...]
2. The condition of not being marred or violated; unimpaired or uncorrupted condition; original perfect state; soundness. [...]
3. In moral sensse. a. Unimpaired moral state; freedom from moral corruption; innocense, sinlessness. [...] b. Soundness of moral principle; the character of uncorrupted virtue, esp. in relation to truth and fair dealing; uprightness, honesty, sincerity.

Thesaurus Linguae Latinae

integer, -gra, -grum [ab in- privativo et *tag-ro-s adi. (ad tango) [...]
I negatur actus tangendi [...]
II negatur status tangendo effectus [...]
III structurae (ad I et II) [...]
IV locut. plus minus adverbiales: A ad indicandam restitutionem in statum pristinum [...]

, -onis f.ab integrare. Gloss. 'epanálepsis', 'holoklería'. renovation, restauratio, repetitio [...]

, -atis f. ab integer [...]
I pertinet (magis) ad qualitatem incolumem [...]
A de statu non laeso, non corrupto, non debili [...]
1 animantium:
spectat ad corpus (hic illic de -e naturali in universum, maxime tamen pressius de statu aut non mutilato [...]
b spectat ad intellectum, animi habitum [..]
c spectat ad virtutes, mores, affectus
α in universum
β de statu indemni, innocenti
γ de statu casto, pudico
δ i.q. 'akribeia'
ε stilistica et grammatica

2 rerum:[...]
a corporalium [...]
b incorporalium [...]
B de statu non diviso  [...]

pertinet (magis) ad quantitatem plenam [...]
A de ambitu, amplitudine, spatio [...]
1 corporaliter [...]
2 incorporaliter [...]
B de numero [...]

Walther  v. Wartburg: Französisches Etymologisches Wörterbuch (Basel 1947)

integer unversehrt
b. Nfr. intégral (calcul) par le lequel on remonte des infiniment petits à la quantité dont ils dérivent" (seit 1696, Hospital Préface) [...]
Zu integer hat das mlt. ein adj. integralis gebildet. Dieses ist durch Oresme und später wiederholt ins fr. übernommen worden (II 1). Gegenüber der allgemeinen bed. (a)  ist die mathematische bed. (b) im Zusammenhang mit integrare II 1 c entstanden. [...]

Robert Estienne: Thesaurus Linguae Latinae (Paris 1531)

Integritas - atis f ['holotes', 'akeraiotes'] Innocentia.[...]

LSJ - The Online Liddell-Scott-Jones Greek-English Lexicon

ὁλό-της, ητος, ἡ, (ὅλος) wholeness, entireness, Arist. Metaph. 1023b36

Aristoteles: Metaphysik, V. 1023 (Übers. H. Bonitz, Hamburg 1994)

Original: Aristotle. Aristotle's Metaphysics, ed. W.D. Ross. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1924.

25. Teil (méros)

(1.) Teil heißt in einer Bedeutung dasjenige, in welches das Quantitative irgendwie geteilt werden (diahiresthai) kann; denn was vom Quantitativen als solchem genommen wird, heißt immer Teil desselben;  von der Zahl Drei z.B. heißt in gewissem Sinne Zwei ein Teil. In einem anderen Sinne heißt unter diesem nur dasjenige  Teil, welches das Quantitative mißt; daher heißt in dem einen Sinne zwei Teil von drei, in dem andern nicht.
(2.) Ferner heißt auch das, worin abgesehen von der Quantität der Formbegriff (eidos) zerlegt werden kann, Teil desselben; deshalb nennt man die Arten (eide) Teile des Geschlechts (genos).
(3.) Ferner heißt dasjenige, worin das Ganze, sowohl der Formbegriff wie das, was die Form an sich hat, zerlegt wird oder woraus es  zusammengesetzt ist, Teil derselben; von der ehernen Kugel z.B. oder dem ehernen Würfel ist sowohl das Erz ein Teil (dies ist nämlich der Stoff, an welchem sich die Form befindet), wie auch andererseits der Winkel ein Teil ist.
(4.) Ferner heißt auch das, was sich in dem erklärenden Begriff eines jeden Dinges findet, Teil des Ganzen; darum nennt man auch das Geschlecht Teil der Art in anderem Sinne, als die Art Teil des Geschlechts ist.

26. Ganzes (holon)

(1) Ein Ganzes (holon) nennt man dasjenige, welchem keiner der Teile (meros) fehlt, aus welchen bestehend es als Ganzes von Natur bezeichnet wird
(2) und dasjenige, was das Umfaßte so umfaßt, daß aus jenem eine Einheit (hen) wird.
Dies geschieht auf zwiefache Weise, entweder so,
(a) daß jedes Einzelne ein Eins ist, oder
(b) daß aus ihnen das Eins wird.

(a)  Was nämlich allgemein und vom Ganzen ausgesagt wird, als sei es ein Ganzes, das ist ein Ganzes (katholou) in dem Sinne, daß es vieles insofern umfaßt, als es von jedem einzelnen ausgesagt wird, und alle jene einzeln genommen eins sind, z.B. Mensch, Pferd, Gott, weil alle lebende Wesen sind.
(b) In der anderen Weise dagegen ist Ganzes das Zusammenhängende (synechés) und Begrenzte, wenn aus mehreren immanenten Teilen eine Einheit geworden ist, besonders, wenn die Teile nur dem Vermögen nach existieren, doch auch, wenn der Wirklichkeit nach.
Unter diesen selbst aber gebraucht man mehr von dem, was von Natur (physei) als was durch Kunst (téchne) ein Ganzes (henos) ist, wie wir dies auch bei dem Eins angaben, denn die Ganzezit (holotetos) ist ja nur eine Art von Einheit (henotetos).
(τούτων [35] δ᾽ αὐτῶν μᾶλλον τὰφύσει  τέχνῃ τοιαῦταὥσπερ καὶ ἐπὶ τοῦ ἑνὸς ἐλέγομενὡς οὔσης τῆς ὁλότητος ἑνότητός τινος.)

(3) Ferner nennt man von dem Quantitativen, welches Anfang (arche), Mitte und Ende (eschaton) hat, dasjenige, bei welchem die Lage keinen Unterschied macht, gesamt (pan),
wo dagegen die Lage einen Unterschied macht, ganz (holon);
wo beides stattfinden kann, gebraucht man sowohl ganz als gesamt.
Dies gilt von dem, dessen Natur zwar bei veränderter Lage dieselbe bleibt, die Gestalt aber nicht, z.B. Wachs, Kleid; von diesen braucht man sowohl ganz als gesamt, weil es beide Bestimmungen hat.
Das Wasser hingegen, alles Flüssige und die Zahl nennt man gesamt (pan), aber ganze Zahl oder ganzes Wasser (holon hydor) gebraucht man nicht, außer auf übertragene Weise.
Wo man aber von einem Dinge als Einheit 'gesamt' gebraucht, da gebraucht man von seinen getrennten Teilen 'gesamte': diese gesamte Zahl (pas ho arithmos), diese gesamten Einheiten

Anmerkung:  Ein wichtiger Unterschied ist der zwischen der Einheit im Sinne von Ganzheit von Teilen (holon) und der Einheit (pan), die dieser Ganzheit vorausgeht. Zur Bedeutung dieser Unterscheidung vgl. M. Heidegger, Platon: Sophistes, Frankfurt a.M. 1992, Vorlesung WS 1924/25, GA 19, 455-459.

27. Verstümmelt (kolobón)
Verstümmelt nennt man Dinge nur, wenn sie 1. quantitativ und teilbar sind, 2. ein Ganzes in der Weise sind, daß die Lage der Teile eine Rolle spielt, 3. ihre Teile ein Kontinuum bildet, 4. nicht-wesentliche äußerste Teile weggenommen sind

1.) Verstümmelt nennt man unter den quantitativen Dingen nicht jedes beliebige, sondern es muß teilbar und ein Ganzes (holon) sein. Denn die Zwei heißt nicht verstümmelt, wenn ihr die eine Eins genommen wird (denn die Verstümmelung und der Rest ist niemals gleich), und überhaupt heißt keine Zahl so; denn die Wesenheit muß bestehen bleiben; soll ein Becher vestümmelt sein, so muß er noch Becher sein, die Zahl aber ist dann nicht mehr dieselbe.

(2.) Aber ferner gebraucht man auch nicht von allem, was in ungleichartige Teile zerfällt, den Ausdruck verstümmelt - wie z.B. manche Zahl ungleiche Teile hat, etwa zwei und drei - und überhaupt von keinem Dinge, bei dem die Lage keinen Unterschied macht, wie etwa Wasser oder Feuer, sondern nur von solchen bei welchen die Lage zur Wesenheit gehört.

(3.) Und überdies müssen dieselben in stetigem Zusammenhang stehen; darum heißt die Harmonie, obwohl sie aus ungleichartigen Teilen besteht und eine Lage hat, doch nicht verstümmelt.

(4.) Außerdem ist auch ,  was ein Ganzes ist, nicht durch Entziehung jedes beliebigen Teiles verstümmelt. Es dürfen nämlich die weggenommenen Teile weder die wesentlich bestimmenden noch die an irgend einer beliebigen Stelle befindlichen sein; der Becher  z.B. heißt verstümmelt, nicht wenn er durchbohrt, sondern wenn der Henkel oder sonst irgendein äußerer Teil ihm genommen ist. Und so heißt auch der Mensch verstümmelt, nicht wenn ihm das Fleisch oder die Milz, sondern wenn ihm ein äußerer Teil genommen ist, und auch dann nicht in jedem Falle, sondern wenn dies ein solcher ist, der ganz weggenommen sich nicht wieder erzeugt. Darum nennt man die Kahlköpfigen nicht verstümmelt.

Vgl.  What is a holotes and its parts? Answer by Toney Fahey.

Ethics of Big Data

Michael Nerurkar, Michael, Wadephul, Christian & Wiegerling, Klaus (eds.)
 International Review of Information Ethics (IRIE), Nov 2016,


[...] A major effect (or benefit) of Big Data (as of any technology in general) might be to make things easier, more efficient, more rational, more economical etc. the deployment and use of technologies currently referred to as “Big Data” could also cause a fundamental shift in our understanding of ourselves and our individual, social, cultural and political life. This invasive feature of Big Data should be subject to public, political and academic discourses. In this sense, “Big Data” as in “Ethics of Big Data” serves as an integrative concept. It does not express one single strict technological definition, but functions to integrate many different perspectives on a bigger phenomenon or paradigm shift that is technological in a narrower sense only at its core, but social and cultural in its impact.

This throws up problems and questions in the various perspectives of disciplines like ethics, philosophy, epistemology, psychology, sociology, politics, jurisprudence or economics: Questions that are “ethical” in a wide sense, or “practical” in a classical sense: For example, autonomy and choice are concerned where supposedly highly accurate knowledge about persons “mined” from large sets of personal data leads to systems anticipating and pre-acting on our (presumed) desires, and “liberating” us from having to make our own decisions. Privacy is in question as regards how and with what amount of informed consent such individual data are collected and personality profiles are generated, stored, sold, made accessible to government agencies etc. Privacy is itself a necessary condition of autonomy since only when a private realm is guaranteed, and felt and known to be safe and free from external observation and intervention, one can engage in truly free processes of deliberation and decision making. Political freedom is at stake when government agencies practice data retention to profile citizens under the prospect of more security or more efficient regulation.

When talking about “data” one is led quickly to also talk about “information” and “knowledge”, furthermore of “theory” and “science”. In this regard, Big Data throws up not only ethical but epistemological and philosophical questions as well – to name just a few: What is data, ontologically? What is the relation between data, information, knowledge and theory, and how does one lead to the other? What sense is in speaking of data as “raw material” and of “mining” it? Big Data comes with claims to producing “better” knowledge, sometimes even with visions of making obsolete scientific models and theories, which clearly has epistemological and metaphysical implications since it purports to give us direct and “undistorted” access to reality. Those are claims that deserve thorough epistemological examination and critique. With Big Data we are given yet another label for self description of modern western type civilizations of the 21st century: Is it actually more appropriate to speak of “data societies” instead of “information societies” or of “knowledge societies”? The contributions to this issue, however, are primarily dedicated to ethical/practical aspects of Big Data, though partly questions of theoretical/epistemological nature are also discussed.

Concerning the dominant optical metaphors within the Big Data discourse Regine Buschauer suggests a conceptual approach that allows clearer distinctions between Big Data as “visions” and as data technologies. Buschauer outlines three perspectives on the nexus between data and vision(s). Following Bruno Latour’s counter-image of “oligoptica” Buschauer argues, more generally, in favor of a conceptual framework that understands Big Data as a sociotechnical infrastructure. Drawing on more recent studies, she discusses how such an approach allows to address social and ethical implications of present data technologies and practices in a more differentiated way.

In her contribution Jessica Heesen aims to explain, on one side, how a normative concept of the public sphere could be infiltrated by Big Data. Furthermore, she discusses how, on the other side, participative processes and common wealth can profit from a thorough use of Big Data analysis. Heesen introduces two important concepts: the numerical public (as a public that is constituted by machine-communication) and total politicisation (as a loss of negative freedom of expression).

Arne Manzeschke, Galia Assadi and Willy Viehöver consider Big Data to be a new form and instrument of biopolitics addressing both the categories of body and space. It is expected to fundamentally transform health care systems, domestic environments, and practices of self-observation and -reflection. Thus, the paper points out some problems and pitfalls as well as open questions that have emerged in the field of Ambient Assisted Living and that merit more attention in public and academic discourses.

Harald Weston asks whether predictive analytics enables businesses for purposes of lending money or extending credit, for example, to better assess characters of people beyond current objective measures of credit scores and standard financial metrics. Can individual character be measured and predicted with predictive analytics? The pervasive data surveillance of people that goes with Big Data and predictive analytics is not only an invasion of privacy in general, but an impairment of the aspect of privacy called autonomy that will constrict and alter a person’s choices and development of self.

In their article, Andreas Kaminski and Philipp Richter do not ask for possible losses of individual privacy and freedom but rather what Big Data visions mean for the concepts of self and human being. If “being oneself” according to Martin Heidegger is to live within a critical distance to predefined options, how can I know for sure then that I am “truly myself” and not just imitating behavior of others? Can Big Data help eliminate subjective distortions and illusions about our selves?

In his contribution, Bruno Gransche argues that the results of Big Data Analysis can be seen as today’s oracle. The uncertainty of the modern, complex world can be felt as a threat and lead to a demand for better foreknowledge. Part of the promise of Big Data is to grant better foreknowledge while omitting problems of scientific theory and modeling. Gransche discusses that people would simply have to believe in the results of such data anlysis which would make Big Data based outcomes a matter of faith.

We thank the authors for their contributions.

The Editors of this Volume: Prof. Dr. Klaus Wiegerling / Dr. Michael Nerurkar / Christian Wadephul, M. A.:  Institut für Systemanalyse und Technikfolgenabschätzung (ITAS), Karlsruher Institut für Technologie,· Postfach 3640, 76021 Karlsruhe, Germany  https://www.itas.kit.edu: ·  klaus.wiegerling@kit.edu / nerurkar@kit.edu / christian.wadephul@kit.edu*

Algorithm -

Quote from:  Rafael Capuro: Apud Arabes. Notes on Greek, Latin, Arabic, Persian, and Hebrew Roots of the Concept of Information

Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī

c. 780 (in Khiva - c. 850)

Source https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_ibn_Musa_al-Khwarizmi#Algebra

I quote from

"Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī (Persian: محمد بن موسی خوارزمی‎‎, Arabic: محمد بن موسى الخوارزمی‎‎; c. 780 – c. 850), formerly Latinized as Algoritmi, was a Persian (modern Khiva, Uzbekistan) mathematician, astronomer, and geographer during the Abbasid Caliphate, a scholar in the House of Wisdom in Baghdad. [...]

The Compendious Book on Calculation by Completion and Balancing (Arabic: الكتاب المختصر في حساب الجبر والمقابلة‎‎ al-Kitāb al-mukhtaṣar fī ḥisāb al-jabr wal-muqābala) is a mathematical book written approximately 830 CE. The book was written with the encouragement of Caliph al-Ma'mun as a popular work on calculation and is replete with examples and applications to a wide range of problems in trade, surveying and legal inheritance. The term "algebra" is derived from the name of one of the basic operations with equations (al-jabr, meaning "restoration", referring to adding a number to both sides of the equation to consolidate or cancel terms) described in this book. The book was translated in Latin as Liber algebrae et almucabala by Robert of Chester (Segovia, 1145) hence "algebra", and also by Gerard of Cremona. A unique Arabic copy is kept at Oxfordand was translated in 1831 by F. Rosen. A Latin translation is kept in Cambridge.

It provided an exhaustive account of solving polynomial equations up to the second degree, and discussed the fundamental methods of "reduction" and "balancing", referring to the transposition of terms to the other side of an equation, that is, the cancellation of like terms on opposite sides of the equation.

Al-Khwārizmī's method of solving linear and quadratic equations worked by first reducing the equation to one of six standard forms (where b and c are positive integers)

squares equal roots (ax2 = bx)
squares equal number (ax2 = c)
roots equal number (bx = c)
squares and roots equal number (ax2 + bx = c)
squares and number equal roots (ax2 + c = bx)

roots and number equal squares (bx + c = ax2)
by dividing out the coefficient of the square and using the two operations 

al-jabr (Arabicالجبر‎‎ "restoring" or "completion") 


al-muqābala ("balancing"). 

Al-jabr is the process of removing negative units, roots and squares from the equation by adding the same quantity to each side. For example, x2 = 40x − 4x2 is reduced to 5x2 = 40x. 
 is the process of bringing quantities of the same type to the same side of the equation.
For example, x2 + 14 = x + 5 is reduced to x2 + 9 = x."

I asked Mahmood Khosrowjerdi (See below) the following question:

I write you as ask you if you see any connection between the thinking of Muhammad ibn Musa al Khwarizmi and our discussions dealing with tasawwur and tasdiq particularly with the concepts of al-jabr and al-muqabala referring to adding a number to both sides of the equation to consolidate or cancel terms and the methods of reduction and balacing between the terms of an equation (al-Kitab al-mukhtasar fi hisab al-jabr wal-muqabala) 

His answer:

If we understand information as a mathematical or numerical concept as, for example, in Shannon's The Mathematical Theory of Communication, where information is understood as a measure of one's freedom of choice when one selects a message, then we can accord this concept to al-jgabr and al-muqabala of Al-Khwārizmī, because in Al-Khwārizmī's method of solving linear and quadratic equations, al-jabr is the process of removing negative units, roots and squares from the equation by adding the same quantity to each side, that is very similar to the perspective of Shannon and Weaver."(personal communication May 2, 2017)

My reply:

Al-Kwarizmi is interested in restoring an equation, similarly to Shannon who is interested in preserving the integrity of the message from a sender to a receiver. He admits that there is some insecurity (its measure being called 'information' in opposition to the usual meaning of this term in everyday language: the higher rate of 'insecurity' corresponds to more 'information') in the trasmission particularly when the code used to transmit a message is not fixed and limited and you have to deal with fuziness and probabilty. Norbert Wiener's cybernetics tied back the receiver to the sender. This is a dynamic restauration whose structure fits into what was called since the Middle Ages an algorithm. 

I quote from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Algorithm

"Etymologically, the word 'algorithm' is a combination of the Latin word algorismus, named after Al-Khwarizmi, a 9th-century Persian mathematician, and the Greek word arithmos, i.e. αριθμός, meaning "number".In English, it was first used in about 1230 and then by Chaucer in 1391. English adopted the French term, but it wasn't until the late 19th century that "algorithm" took on the meaning that it has in modern English."

Wirtschaftsethik in der Anwendung

Ethische Grundwerte lassen sich nicht vorschreiben. Deshalb fördern wir integres Verhalten durch zahlreiche Initiativen und einen kontinuierlichen Dialog. In den letzten Jahren hat Daimler Maßstäbe in den Bereichen Integrität und Compliance gesetzt.

Neue Ansätze bei der Mitarbeiteransprache

Neue Wege geht Daimler seit September 2014 mit dem Online-Spiel „Monster Mission“. Es sensibilisiert für Fragen integren Handelns und wird weltweit für alle Beschäftigten angeboten. Im Spiel führen die Mitarbeiter ihr fiktives Unternehmen durch kritische Situationen und müssen dabei ebenso ethische wie wirtschaftliche Aspekte berücksichtigen. Die Monster stehen für Verhaltensweisen, die nicht mit den Daimler Grundsätzen im Einklang stehen.

Kontinuierlicher Dialog und gemeinsame Grundsätze

Um die Kultur der Integrität stetig weiter zu entwickeln, pflegt Daimler bereits seit 2011 einen kontinuierlichen Dialog mit seinen Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeitern. Der regelmäßige Austausch zu Fragen der Integrität ist selbstverständlicher Teil des Arbeitsalltags.

Zu den gemeinsamen Grundsätzen gehören Fairness, Verantwortung und gegenseitiger Respekt.

Zentrales Ergebnis dieses konzernweiten Dialogs ist unsere Richtlinie für integres Verhalten, die im Jahr 2012 in Kraft getreten ist. Sie basiert auf einem gemeinsam mit unserer Belegschaft erarbeiteten Werteverständnis und legt die Grundsätze unseres Handelns im Geschäftsalltag fest, wie etwa Fairness, Verantwortung, gegenseitiger Respekt, Transparenz, Offenheit und die Achtung von Gesetzen und Rechten. Die konzernweit gültige Richtlinie steht in 23 Sprachen zur Verfügung. Unterstützung bei der Anwendung in konkreten Alltagssituationen bietet eine Orientierungshilfe, die auf die am häufigsten gestellten Fragen eingeht. Zusätzlich beantwortet ein Expertenteam Fragen zur Richtlinie.

Schulungen und kompetente Beratung zu Integrität

Um regelkonformes Verhalten sicherzustellen und zu fördern, werden Führungskräfte und Beschäftigte im Rahmen eines weltweiten Trainingsprogramms zu Integrität und Compliance intensiv geschult. Dadurch erhalten die Beschäftigten das Rüstzeug, um richtige Entscheidungen in schwierigen Situationen zu treffen und Risiken zu minimieren. Im Jahr 2013 haben wir ein webbasiertes Training zu unserem gemeinsamen Werteverständnis und unseren Verhaltensgrundsätzen für mehr als 100.000 Beschäftigte konzernweit ausgerollt. Weitere knapp 40.000 Beschäftigte absolvierten 2014 ein umfassendes webbasiertes Training zu Integrität, Compliance und Recht.

Seit März 2015 gibt es an den deutschen Standorten eine zentrale Anlauf- und Beratungsstelle für Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeiter bei Fragen zu Integrität. Darüber hinaus unterstützt der „Infopunkt Integrität“ auch bei weiteren Fragen und vermittelt die richtigen Ansprechpartner.

Daimler Compliance Akademie

Mit der Daimler Compliance Akademie bieten wir ein Seminar für externe Compliance-Praktiker aus Unternehmen aller Branchen. Ziel ist es, eine Plattform für den Erfahrungsaustausch über Compliance-Trends und -Herausforderungen zu schaffen. Im Mittelpunkt stehen der interaktive Austausch und die Vermittlung von Praxiswissen anhand von fiktiven Fallbeispielen. 

Kritischer Blick von außen

Ein wichtiger Impulsgeber bei Daimler ist seit 2012 der Beirat für Integrität und Unternehmensverantwortung. Ihm gehören unabhängige Experten aus Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft, Politik und Nichtregierungsorganisationen an, die über einen großen Erfahrungsschatz in Fragen ethischen Verhaltens verfügen. Sie begleiten den Integritätsprozess bei Daimler aus der Außenperspektive kritisch und konstruktiv.

Wirtschaftsethik in der Lehre

Duff McDonald

The Golden Passport. Harvard Business School, the Limits of Capitalism, and the Moral Failure of the MBA Elite.

New York 2017

"As Thomas Johnson reminds us, the reason that we began collaborating in organized groups in the first place was to help meet the needs of the people by utilizing our abilities to work both with each other and with our environment. And yet thanks to the likes of Milton Friedman and Michael Jensen, we find ourselves in a situation where the central institution of democratic capitalism the firm itself  –  has somehow come to exist in opposition to everything except its own bottom line. The idea that corporate leaders must focus on profits, and profits alone, isn't  just simplistic, it's outrageous. Everybody already knows that, though; the problem is that too many MBAs are either too cowardly, too weak, too greedy, or too buried under mountains of "analysis" to do otherwise, And that is what needs to change.

Business education's fundamental crime, adds J.-C. Spender, has been to allow, even embrace, an ideology that firms are ethically and politically neutral and thus overpower the absolutely obvious empirical facts that contradict this. In doing so, business educators have abandoned their academic role, which, aside from educating future generations, is to generate the possibility of critique and train students into doint it by themselves. That way lies nonviolent progress. But HBS will never escape articulating and propagating an ideology that buttresses the present sociopolitical situation until it articulates a more pertinent and relevant theory of the firm.

By virtue of its own decisions, the School has abdicated any meaningful societal role it might have had and instead become a key player in what one might call the culture of optimization. The things that are supposed to matter – meaning, contribution, civility, fairness, and community have been replaced by an obsession with tweaking the numbers in the hope of maximizing profits. Not only that, but most companies know only one way to get there, through reductionism, cost-cutting, stressing efficiency at the expense of quality, and endless metrics. It is a wonder that those who find meaning through measurement are hell-bent on measuring every goddamn thing that they can?
HBS should and can  –  play a part in helping more people who think about business rediscover a purpose other than profit. But it's not going to get us there by clinging to its morally bankrupt insistence that there is no correct answer to any particular business situation. Because the fact of the matter is that there are some answers that are more correct that others. To be credible, too, they'll probably want to stop engaging in superficial and facile displays of problem solving, such as their solutions to ingrained sexism at the school. Perhaps, too, they ought to rethink their embrace of the absurdity of "authentic leadership" and its focus on the spiritual well-being of society's most fortunate in favor of a more broad-gauged idea such as the well-being of society itself. It could start by remedying its outrageous failure to examine the troubling "externalities" of democratic capitalism.
That IBS has proved successful at helping people be successful is without question. But what we don't need from HBS is yet another generation of people who are motivated by success and success alone. What we need is for the School to finally deliver on its founding premise, which is to produce enlightened businesspeople who make a positive difference in the world. To do that, it needs more graduate more people who are motivated to solve problems, and fewer people who create them
In the social sciences and the study of business, despite the best efforts of HBS and others to quantify it over the years, is indeed a social science –  the academic's primary role is a philosophical one, to help clarify the language of our democratic discourse. They are given the space to disengage, observe, critique, and help salvage language from the damage wrought by those in power. The erosion of America's economic and cultural promise began with the corruption of that discourse, and the tragedy of the Harvard Business School is that for all its resources, it has failed to mount a sustained intellectual or philosophical effort to stop the corrosion from spreading.

The marriage of profits and politics was destined to alienate the people eventually; corporate interests have for too long overwhelmed, or, worse, acted in direct opposition to the needs of society. And the election of Donald Trump signals that the process is complete. The only real shock is that the inevitable somehow managed to sneak up on the Establishment and its MBAs. Or perhaps it's not so shocking Hillary Clinton thought that a crystal ball built out of spreadsheets could see the future, and she end3ed up as disconnected from the electorate as the modern MBA is from the people they oversee.

What's crystal clear today is that society is sick, with the victory of Donald Trump simply the most visible symptom. If there is a silver lining to all the ugliness, it's that it's now more obvious than ever that it's time to get back to the things that really matter, which is not money or metrics, but people. And yet the Harvard Business School remains in its inward-facing huddle, repeating empty mantras of enlightenment that fly in the face of simple, undeniable fact. The result: At this point, they are relevant only unto themselves, they've got it. But if they want to be relevant to be important  –  to the future well-being of us all, then it's time they stopped pretending to make the world a better place and actually started doing so." (576-578)

Letztes Update: 4. June 2017

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