Education for Ethics and Human Resource Management: A Necessary Synergy

Jeremy Plant, Bing Ran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Many public administration ethicists argue that a single stand-alone course in ethics should be a part of every M.P.A. curriculum, but some programs may prefer to incorporate ethics into several courses. This article suggests that a series of courses would be a promising alternative to a standalone ethics course. It would begin in the M.P.A. introductory course by setting a foundation for the study of ethics and then relate ethics to human resource management (HRM) in a sequence of required and elective HRM courses. The long and evolutionary relationship between ethics and HRM can provide a strong basis for ethics education with two purposes in mind: first, to show the generalist public administration student the ethical issues involved in managing personnel systems, and second, to acquaint students interested in careers in HRM to be ethically aware in situations they are likely to face in their careers. The literature in HRM and ethics is reviewed to develop a conceptual linkage between the two topics. The article concludes by showing how the two have been integrated in a three-course sequence in a NASPAA-accredited M.P.A. program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-238
Number of pages18
JournalPublic Integrity
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Philosophy
  • Public Administration
  • Law


Dive into the research topics of 'Education for Ethics and Human Resource Management: A Necessary Synergy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this