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Markkula Center for Applied Ethics

Ethics Cases

Find case studies and scenarios on a variety of fields in applied ethics.

Cases can also be viewed by the following categories:


Business Ethics

Engineering Ethics

ESG Topics

Ethical Issues for Students

Government Ethics

Immigration Ethics

Internet Ethics

Journalism Ethics 

Leadership Ethics

Social Sector Ethics

Technology Ethics

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Looking to draft your own case studies? This template provides the basics for writing ethics case studies in technology (though with some modification it could be used in other fields as well).



All Cases
  • A Tech Ethics Case Study

    Ethical questions arise in interactions among students, instructors, administrators, and providers of AI tools.

  • In water rights discussions, there is an ethical responsibility to include Indigenous people in both conversations and legislation decisions.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    In this business ethics case study, Swedish multinational company IKEA faced accusations relating to child labor abuses in the rug industry in Pakistan which posed a serious challenge for the company and its supply chain management goals.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    A dog may be humanity’s best friend. But that may not always be the case in the workplace.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    A recent college graduate works in the finance and analytics department of a large publicly traded software company and discovers an alarming discrepancy in sales records, raising concerns about the company’s commitment to truthful reporting to investors. 

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    What responsibility does an employee have when information they obtained in confidence from a coworker friend may be in conflict with the needs of the company or raises legal and ethical questions.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    A manager at a prominent multinational company is ethically challenged by a thin line between opportunity for economic expansion in a deeply underserved community, awareness of child labor practices, and cultural relativism.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    A volunteer providing service in the Dominican Republic discovered that the non-profit he had partnered with was exchanging his donor money on the black market, prompting him to navigate a series of complex decisions with significant ethical implications.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    The CFO of a family business faces difficult decisions about how to proceed when the COVID-19 pandemic changes the business revenue models, and one family shareholder wants a full buyout.

  • A Business Ethics Case Study

    An employee at an after-school learning institution must balance a decision to accept or decline an offered gift, while considering the cultural norms of the client, upholding the best interests of all stakeholders, and following the operational rules of his employer. 

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