Online ethical leadership course a first for New Zealand

With the ethics of global business, political and sporting leaders under scrutiny, Victoria University of Wellington is offering a free online course in ethical leadership as part of its programme of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) that is a first for the country.

Presented by Professor Karin Lasthuizen, Brian Picot Chair in Ethical Leadership in the University’s School of Management, and Professor Alan Lawton, Visiting Professor to the Brian Picot Chair in Ethical Leadership, Ethical Leadership in a Changing World explores the theories of ethical leadership and teaches students how to become more ethical business leaders.

A media release from Victoria University says the six-week course draws on New Zealand case studies and features insights from New Zealand public, private and non-governmental organisation (NGO) sector leaders into the main issues ethical leadership should address.

Course participants will hear from leaders including: Kirsten Patterson, chief executive for Institute of Directors in New Zealand; Rob Everett, CEO Financial Markets Authority; Stephen Walker, executive director of Audit New Zealand; Julie Read, chief executive and director of Serious Fraud Office and Suzanne Snively, chair of Transparency International New Zealand.

“New Zealand is one of the least corrupt countries in the world, according to Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), and integrity and care are core values in our business dealings. But there are many examples of both ethical and unethical leadership in business, politics, and sport around the world,” says Professor Lasthuizen.

Focused on organisations, the course looks at the role of ethics in organisational decision-making, analyses the actions of leaders from an ethical perspective, and encourages people to apply the concept of ethical leadership to their own leadership style.

“Individuals, organisations, and society all benefit from this approach to leadership, and this course aims to help people adopt ethical leadership practices in daily work situations. There’s no more important time to be thinking about ethical leadership than right now,” says Professor Lasthuizen.

The course is the latest addition to the university’s growing programme of innovative MOOCs on the international edX platform. These include a virtual field trip to Antarctica (Antarctica: From Geology to Human History); the world’s first restorative justice MOOC, Restorative Justice and Practice: Emergence of a Social Movement; and New Zealand Landscape as Culture, New Zealand’s first bicultural series of MOOCs.

Ethical Leadership in a Changing World starts on Wednesday, 3 July, 2019.

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