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Metaphors, models and organisational ethics in health care
  1. Jennifer McCrickerd
  1. Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, USA


    Crucial to discussions in organisational ethics is an evaluation of the metaphors and models we use to understand the organisations we are discussing. I briefly defend this contention and evaluate three possible models: the current corporate model, an orchestrator model which puts hospitals in the same class as malls and airports, and a community model. I argue that the corporate and orchestrator model push to the background some important organisational ethics issues and bias us inappropriately towards certain solutions. Furthermore, I argue that the community model allows these to be more easily brought up. I also respond to the likely challenge that hospitals really are corporations by arguing that this is not relevant to evaluations of the appropriateness of the corporate model.

    • Metaphor
    • model
    • organisational ethics
    • health care ethics

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    • Jennifer McCrickerd, PhD, is Associate Professor, Philosophy Department, Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, USA.