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    Kohlberg's Six stages of Moral Development

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    Lawrence Kohlberg theorized that there are six stages of moral development through which a person may pass as they develop from infancy to adulthood. Kohlberg was interested in the way that people arrived at their moral judgment when faced with social dilemmas.

    In this question you will assume that a small catering company has run into cash flow problems. The owner can lay off half of his employees and retain the other half with full benefits, or he can keep everyone but cancel all health insurance benefits. He knows each of these employees personally and they have helped him to grow the business.

    For this question you will need to answer three parts:

    Give an overview of Kohlberg's six stages of moral development.
    Answer what the catering company owner would do in each of the six stages. In other words, how would his actions change in each stage of development?
    If you were the owner, what choice would you make? Justify it using the ethical theories you have studied in this class.

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    Solution Preview

    Kohlberg's six stages of moral development and the owner's decisions:

    1. Stage one-If I disobey, how bad will my punishment be? In that stage, the owner would be thinking about which option would lead to less consequences to the company. For example, if he keeps everyone, who's going to run the company's day to day operations? How will less individuals working affect future revenue? Besides, those who are let go will be able to apply for unemployment and I will still end up losing money. In this stage, the owner would keep everyone but cancel all health insurance benefits.

    2. Stage two-What do I get out of all this? In that ...

    Solution Summary

    A case study involving Kohlberg's six stages of moral development.

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