Utilitarian Analysis : The Volkswagen Dilemma

1250 WordsAug 22, 20165 Pages
(1)(a): Utilitarian analysis Utilitarianism is a consequentialist theory that judges an action on its outcomes and aims to maximize happiness. This means finding the action that generates the “greatest good for the greatest number”. The Volkswagen dilemma comprises whether it is ethically permissible to install the defeat device. Several stakeholders, mainly the manager, the costumers including consumers and dealers, the general public and shareholders, will be affected. Stakeholders Positive consequences (pleasure) → Increase in happiness Defeat device publicised (40% probabillity) Not publicised Increase in Happiness points (HP) Manager Healthy sales of VW cars → Increase in financial rewards and greater recognition -rewards: 40,000 -recognition: 40,000 =total: 80,000 Shareholders Improved financial returns (higher share price/ dividends); VW has issued more than 502 million shares (Volkswagen AG, 2016, p.13) - Increase of one HP per 1,000 shares - 502 million x 0,001 x 1 =total: 502,000 Grand Total: 582,000 Stakeholders Negative consequences (pain) → Decrease in happiness Defeat device publicised (40% probability) Not publicised Decrease in Happiness points (HP) Manager Loss of reputation and sales; fines for VW → loss of status and being made responsible for the scandal - 100,000 x 0.4 (40% probability)

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