The conscientious HR manager and the Rubik's Cube

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Abstract:

Purpose ‐ By examining the literature on the ethical dilemmas of H/RM practitioners, the paper aims to put an "H" in H/RM. Design/methodology/approach ‐ Analysing the significant contribution which H/RM scholars have made in studying the ethical dilemmas of H/RM practitioners, the paper builds a view of an H/RM practitioner as a "conscientious HR manager" loosely connected to an ethical dilemma, a "Rubik's Cube". Using these linguistic devices to simplify others scholarly work, the paper introduces a complex autopoietic system to provide a more "connected knowing" of ethical dilemmas and the "H" in H/RM. Findings ‐ Generalising from this analysis, the paper connects a social sub-system (H/RM) with a living human system. Research limitations/implications ‐ Naturalistic "grounds" for launching a normative critique of H/RM that celebrates humans as social and biological animals are provisionally outlined. Originality/value ‐ The paper adapts Capra's complex autopoietic system to present a normative critique of H/RM from the Darwinian left.

Keywords: Ethics; Human biology; Human resource management research; Philosophical concepts

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/00483480910992238

Publication date: September 18, 2009

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