Ethics Essay

Since he is the world’s wealthiest man, it is not surprising that Bill Gates is the subject of much controversy. As a businessman, he has been described as brilliant and innovative on one hand but also as ruthless and cutthroat in his business practices. Criticisms have included both the atmosphere he created in the workplace as well as the tactics he has used to try to beat his competitors. And while some have questioned the tactics he used to become the world’s richest man, he is also donating a huge portion of his fortune to charity. But his charitable activity has also been criticized as he brings some of his business management style to his charity work.

You won’t have any trouble finding articles about Bill Gates, but try to find several articles both positive and negative about him and a balance of information both about how he has run Microsoft and how he has run the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation or other charities. Compare and contrast what you’ve read about him with the various virtues and vices that you read about in the background readings such as Brusseau (2012) and Velasquez et al. (2008). Think carefully about which virtues and vices apply to Gates’ business and charitable activities.

There is plenty of information on Bill Gates out there, but here are a few articles to get you started on your research that will give you some idea of the controversies surrounding the man:

McCullough, J. (n.d.) Bill Gates. Americans that matter. Retrieved from

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McIlvaine, A. (2016, February 4). Bill Gates’ ruthless management style of yore. HRE Daily. Retrieved from

Piller, C. (2014, August 24). How the Gates Foundation’s investments are undermining its own good works. The Nation. Retrieved from
Case Assignment
After doing some research on Bill Gates, choose at least two virtues and at least once vice that are mentioned in Brusseau (2012) or Velasquez et al. (2008). Also, make sure to thoroughly review the materials on critical thinking in the background readings. It is very important to use critical thinking in this paper, especially for Question 2. Once you have finished your research on Bill Gates and are clear on what critical thinking is, write a 4- to 5-page paper with the following:
1. State the virtues and vices that you will focus on, and give the definitions of these virtues or vices using a reputable online dictionary (e.g., . Note that this part of the assignment doesn’t require much critical thinking – you are just giving some definitions.
2. Using a section heading for discussion of each of your chosen virtues or vice, discuss how each virtue/vice applies to some ethical issue raised in your readings about Bill Gates. For example, you might want to describe how Bill Gates lived up to these virtues or vices or how he might have better handled a situation through use of one of these virtues. This is the main part of the assignment and requires a lot of critical thinking. Don’t just summarize information, instead explain based on the definition of each virtue and vice how they apply to Bill Gates. And use information from the articles to support the article. Don’t just blindly summarize information from the articles, instead point out how specific actions by Bill Gates embody or not embody the virtues and vices you have chosen to discuss. And remember to divide your paper into clear sections with headings based on each of the virtues and vices you are discussing.
3. Conclude your paper with one or two paragraphs giving your overall evaluation of Bill Gates and his ethics. Any final thoughts on why a “cutthroat” or “ruthless” business man also became one of the world’s most generous philanthropists?
Assignment Expectations
Be sure to use at least two sources from the library to support your discussion and analysis (choose sources that are not included in the Background section of Module 2).
• Follow The Student Guide to Writing a High Quality Academic Paper guide.
• Don’t forget to properly cite your sources—both in-text and as end references!
• You are expected to demonstrate evidence of critical thinking—as defined in the readings above on critical thinking and the grading rubric. Remember that this means your paper should not be just a summary of the articles and book chapters that you read, but rather an expression of your own opinions and analysis.

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Last Updated on March 21, 2019 by EssayPro