The ethical advantage: the economic and social benefits of ethics to Australia (The Ethics Centre Oct 2020)

We know what ethical failure costs – look at the billions of dollars paid by financial institutions in penalties and customer remediation since Hayne. But what are the economic benefits of ethical best practice? What can we gain economically by being more ethical as a nation?

Turning around the loss of trust in government, corporations and institutions could deliver Australians significant economic and social dividends.  The Ethical Advantage’s exclusive new economic modelling by Deloitte Access Economics shows that if our leaders, businesses, institutions and everyday Australians made more ethical decisions, our GDP, wages, corporate returns and mental health would improve.

For the first time, the report quantifies the benefits of ethics for individuals and for the nation. An increase in ethical behaviour could raise Australians’ average income by $1,800 a year, lifting GDP by $45 billion. An increase in a company’s performance based on ethical perceptions can increase return on assets by about 7%. The modelling also reveals a host of individual and collective benefits for Australians across wages, trust and mental health.

The report also identifies five interlinked areas for improvement for Australia and its approach to ethics, supported by 30 individual initiatives. Download a copy to learn more.

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