Emerging Ethical Challenges of Leadership in the Digital Era : A Multi-Vocal Literature Review
Bhatta, N. (2021). Emerging Ethical Challenges of Leadership in the Digital Era : A Multi-Vocal Literature Review. Electronic Journal of Business Ethics and Organization Studies, 26(1), 30-46. http://ejbo.jyu.fi/pdf/ejbo_vol26_no1_pages_30-46.pdf
© Business and Organization Ethics Network (BON), 2021
The purpose of this study is to undertake a multi-vocal literature review (MLR) regarding how leadership work has transformed as a result of digitalization and what kinds of ethical challenges organizational leaders are facing in the digital era, particularly from 1985 to 2020. Hence, a total of 83 literature are reviewed, drawing up on the method of MLR. The findings of this study suggest that the digitalization of leadership work, i.e., delegation of personal (leadership) responsibilities to digital systems, is being accelerated by the ever increasing use of technologies based on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in organizational governance and operation, particularly during the last two decades. In the reviewed literature, ethical challenges of leadership in the digital era are often discussed in subtle forms, from the viewpoint of the ethics of digitalization in general and its apparent consequences in organizational systems – Specifically, an apparent lack of industry standards, codes of ethics and professional conduct, for AIbased digital technologies. Likewise, disruptions and complexities caused by digitalization trends in conjunction with globalization, climate change and sustainable development goals are noticed as posing further significant challenges for leaders, particularly in relation to ethical organization systems design in the digital era. Hence, this study outlines the three main conceptual fields of discussion towards deepening our understanding of the transformation of leadership work and emerging ethical challenges to leaders in contemporary organizations caused by the increased use of advanced digital technologies. ...