COMMLD 551: The Law and Ethics of Organizations

Course Description:

All organizations — private, public and non-profit — inevitably encounter legal and ethical challenges when building and engaging with their communities and networks. Leaders must be able to identify, anticipate, and problem solve issues such as how to create and maintain legal and ethical organizations, and how legal relationships are created. They must also grapple with challenges such as to whom legal and ethical duties are owed, and what advocacy strategies to employ when defining deliverables and implementing initiatives. This course considers and juxtaposes the legal and ethical realities of community building through a cross-sector approach. We will survey a wide array of case studies, many with a social justice backdrop, in which law and ethics may overlap, conflict, or contain gaps. We will engage in practical story exercises that maximize understanding of how law and ethics impact how organizations communicate to clients, customers, and constituencies. Throughout the course, you are encouraged to bring in legal and ethical issues from your professional experiences to enrich discussion of course topics.