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Cadernos EBAPE.BR

On-line version ISSN 1679-3951

Abstract

PROCOPIO, Marcos Luís. The moral dimension of managerial decisions and the limits of bounded rationality. Cad. EBAPE.BR [online]. 2017, vol.15, n.4, pp.783-807. ISSN 1679-3951.  https://doi.org/10.1590/1679-395154238.

The study of organizational decisions, nowadays, shows a great diversity of epistemological, theoretical-conceptual and methodological approaches. However, few ideas have had an impact as profound and lasting in management thinking about decisions, as those related to bounded rationality. Introduced by Herbert Simon in the late 1940s, bounded rationality supposedly denies the underpinnings of full rationality and proposes a more “realistic” way to describe how choices are made by individuals in organizations. In spite of its progress, when compared to the full rationality model, does bounded rationality really mean a paradigm shift in the interpretation of management decision? This theoretical essay aims to demonstrate that the bounded rationality model does not break with the orthodox model of full rationality, as it is still far from addressing the effectively relevant aspects of managerial decisions, namely, its moral aspects. This study also presents and discuss some conceptual elements which could be useful to build a moral theory of rationality in order to demonstrate how an actual disruption with Simon´s rationality concept could be articulated and what would be the advances and benefits that such disruption could bring to the investigation of the decision-making processes in organizations.

Keywords : Rationality; Morality; Managerial decision; Herbert Simon; John Dewey.

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