When Good Companies Go Bad

100 Corporate Miscalculations and Misdeeds

by Donald W. Beachler and Thomas Shevory


Roughly 20,000 people lost their jobs in the collapse of Enron.

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Cover image for When Good Companies Go Bad

September 2014


Pages 255
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Current Events and Issues/Business

Covering the entire world of business from heavy industry to the financial houses of Wall Street, this book shines a spotlight on 100 of the most infamous cases of misconduct and malfeasance in corporate history.

Corporations are in the business of making money. But when companies forget ethics, take operational shortcuts, or willingly endanger customers and the general public in their quest for profits, disasters of enormous magnitude can result. This book examines 100 of the worst cases of corporate greed and irresponsibility and poses the questions: Is it necessary or desirable to conduct business in this manner? Do the penalties and other punishments levied against these companies go far enough? And what is the government's responsibility for keeping corporate misdeeds in check?

Coauthored by distinguished public policy experts, When Good Companies Go Bad: 100 Corporate Miscalculations and Misdeeds presents a representative sample of cases on a variety of topics, such as the financial sector, health care, environmental protection, product liability, and copyright. This broad introduction to the dark side of the corporate world focuses on events and scandals that resulted in substantial financial penalties, regulatory actions, or criminal convictions. The cases are presented in a readable and engaging format, making the book an illuminating and informative read for high school and college students as well as businesspeople, lawyers, journalists, and professors who teach American politics, public law, or public policy.


    • Presents cogent and accessible explanations of some of the most important cases involving corporate misconduct of this century in a manner suitable for both general readers and specialists
    • Supplies information about the financial penalty involved, legal issues, public policy implications, and human stories of the individuals involved for each case
    • Includes a bibliography for further research, an appendix of the corporations involved, and sidebars containing additional information such as clarifying details and connections to related topics and relevant websites
Author Info

Donald W. Beachler is associate professor of politics at Ithaca College. His published work includes The Genocide Debate: Politicians, Academics, and Victims and journal articles and book chapters on many aspects of American politics and public policy. He also coauthored two books on American presidential elections in 2004 and 2008. Beacher has taught courses that cover the roles of business and labor in the political system of the United States as well as in the field of genocide studies. He received his doctorate from Cornell University.

Thomas Shevory is a professor of politics at Ithaca College. He teaches courses in public policy, law, and popular culture. His published work includes Toxic Burn: The Grassroots Struggle against the WTI Incinerator and Notorious HIV: The Media Spectacle of Nushawn Williams. Shevory is also codirector of the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival. He received his doctorate from the University of Iowa.

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