Author(s) Juliana Sofia Fernandes Teixeira
Advisor(s) Manuel Curado and Maria de Assunção do Vale Pereira
Synopsis There are many issues arising on the subject of Non-Governmental Organizations: its history, its ideology or the demands they respond to. The purpose of this dissertation is not intended to addressing all these issues. What we want to do respects the importance of these issues but seeks to formulate another question. Thus, and otherwise, we will seek to isolate some ethical issues that NGOs raise. The features of the ethical problematic of these institutions are quite varied, including its principles, the safeguard of the underprivileged people, encouraging protection of the human being, the daily struggle for social equality, the criteria for distribution of scarce aid resources, altruism, the foundation of the ethical action of these organizations, the influence of the model of founding figures, the rationality of charity, etc. We will try to find the common purpose of these organizations; clearly cherishing their peculiar features. This research defends a working hypothesis: the charitable action revealed on the hard work of NGO displays, first of all, a sort of smart kindness. Social discriminations should not be considered as a simple consequence of economic progress. One should have the desire to build a more just and egalitarian society, where distributive justice is one, if not the greatest, objetive to fulfill. Therefore, this work will seek to establish the new moral strategies addressing the social concerns of contemporary society, reflecting on the balance of contributions between goodness and rationality, we will investigate the role of these organizations in the defense of human rights and, finally, we will examine how the State, the law and the legal status support charitable NGO in Portugal.
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