What Is Responsibility?


When people are given a task to accomplish, they are said to be have a responsibility. Still, when an individual causes something to happen, they are said to be responsible for the act. Further, people may be expected to do something because it is right or legal. Thus, people will say that they have responsibility to act in a certain way. Clearly, the word responsibility is used differently.

Responsibility in the Corporate World and In Social Circles

In the corporate world, the word responsibility is used to when trying to reach the goals of a company. Different employees will be obligated and given duties so that the company can be successful. It is also used when the corporate world wants to offer services to the community. The word used is corporate social responsibility. It is argued that since the society participates in the building of various companies by buying products, those companies must give back by initiating projects to help the majority in the community.

In the social circles, the religious groups may expect people to act responsibly based on the moral values that been already set. Reward or punishment is offered to people based on their actions. Those who oppose the values and act on their free will risk being isolated by the society while those who embrace the values will be ranked.

Diffusion of Responsibility, Collective Responsibility, and Diminished Responsibility

In psychology the word responsibility can be used when trying to resolve conflict in groups. There are people who show diffusion of responsibility when other people are present. It means that they may be unwilling to act accordingly because they expect others to do it. Thus, a psychologist will propose that responsibilities are defined and assigned to specific individuals so that conflict can be minimized in the end.

In criminal law, the word diminished responsibility is used. The offender can indicate that though they did not act responsibly, they were unable to do so because of their mental status. Judges may request the health practitioners such as psychiatrists to conduct various tests to establish the truth about such claims.

In the religious world, the word collective responsibility is used. It implies that some people have to be responsible for other people’s actions. Thus, they will suffer when other people refuse to adhere to the rules set by a supreme being. The word can also be used in schools where the whole institution is punished for the actions of one pupil. Indeed, the word responsibility is used in different settings and has different meanings.

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