Exploring Work Ethic in Ghana


  •   Ishmael D. Norman


This paper explores the philosophical, sociological and historical basis of work-ethic in Ghana, bearing in mind Marx Weber’s Protestant Work Ethic and its effects on largely Christian and capitalistic population of Ghana. It relies on normative ethics, the collective national perception of work and actual productivity in certain industries, the quality of made-in-Ghana goods and services, and the pursuit of professionalism, aided by extensive literature review and content analysis. The author raised the dialectical but main research question as to whether Ghana has a national ethical code beyond the imported Judo-Christian, and other faith-based but incongruent moral dictums on work. The second research question is whether the ethnic groups in Ghana have their unique but positive culturally relative or philosophical takes on work? Third inquiry was whether the myriad cultural values coalesce into a cultural ethical relative value system for Ghana? The key outcome of the exploration revealed, there appears to be disconnect between official rhetoric on productivity and the phenomenon of work in the nation and among the ethnic groups. This is due to the absence of a well-defined national or regional overarching moral basis for work. There is also the lack of the cultural estimation of productivity as a measure of a well-functioning workforce and society like Germany and Japan, or a more laissez faire nation like the United States of America. As novel as this paper is about Ghana’s work ethic, it may not inform policy on national productivity or even help to define the national work ethic, due to the fact that the author is not a politician with power over policy direction in Ghana.

Keywords: Ghana, Normative Ethics, Productivity, Work-Ethic


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How to Cite
Norman, I. D. (2023). Exploring Work Ethic in Ghana. European Journal of Development Studies, 3(2), 23–37. https://doi.org/10.24018/ejdevelop.2023.3.2.232