How Palantir Falls Short of Responsible Corporate Conduct
— September 12, 2019
By Michael Posner
Karp tries to frame corporate obligations solely in legal terms, stating that “no leader should knowingly permit his or her products to be used illegally.” Abiding by the law is necessary but insufficient. Companies must also pursue their core business objectives ethically and take proactive steps to mitigate the risks associated with their business models and their products. Palantir’s high profile and often controversial business activities provide an instructive case study.
Founded in 2004 in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, Palantir received early investments from Peter Thiel, one of its founders, and In-Q-Tel, a venture capital arm of the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA and other U.S. government intelligence agencies, as well as elements of the U.S. military, became the firm’s anchor clients. Palantir has helped strengthen U.S. national security interests, enabling the government to fill some of the gaps in intelligence-gathering that the 9/11 attacks laid bare.
Read the full Forbes article.
Michael Posner is a Professor of Business and Society and Director of the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.