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1. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
John Hooker Editor's Forward
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education research articles
2. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Usang, John Eno Agbor, Kabiru Isa Dandago The Case for Accounting Ethics Education in Nigerian Universities
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In view of the consequences of the unethical behaviour of accountants as witnessed in the collapse of banks and near collapse of the capital market in Nigeria, the study examined the knowledge, awareness, and perceived importance students attached to accounting ethics education. The curriculum content of the Bachelor of Science degree programme in accounting of the selected federal universities was also examined to assess whether accounting ethics was offered as a standalone course or not. The survey method was used to solicit responses from 113 third and final year accounting students of two Federal Universities in the South-South geopolitical zone of Nigeria. The result of the independent samples t-test conducted showed no difference in the importance attached to accounting ethics education by the respondents. Also, results indicate that some students are aware of accounting ethics as part of an auditing course but more than half of the sampled population of students got the knowledge elsewhere other than the classroom. The results also suggest that the teaching of accounting ethics has potentials of producing ethically sensitive future accountants for the Nigerian economy. The paper, therefore, recommends that accounting ethics should be taught as a separate course unit at an appropriate level of the Bachelor’s degree programme, preferably from the first year of entry. This would go a long way in preparing them on how to respond to ethical dilemmas in the future.
3. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Denni Arli, Andre Pekerti The Role of Cultural Attributes on Consumer Ethics: Does It Matter?
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The total number of international migrants has increased significantly in the last 10 years such that people are faced with various ethical situations in their new host country, which challenge their previous moral philosophies. Studies have found that culture is one of the most important variables influencing ethical decision-making. The purpose of this study is to investigate the role of self-concept (i.e. independent and interdependent) and cultural intelligence on consumer ethics in two cultures, Australia and Indonesia. With a total sample of 1,142 respondents, the analyses showed that the interdependent self-concept influenced all dimensions of consumer ethics while cultural intelligence had an effect on attitudes toward “recycling” and “doing good” toward others. The findings have important implications for businesses, marketers, and policymakers to develop better strategies to include consumers’ ethical characteristics.
4. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Nicki Marquardt An Experimental Approach to the Evaluation of Business Ethics Training: Explaining Mixed Results and Implications for Future Designs of Business Ethics Training Programs
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This article reports an experimental study aimed at evaluating the change of cognitive processes in ethical decision making before and after business ethics training. An experimental design (Solomon Four-Group Design) was used to test the effectiveness of the training within a German university undergraduate business-oriented student sample. The cognitive processes in decision making (implicit and explicit moral attitudes, selective attention, moral awareness, moral judgment, moral intention, and moral behavior) were measured by using different direct instruments (e.g. questionnaire items for moral judgments and explicit moral attitude scales) as well as indirect measures such as eye-tracking and the Implicit Association Test (IAT). The study yielded mixed results. On the one hand, significant changes in explicit attitudes, moral awareness, moral judgments, moral intention, and moral behavior in the pre-post-measurements of the training group have been revealed. On the other hand, there were no significant differences between the pre-post-measurements of the first training and control group as well as between the posttest-only-measures of the second training and control group. In addition, the implicit measures did not show any significant training effect. Implications with an emphasis on methodological aspects for future research on business ethics training are discussed.
5. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
William F. Miller, Tara J. Shawver The Potential Impact of Education on Whistleblowing Behavior: Benefits of an Intervention in Advanced Financial Accounting
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Accounting fraud and workplace misconduct has had dramatic economic and societal effects. Research suggests that most observations of workplace misconduct go unreported. We suggest that before graduating from an accounting program, students should be exposed to ethics interventions that prepare them to deal with whistleblowing situations they may encounter as future accounting professionals. This study finds that an ethics intervention increases students’ understanding of how accountants have manipulated information to complete an accounting fraud and increases their understanding of whistleblowing, its consequences, and protections for whistleblowers under the Sarbanes Oxley Act. Further, this study finds that an ethics intervention not only increases the students’ level of ethical sensitivity and judgment, but also positively impacts the likelihood that an accounting student would intend to blow the whistle for situations involving accounting manipulations. This study also provides empirical evidence that analyzing cases and participating in class discussions are effective ways of meeting specific course goals related to whistleblowing.
6. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Jodyanne Kirkwood, Melissa Baucus, Kirsty Dwyer Ethics in Entrepreneurship Education: The Case of a Student Start-Up Entrepreneur
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Ethics researchers focus on moral awareness as a precursor to ethical decision making, but they pay little attention to framing processes that precede moral awareness. This study addresses this gap in the literature to examine how a student entrepreneur starting a venture while completing an assignment frames issues and how these frames affect moral awareness (i.e., whether or not the entrepreneur considers ethical dimensions). Framing does not occur in isolation but is part of a sensemaking process involving others. Using a single case study method, we capture an entrepreneur’s framing process over time as the new venture emerges and our data reveals frames that may preclude consideration of ethical dimensions, including some frames developed and reinforced through entrepreneurship education. We make a contribution to the entrepreneurship education literature by suggesting ways to incorporate ethics into entrepreneurship courses.
7. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Charles M. Vance, Judith A. White, Kevin S. Groves, Yongsun Paik, Lin Guo Comparing Thinking Style and Ethical Decision-Making Between Chinese and U.S. Students: Potential for Future Clash?
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This study provides a comparison of thinking style and ethical decision-making patterns between 386 U.S. students and 506 students from the People’s Republic of China enrolled in undergraduate business education in their respective countries. Contrary to our expectations, the Chinese students demonstrated a significantly greater linear thinking style compared to American students. As hypothesized, both Chinese and U.S. students possessing a balanced linear and nonlinear thinking style profile demonstrated greater ethical intent across a series of ethics vignettes. Chinese students also were more likely to adopt an act utilitarian rationale, an ethical philosophy that in practice may violate government regulations or social rules to benefit one’s family instead of society for explaining their decisions across the vignettes. We conclude with a discussion of important theoretical as well as practical and potential future implications based on this comparative study.
8. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Ali Intezari, David Pauleen, David Rooney Rediscovering Philosophia: The PhD as a Path to Enhancing Knowledge, Wisdom and Creating a Better World
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With the excessive emphasis that modern PhD training places on the epistemological contribution of the thesis, a question that arises is: do PhD programmes help PhD students achieve philosophia – “love of wisdom”, or do the programmes just facilitate deepening and developing students’ knowledge? This paper challenges the modern approach to PhD training and by extension all academic research, and considers phronesiology, a wisdom-based approach to research design, to add value to traditional epistemic methodologies. In illustration, we use phronesiology and social practice wisdom principles to reflect on the merits of a recently completed empirical study of wise managerial decision-making. Through a reflective analysis, this paper demonstrates that phronesiology not only allows for contributions to knowledge, but can, as a matter of principle and choice, also increase research practitioner wisdom. In doing so, this may enable researchers to implement better and more comprehensive intellectual and practical outcomes that deal effectively with the economic, social, political, and environmental complexities of the contemporary world. Further, we argue that such a wisdom approach is more “practical” than further instrumentalizing PhD training. The paper offers a series of phronetic reflective questions for PhD researchers in social sciences, especially in organizational and management fields, to consider when designing and carrying out research.
9. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Jeananne Nicholls, Charles Ragland, Kurt Schimmel, Joseph F. Hair, Jr. The Relevance of Ethics, CSR, and Sustainability Topics in the Business School and Marketing Curricula: Dean and Department Head Opinions
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Based on a survey of deans and marketing department chairs, this study explores the business and marketing curriculum in the areas of ethics, corporate social responsibility (CSR), and sustainability. The findings indicate that there was limited support for providing students with an understanding of these topics, in believing the concepts provide a competitive advantage in the job market, or would be utilized by students at a later point in their education. Finally, the value placed on research in these areas was considerably less than on theory development or applied and pedagogical research.
teaching articles
10. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Brad A. Weaver, Stephen B. Castleberry Increasing Ethical and Legal Awareness Through Community Outreach Programs Utilizing White-Collar Prisoners
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A prisoner community outreach program, in which businesspeople and college business students have conversations with current white-collar inmates, has shown to be an effective tool in helping students and businesspeople realize the consequences of unethical behavior and breaking the law. A prisoner community awareness program is described and used as an example of how the practical application of positive principles can promote and empower ethical behavior, moral courage, and virtuousness. Audience’s reactions to this technique were positive, with listeners reporting heightened awareness and saliency of ethical and legal issues in business as well as a positive influence on their inclinations towards being an ethical member of society and businessperson.
11. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Jessica McManus Warnell, Joan Elise Dubinsky Business Students and Faculty on the Same Side of the Desk: Engaged Students and Collaborative Faculty Present Three New International Business Ethics Case Studies
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We describe the project narrative and resulting case studies as an example of a successful engagement in business ethics education for two reasons: 1) to present an example of a pedagogical approach that engages business students in thoughtful research and consideration of complex ethical issues through a case writing exercise in collaboration with faculty, and 2) to provide three new cases and teaching notes suitable for use in multidisciplinary courses. We present a description of our experience along with the fruits of our project—three new case studies accompanied by analyses and teaching notes—with the hope that other faculty will find the pedagogical approach inspiring and the cases stimulating and teachable. A group of undergraduate business students working with faculty members and practitioners helped research and write case studies on topics of the students’ choosing. The resulting case studies and teaching notes can be shared with faculty from diverse business disciplines who can readily incorporate them into their curricula. The pedagogical approach of collaborative research and writing offers an example of engaged student learning and hands-on teaching for other scholars and instructors.
12. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Casey J. Frid, Imran Chowdhury, Claudia G. Green An Experiential Field Study in Social Entrepreneurship
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Research has shown social entrepreneurs are less likely to abandon their efforts when they develop skills to operate in situations where both social and economic demands must be balanced. However, students may have difficulty grasping the process by which such skills are acquired. They may also have only a vague understanding of how these skills are applied during both the creation and operation of new social ventures. This paper presents a theoretical and practical approach to teaching new venture creation and stakeholder management vis-à-vis the specific actions and behaviors undertaken by social entrepreneurs. During a 10-day, experiential field study, students personally engage social entrepreneurs to understand how they manage the oft-conflicting demands of financial, organizational, community, and environmental stakeholders. The objective is for students to discover the process of new venture creation and management. The field study itself is a process of self-directed, interactive discovery whereby students develop and administer an interview protocol, observe an entrepreneur operating his or her venture, and write a case study addressing a particular challenge in the area of stakeholder management and social entrepreneurship. After reviewing the literature on education in social entrepreneurship and experiential learning, this paper describes how to implement the exercise. Learning outcomes from student interviews and the case study are discussed.
13. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Joseph M. Goebel, Manoj Athavale Business Ethics Through the Medium of Film
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We present an inventory of business ethics-related content to supplement and reinforce classroom education. The 23 films and documentaries introduced here allow the instructor to illustrate ethical issues in a manner which resonates with students. While sixteen of these selections involve fictitious plots, three selections (The Corporation, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, and Inside Job) are documentaries, and four selections (Barbarians at the Gate, Rogue Trader, The Pursuit of Happyness, and Too Big to Fail) are based on a dramatization of actual events. For each selection, we present a contextual synopsis and leading questions to help instructors demonstrate the existence of ethical issues so that students may gain a better understanding of the need for ethical behavior and practices in business. We also categorize various ethical breaches by functional business areas.
14. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Belinda Gibbons, Mario Fernando, Trevor Spedding Teaching and Learning Responsible Decision-Making in Business: A Qualitative Research Evaluation of a Simulation-Based Approach
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Practitioner and academic literature document serious concerns about the current approach to business higher education. Two key issues frequently noted are the silo disciplinary focus and the lack of exposure to responsible decision-making. Scholars and practitioners have proposed that the issues with the current undergraduate business education approach warrant the rethinking of traditional business teaching and learning models. This study proposes an alternate to teaching and learning responsible decision-making in undergraduate business education and reports the findings on the implementation of a web-based simulation using a systems approach to teaching and learning responsible decision-making. Using teaching observations and student reflections surveys, this paper explains the impact of this teaching approach on final-year undergraduate business students. The key findings suggest that a web-based simulation using a holistic systems approach to teach responsible decision-making using collaborative engagement fosters a valuable and unique student learning experience.
15. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
A. Erin Bass, Erin G. Pleggenkuhle-Miles The Tower Building Challenge: Introducing Stakeholder Management to MBA Students
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The ability to consider and analyze different stakeholder interests is a skill required of today’s business students. This paper describes a 35-minute experiential exercise using Tinkertoys® or Legos® to demonstrate and reinforce the concept of stakeholder management. The exercise, the Tower Building Challenge (TBC), is targeted toward classes in business ethics, strategy, or decision-making and requires students to work in groups to build a tower with the underpinning challenge that each group member has a different interest in how the tower should be built. Student feedback reflects on the difficulty of satisfying all stakeholders when making business decisions, the importance of making the interests of stakeholders transparent to enhance cooperation and the effectiveness of the decision-making process, and the need for stakeholder management when considering business decisions that impact stakeholders. Following this experiential exercise, students’ preliminary understanding presents an opportunity for a deeper discussion of stakeholder management. Specifically, students are prompted to consider stakeholder interests as joint, rather than opposed, when engaged in stakeholder management.
16. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Walter P. Jarvis, Danielle M. Logue Cultivating Moral-Relational Judgement in Business Education: The Merits and Practicalities of Aristotle’s Phronesis
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In this paper we reflect on the question “what do we mean by teaching ‘business ethics’ at all?” In response we suggest that phronesis - a values-based disposition integrating practical and affective dimensions of practical knowledge - warrants consideration in addressing the topic of ethics but more broadly in legitimising university-based management education in the face of widespread public trust deficit in business and management education. In this paper we consider the Aristotelian origins of phronesis, including its distinctive connection to emotion and moral imagination, and apply a phronesis-based approach to postgraduate management education, providing illustrations of its practical usage. In doing so, we argue this goes beyond thinking of ‘business ethics’ as a stand-alone subject in business education, and instead provides management educators a framework within which to cultivate graduate capabilities in moral-relational judgement and a profession-like praxis. Doing so would help - post Global Financial Crisis - to ameliorate justifiable loss of public trust and confidence in university-based management qualifications.
17. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Alexander T. Jackson, Mathias J. Simmons, Bradley J. Brummel, Aaron C. Entringer Appropriate Training Should Turn Ethical Reasoning into Ethical Practice
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The prevalence of ethics training in organizations rose from 50% in 2003 to 76% in 2011 (Ethics Resource Center 2012). This paper reviews the current state of ethics training in organizations and proposes a new conceptual model for designing effective ethics training programs based on Rest’s (1986) model of ethical decision-making. We argue that it is not the content of ethics training that fails to produce ethical behavior; it is the method by which ethics training is delivered. Most organizations utilize training methods designed to disseminate information or facilitate ethical dilemma recognition. Few organizations utilize methods that allow for trainees to actually practice making an ethical decision. We argue that a comprehensive approach to ethics training should be used, so trainees may practice all aspects of making an ethical decision. This practice should then enhance transfer of ethics training to the job. We conclude with suggestions for how research could be conducted to empirically support these arguments and inform ethics training method choices.
case studies (with accompanying teaching notes)
18. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Sonia J. Toson The Force-Fed Proposal: Exclusion of Shareholder Proposals from Corporate Proxy Materials under SEC Rule 14a-8(c)(5)
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In 2012, Peter Lovenheim invested in a promising new company, Iroquois Brands. Subsequent to investing, he learned that the company was a distributor of the French delicacy, pâté de foie gras. As an animal rights activist, Lovenheim was aware of the animal cruelty methods used to produce pâté de foie gras. In an effort to bring awareness to the issue and ideally halt the corporation’s distribution of the product, Lovenheim crafted several strategic shareholder proposals, and ultimately, in March 2015, filed a lawsuit against Iroquois. Unique in that it is written from the perspective of the Judge deciding the case, this case asks students to balance the needs of the corporation with the rights of shareholder activists. Based on a landmark court decision, the case demonstrates the complexities faced by contemporary socially responsible enterprises attempting to strike the elusive balance between ethical responsibility and the requirements of the law.
19. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Shafik Bhalloo, Kathleen Burke Overworked and Underpaid: The Plight of One Hapless Paralegal
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Tracy has a new job, a stable paycheque, and a new lease on life in a very tight job market. As a new paralegal, just six months into her position at a law firm supporting two very busy personal injury lawyers, Tracy’s workload and pace demands that she regularly works after hours. Her overtime, however, does not show up on her paycheque. She knows other firms pay their employees for overtime, but in her law firm, overtime is expected and unpaid. The Employment Standards Act requires employees to be compensated for overtime hours, but making a formal complaint would notify Tracy’s employer of her complaint and may expose her to retaliatory action. Tracy wants to be fairly compensated for her work, but there may be hidden costs to exposing her firm’s practices.
20. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 13
Thomas P. Corbin Jr. The Case of the Crooked Case Worker
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Ethics practice is both relative and situational. Perhaps there is an area of no greater demonstration of these realities than where an organization, be it a public governmental entity and/or a quasi-governmental entity with government contracts has the duty of care owed to a vulnerable constituency as well as to other community stakeholders. These agencies have the public trust as well as the ethical caretaking concerns to master. In the following fact scenario and discussion, one would consider a situation where the care of the vulnerable constituency is the paramount concern and the facilitation of that care is also in question. Human Resource and leadership teams need to be cognizant of not only impropriety of members within their organization but also the appearance of impropriety as well. The following case study attempts to put into perspective the need for managers and HR representatives to monitor practice and perception of ethical behavior.