Research Companion to Ethical Behavior in Organizations

Research Companion to Ethical Behavior in Organizations

Constructs and Measures

Elgar original reference

Edited by Bradley R. Agle, David W. Hart, Jeffery A. Thompson and Hilary M. Hendricks

Compiling empirical work from management and social science disciplines, the Research Companion to Ethical Behavior in Organizations provides an entry point for academic researchers and compliance officers interested in measuring the moral dimensions of individuals. Accessible to newcomers but geared toward academics, this detailed book catalogs the varied and nuanced constructs used in behavioral ethics, along with measures that assess those constructs. With its cross-disciplinary focus and expert commentary, a varied collection of learned scholars bring essential studies into one volume, creating a resource that promises to enhance the burgeoning field of behavioral ethics.

Chapter 4: Values and attitudes

James D. Carlson, Rachael Dailey Goodwin and Lori L. Wadsworth

Subjects: business and management, business ethics and trust, business leadership, research methods in business and management


The implications of individual values and attitudes for human behavior has been of concern to researchers in many disciplines of the social sciences. Anthropologists, sociologists, and psychologists, among others, have used values and attitudes constructs and measures to further their respective lines of inquiry (e.g., Braithwaite and Scott, 1991; Ajzen, 2001; Schwartz, 1992). The ongoing attention these constructs receive speaks to their utility in explaining a wide variety of social phenomena. In this chapter, we discuss the values and attitudes constructs most salient to the study of business ethics. As might be expected, this subset of the literature is still relatively broad and fairly diverse. From highlighting more ubiquitous values and attitudes (e.g. Schwartz et al., 2012) to those that differ from culture to culture (e.g., Spini, 2003), to those that bear directly on ethical behavior (e.g., attitudes toward competitive bluffing, Lewicki and Robinson, 1998), what we present in this chapter is intended to increase researcher awareness of the variety of attitudes and values constructs that have been proposed and measured. Unlike some constructs in the business ethics literature, values and attitudes are decades-old. While the 1950s and 1960s were periods of considerable discussion and debate for how to best conceptualize values and attitudes, definitions have generally coalesced.

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