Estimating the incidence of wrongdoing and whistle-blowing: Results of a study using randomized response technique [Book Review]

Journal of Business Ethics 14 (1):17 - 30 (1995)
Abstract
Student cheating and reporting of that cheating represents one form of organizational wrong-doing and subsequent whistle-blowing, in the context of an academic organization. Previous research has been hampered by a lack of information concerning the validity of survey responses estimating the incidence of organizational wrongdoing and whistle-blowing. An innovative method, the Randomized Response Technique (RRT), was used here to assess the validity of reported incidences of wrongdoing and whistle-blowing. Surprisingly, our findings show that estimates of these incidences did not vary significantly when RRT questionnaire results were compared to those obtained from standard surveys. In fact, a large number of business undergraduates admitted cheating while only a small percentage reported peers'' cheating when they observed it. These results should be sobering for managers and their implications are considered in some detail.
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