The implications of an organization's structure on whistleblowing

Journal of Business Ethics 20 (4):315 - 326 (1999)
Abstract
Previous studies investigating reports of corporate or individual wrongdoing have failed to examine the effects of an organization's structure upon the decision to blow the whistle. This paper suggests that an organization's structure may perform a significant role in the decision to report versus not report an observed wrongdoing. Five organizational structures (that is, centralized, matrix, horizontal, hybrid, and divisional) were examined in regards to their effectiveness in encouraging or discouraging observers of unethical conduct channels for reporting such behavior. Discussion and implications are provided.
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