David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Business Ethics 111 (4):519-539 (2012)
A growing body of theory has focused on privacy as being contextually defined, where individuals have highly particularized judgments about the appropriateness of what, why, how, and to whom information flows within a specific context. Such a social contract understanding of privacy could produce more practical guidance for organizations and managers who have employees, users, and future customers all with possibly different conceptions of privacy across contexts. However, this theoretical suggestion, while intuitively appealing, has not been empirically examined. This study validates a social contract approach to privacy by examining whether and how privacy norms vary across communities and contractors. The findings from this theoretical examination support the use of contractual business ethics to understand privacy in research and in practice. As predicted, insiders to a community had significantly different understandings of privacy norms as compared to outsiders. In addition, all respondents held different privacy norms across hypothetical contexts, thereby suggesting privacy norms are contextually understood within a particular community of individuals. The findings support two conclusions. First, individuals hold different privacy norms without necessarily having diminished expectations of privacy. Individuals differed on the factors they considered important in calculating privacy expectations, yet all groups had robust privacy expectations across contexts. Second, outsiders have difficulty in understanding the privacy norms of a particular community. For managers and scholars, this renders privacy expectations more difficult to identify at a distance or in deductive research. The findings speak directly to the needs of organizations to manage a diverse set of privacy issues across stakeholder groups
|Keywords||Privacy Social contract theory Contractual business ethics Factorial vignette methodology Survey|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Michael Walzer (1995). Thick and Thin: Moral Argument at Home and Abroad. Philosophy 70 (273):472-475.
Thomas W. Dunfee (2006). A Critical Perspective of Integrative Social Contracts Theory: Recurring Criticisms and Next Generation Research Topics. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 68 (3):303 - 328.
N. Craig Smith, Sally S. Simpson & Chun-Yao Huang (2007). Why Managers Fail to Do the Right Thing: An Empirical Study of Unethical and Illegal Conduct. Business Ethics Quarterly 17 (4):633-667.
Susan J. Winter, Antonis C. Stylianou & Robert A. Giacalone (2004). Individual Differences in the Acceptability of Unethical Information Technology Practices: The Case of Machiavellianism and Ethical Ideology. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 54 (3):279 - 301.
Ben Wempe (2005). In Defense of a Self-Disciplined, Domain-Specific Social Contract Theory of Business Ethics. Business Ethics Quarterly 15 (1):113-135.
Citations of this work BETA
Kirsten Martin (forthcoming). Understanding Privacy Online: Development of a Social Contract Approach to Privacy. Journal of Business Ethics.
Wei Zhou & Selwyn Piramuthu (forthcoming). Information Relevance Model of Customized Privacy for IoT. Journal of Business Ethics.
Similar books and articles
Elin Palm (2009). Privacy Expectations at Work—What is Reasonable and Why? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 12 (2):201 - 215.
Irene Pollach (2011). Online Privacy as a Corporate Social Responsibility: An Empirical Study. Business Ethics 20 (1):88-102.
Alan Rubel (2011). The Particularized Judgment Account of Privacy. Res Publica 17 (3):275-290.
Kirsten E. Martin (2011). TMI (Too Much Information). Business and Professional Ethics Journal 30 (1-2):1-32.
Ferdinand David Schoeman (ed.) (1984). Philosophical Dimensions of Privacy: An Anthology. Cambridge University Press.
Lars Øystein Ursin (2008). Biobank Research and the Right to Privacy. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (4):267-285.
Steven Davis (2009). Is There a Right to Privacy? Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (4):450-475.
Richard Arneson (2000). Egalitarian Justice Versus the Right to Privacy? Social Philosophy and Policy 17 (02):91-.
Gordon Hull, Heather Richter Lipford & Celine Latulipe (2011). Contextual Gaps: Privacy Issues on Facebook. [REVIEW] Ethics and Information Technology 13 (4):289-302.
Luciano Floridi (2006). Four Challenges for a Theory of Informational Privacy. Ethics and Information Technology 8 (3):109-119.
Helen Nissenbaum (1997). Toward an Approach to Privacy in Public: Challenges of Information Technology. Ethics and Behavior 7 (3):207 – 219.
Thomas R. Shaw (2003). The Moral Intensity of Privacy: An Empirical Study of Webmasters' Attitudes. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 46 (4):301 - 318.
Steve Matthews (2008). Privacy, Separation, and Control. The Monist 91 (1):130-150.
Added to index2012-03-31
Total downloads9 ( #254,415 of 1,726,249 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #369,877 of 1,726,249 )
How can I increase my downloads?