The Impact of Normative Influence and Locus of Control on Ethical Judgments and Intentions: a Cross-Cultural Comparison

Journal of Business Ethics 68 (2):113-132 (2006)

The study extends the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) in a cross-cultural setting, incorporating ethical judgments and locus of control in a comparison of Taiwanese and US businesspersons. A self-administered survey of 698 businesspersons from the US and Taiwan examined several hypothesized differences. Results indicate that while Taiwanese respondents have a more favorable attitude toward a requested bribe than US counterparts, and are less likely to view it as an ethical issue, their higher locus externality causes ethical judgments and behavioral intentions to conform to normative influences of in groups and superiors. In the Taiwanese sample, locus externality effectively functions as a countervailing pressure against the unethical behavior in the scenario. No such effect is found in the US sample. A path model fitted to the data shows that locus internals exhibit more consistency among attitudes, judgments, and behavioral intentions than locus externals. Implications for managers and researchers are discussed, and suggestions and precautions for development of efficacy-enhancement programs are offered.
Keywords cross-cultural  ethical judgments  ethical intentions  normative influence  locus of control  marketing  perceived efficacy
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-006-9043-3
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