Moral Disengagement at Work: A Review and Research Agenda

Journal of Business Ethics 167 (3):535-570 (2020)
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Abstract

Originally conceptualized by Bandura as the process of cognitive restructuring that allows individuals to disassociate with their internal moral standards and behave unethically without feeling distress, moral disengagement has attracted the attention of management researchers in recent years. An increasing body of research has examined the factors which lead people to morally disengage and its related outcomes in the workplace. However, the conceptualization of moral disengagement, how it should be measured, the manner in which it develops, and its influence on work outcomes are areas of continued debate among researchers. In this article, we undertake a systematic review of research on moral disengagement in the workplace and develop a comprehensive research agenda that highlights opportunities for theoretical and empirical advancement of the literature.

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Michael Cohen
Hebrew College