Cultural insights to justice: A theoretical perspective through a subjective lens [Book Review]

Journal of Business Ethics 46 (2):187-199 (2003)
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Distributive, procedural, and interactional justice are constructs that are increasingly being recognized as important factors that affect individual perceptions in the workplace environment. This paper presents a theoretical perspective that suggests that justice is perceived through a subjective lens that consists of individualized beliefs and proposes that cultural attributes and demographic characteristics play an integral part in determining the perception of justice. The distinctions between these three constructs are presented in context with the core beliefs of individual employees – affected by a multitude of perceptual and demographic factors that we briefly identify herein. Based on the theoretical perspective, an instrument that measures the constructs of justice as perceived by individuals was developed. With a focus on justice within the business setting, hypotheses about attitudes related to justice were tested. Survey results confirm that the three constructs of justice are distinct but correlated. Significant differences were found in the perceptions of African-American respondents with regard to procedural justice. Although the empirical findings do not support all the hypotheses, this research highlights the need for further development of measures to assess the perception of justice in business settings and at an applied level, underscores the importance of recognizing cultural attributes and demographic characteristics in understanding how justice is perceived



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Cam Caldwell
Dixie College