The Mediating Role of Anticipated Guilt in Consumers' Ethical Decision-Making

Journal of Business Ethics 69 (3):269 - 288 (2006)

In this paper, we theorize that the anticipation of guilt plays an important role in ethically questionable consumer situations. We propose an ethical decision-making framework incorporating anticipated guilt as partial mediator between consumers' ethical beliefs (anteceded by ethical ideology) and intentions. In the first study, we compared several models using structural equation modeling and found empirical support for our research model. A second experiment was set up to illustrate how these new insights may be applied to prevent consumers from taking advantage of the seller. Results showed that enhancing the anticipation of guilt (by making the interpersonal consequences of the unethical act more salient) increased consumers' ethical intentions, controlling for ethical beliefs. Together these two studies might have important theoretical and managerial contributions
Keywords Philosophy   Quality of Life Research   Management   Economic Growth   Ethics
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-006-9090-9
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The Emotions.Nico H. Frijda - 1986 - Cambridge University Press.

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