Business and especially marketing ethics have come to the forefront in recent years. While consumers have been surveyed regarding their perceptions of ethical business and marketing practices, research has been minimal with regard to their perceptions of ethical consumer practices. In addition, few studies have examined the ethical beliefs of elderly consumers even though they are an important and rapidly growing segment. This research investigates the relationship between Machiavellianism, ethical ideology and ethical beliefs for elderly consumers. The results indicate that (...) elderly consumers, while generally being more ethical than younger consumers, are diverse in their eithical beliefs. (shrink)
Business and Marketing ethics have come to the forefront in recent years. While consumers have been surveyed regarding their perceptions of ethical business and marketing practices, research has been minimal with regard to their ethical beliefs and ideologies. In addition, no study has examined the ethical beliefs of Austrian consumers even though Austria maintains a unique status of political neutrality, nonalignment, stability, economic prosperity and geographical proximity to the East- and West-European countries. This research investigates the relationship between Machiavellianism, ethical (...) ideology and ethical beliefs of Austrian consumers. The results indicate that Austrian consumers are mostly situationists who, while rejecting moral rules, judge the ethics of a behavior by the consequences and outcomes of the situation. (shrink)
The ethical climate in Turkey is beset by ethical problems. Bribery, environmental pollution, tax frauds, deceptive advertising, production of unsafe products, and the ethical violations that involved politicians and business professionals are just a few examples. The purpose of this study is to compare and contrast the ethical beliefs of American and Turkish consumers using the Ethical Position Questionnaire (EPQ) of Forsyth (1980), the Machiavellianism scale, and the Consumer Ethical Practices of Muncy and Vitell questionnaire (MVQ). A sample of 376 (...) subjects that consists of American consumers (n = 188) and Turkish consumers (n = 199) was used to compare the ethical beliefs and practices of the two samples. The MANOVA results for the two nationality groups found that five out of six criterion variables differed between the two groups. The implications of this study are intended to assist marketers to develop strategies that suit a particular market and lessen their risk of entry. (shrink)
Research investigating the consumer's ethical beliefs, ideologies and orientation has been limited. Additionally, despite the repeated call in the literature for cross cultural research, virtually no studies have examined the ethical beliefs and ideologies of consumers from cultures other than those in North America. This study partially fills this gap in the literature by investigating the ethical beliefs, preferred ethical ideology, and degree of Machiavellianism of consumers from Egypt and Lebanon. The results indicate that consumers in Lebanon, which has been (...) torn by civil unrest and terrorism, tend to be more Machiavellian, less idealistic, and more relativistic than their Egyptian counterparts. Additionally, the Lebanese consumers tend to be more accepting of questionable consumer practices. (shrink)
This study explores the ethical ideol-ogies and ethical beliefs of African American consumers using the Forsyth ethical position questionnaire (EPQ) and the Muncy-Vitell consumer ethics questionnaire (MVQ). The two dimensions of the EPQ (i.e., idealism and relativism) were the independent constructs and the four dimensions of the MVQ (i.e., illegal, active, passive and no harm) were the dependent variables. In addition, this paper explores the consumer ethics of African Americans across four demographic factors (i.e., age, education, gender, and marital status). (...) A sample of 315 African American consumers was used to explore these relationships. Results confirmed that consumers who score high on the idealism scale are more likely to reject questionable consumer activities, but there was no relationship between relativism and consumers' rejection of questionable activities. Older, more educated and married consumers rejected questionable activities more than younger, less educated and single consumers. Gender did not have any significant relationship to consumers' ethical orientation. (shrink)
This study was designed to examine the determinants of and differences between the ethical beliefs of two groups of Japanese students in religious and secular universities. Multiple regression analysis revealed that students of the Japanese religious university perceived that young, male, relativistic, and opportunistic students tended to behave less ethically than did older, female, and idealistic students. Students of the Japanese secular university perceived that male, achievement-oriented, and opportunistic students tended to behave less ethically than did female and experience-oriented students. (...) Opportunism was found to be one of the most important determinants in explaining misconduct. Multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) and multiple discriminant analysis (MDA) revealed that students of the Japanese secular university tended to score higher on achievement and humanism, and lower on theism and positivism than did students of the Japanese religious university. In addition, students of the Japanese secular university were somewhat more sensitive to academic dishonesty practices than were students of the Japanese religious university. (shrink)
A vast majority of marketing theory and research has focused on relativism and idealism in order to understand ethical behavior. However, making ethical assessments that in turn influence behavior is much more complicated than it appears. One of the most important developments in contemporary philosophy has been the renewed interest in epistemic virtue. Epistemologists contend that belief is an ethical process that is susceptible to the intellectual virtue or vice of one’s own life and personal experiences. Open-mindedness, curiosity, careful thinking, (...) creativity, and intellectual courage are the foundations of epistemic virtues. Closed-mindedness, intellectual overconfidence, unimaginativeness, intellectual conformity, and wishful thinking are among epistemic vices. The purpose of this investigation is to introduce epistemology to marketing ethics by linking it to personal moral philosophies (idealism and relativism) and optimism to explain various ethically challenging organizational behaviors. The items of epistemology were developed and pretested by the lead author of this study. Structural equations (LISREL) analyses found that epistemic virtues and vices are better predictors of ethical behavior than were personal moral philosophies (idealism and relativism), and their influence on mild and severe levels of unethical behaviors was enhanced by the moderator variable, optimism. Implications are designed to develop suggestions for improving ethical behavior in the workplace. (shrink)
Past research has examined the ethical judgments of consumers in the U.S., but few studies have investigated such attitudes in foreign-market settings. The current study compares ethical attitudes of consumers in two countries (Ireland and Lebanon) which share a cultural similarity of ongoing war and terrorism. The findings reveal that both cultures exhibit low sensitivity to ethical issues. Furthermore, the findings show that the Irish consumers are less sensitive to consumer ethical practices, less idealistic, more relativistic, and more Machiavellian than (...) Lebanese consumers. The authors recommend that other researchers need to further investigate this perplexing issue because ethics is a research topic which often discourages survey respondents to be candid. (shrink)
This paper explores attitudes regarding tax evasion and the relationship between personal moral philosophy and such attitudes in a weak tax environment. The results confirm the multidimensionality of tax evasion attitudes. Idealism was negatively related to self-interest tax evasion attitudes while relativism was positively related to such attitudes. Idealism was also positively related to tax evasion attitudes stemming from concerns about the justice of the tax system. Idealists in a weak tax environment seemingly go through a cognitive reframing process where (...) they recognize that the tax system is unfair, and accordingly tax evasion is a way to serve a different moral absolute, that is of equity, rather than another different moral absolute, which is fulfilling obligations to governments. The results are also explained in light of the suggested low moral intensity of tax evasion among respondents. Policy implications are presented. (shrink)
Relationships with one's employees, co-workers, or superiors create ethical dilemmas. Employees' judgments and ethical perceptions have been extensively studied in Western cultures, but not in developing countries. The purpose of this investigation is to examine employees' self-reported work-related ethics and compare them to their perceptions of co-workers' and top managements' along various morally challenging situations in three developing countries' organizations. Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Oman, known as the Gulf countries, were selected as the research setting - and provided the sampling (...) frame - for this study. The results suggest that respondents perceived all ethically challenging situations as unethical and had significant differences among themselves regarding the ethical perceptions of self, as compared to perceptions of peers', and top managements'. Discussion of the results and implications are provided. (shrink)
This paper represents the responses of 377 pharmacists to a mail survey examining their views concerning ethical conflicts and practices. Besides identifying the sources of ethical conflicts, pharmacists were asked how ethical standards have changed over the last 10 years as well as the factors influencing these changes. Conclusions and implications are outlined and future research needs are examined.
The process of making ethical judgments is much more complex than studying only personal moral philosophy variables (idealism and relativism). The renewed interest in epistemic values (virtue and vice epistemology) in contemporary philosophy has shown significant relevance to understanding ethical behavior and such values may be better predictors than studying only idealism and relativism. The purpose of this exploratory study is to examine employees’ personal moral philosophies, optimism, epistemic values, and various organizational unethical practices as compared to their managers. We (...) used Rawwas’ items of epistemology in this study. The sample consisted of 262 managers and employees. The results revealed that managers were more sensitive to organizational unethical practices, scored less on epistemic vices, less on absolutism, and more on exceptionalism than employees were. However, there was no difference between managers and employees related to moderate and minor unethical organizational practices, situationism, subjectivism, optimism, and epistemic virtues. We provided discussion of the results and implications. (shrink)
This paper reports the responses of 251 mental health care practitioners to a mail survey examining their views concerning ethical conflicts and practices within their work environments. Besides identifying the sources and types of conflicts they experience, respondents were asked how ethical standards have changed over the last 10 years as well as the factors influencing these changes. Conclusions and implications are outlined and future research needs are described.