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Journal cover: Competitiveness Review

Competitiveness Review

ISSN: 1059-5422

Online from: 1991

Subject Area: International Business

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Dimensionality of business ethics in China

Document Information:
Title:Dimensionality of business ethics in China
Author(s):Marc Sardy, (Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida, USA), J. Mark Munoz, (Millikin University, Decatur, Illinois, USA), James Jianmin Sun, (Renmin University of China, Beijing, China), Ilan Alon, (Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida, USA)
Citation:Marc Sardy, J. Mark Munoz, James Jianmin Sun, Ilan Alon, (2010) "Dimensionality of business ethics in China", Competitiveness Review, Vol. 20 Iss: 1, pp.6 - 30
Keywords:Business ethics, China, Factor analysis
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/10595421011019948 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the ethical dimensions in China. It reviews the extant business ethics literature on China, collects data on ethical conduct from a large Chinese university, and analyzes the data to examine emerging trends.

Design/methodology/approach – Factor analysis and multidimensional scaling (MDS) are applied to an established survey instrument after reliability is confirmed.

Findings – Principal-components factor analysis uncovers six main factors. MDS further reduces the explanatory variables into four ethical dimensions, while increasing the number of useable observations. These four dimensions are then correlated with some demographic and psychographic variables. Results reveal four quadrants with different characteristics: Quadrant I “Unsympathetic, ethically challenged, self centered” have lower grade-point index (GPA); Quadrant II “Ethically challenged, other directed” have higher GPA, watch more TV, and are more likely to be female; Quadrant III “Community orientation, ethically centered” are more likely to be female with higher class ranking and Quadrant IV “Challenge avoidance, controlling, religious” are more likely to have a lower GPA and lower level of religiosity.

Research limitations/implications – Inferences from this paper may be limited to the sample group. Further expansion of the paper may suggest additional insights.

Originality/value – Ethics is often ignored in China's business education. While well researched in the USA, this topic is rarely studied in China. This is of concern to businesses looking for managers in the Chinese market and for individuals and researchers who want a framework to better understand ethical dimensions of Chinese management.

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