An Examination of the Layers of Workplace Influences in Ethical Judgments: Whisteblowing Likelihood and Perserverance in Public Accounting

Posted: 2 Jul 2013

See all articles by Eileen Zalkin Taylor

Eileen Zalkin Taylor

North Carolina State University

Mary B. Curtis

University of North Texas

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

We employ a Layers of Workplace Influence theory to guide our study of whistleblowing among public accounting audit seniors. Specifically, we examine professional commitment, organizational commitment versus colleague commitment (locus of commitment), and moral intensity of the unethical behavior on two measures of reporting intentions: likelihood of reporting and perseverance in reporting. We find that moral intensity relates to both reporting intention measures. In addition, while high levels of professional identity increase the likelihood that an auditor will initially report an observed violation, the auditor’s commitment to the organization drives perseverance in reporting. Results may assist organizations and researchers in their understanding of antecedents to whistleblowing as a form of corporate governance and of the effect of these antecedents on whistleblowing perseverance.

Keywords: ethics, moral intensity, organizational commitment, professional identify, whistleblowing

Suggested Citation

Taylor, Eileen Zalkin and Curtis, Mary B., An Examination of the Layers of Workplace Influences in Ethical Judgments: Whisteblowing Likelihood and Perserverance in Public Accounting (2009). Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 93, No. 1, 2010, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2288136

Eileen Zalkin Taylor (Contact Author)

North Carolina State University ( email )

Campus Box 8113
Nelson Hall
Raleigh, NC 27695-8113
United States
919-513-2476 (Phone)

Mary B. Curtis

University of North Texas ( email )

1155 Union Circle, #305219
Denton, TX 76203
United States
940.565.4366 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.coba.unt.edu/acct/faculty/curtis/

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