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Author Jordan, Jennifer
Title Business experience and moral awareness: When less may be more
book jacket
Descript 180 p
Note Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 66-03, Section: B, page: 1784
Director: Robert J. Sternberg
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Yale University, 2005
This dissertation investigates the relationship between business experience and moral awareness. It examines if business practitioners will be poorer than practitioners in non-business domains at recognizing the moral issues contained in a complex business-related dilemma and presents three hypotheses for why this may be the case. These hypotheses include (1) the tendency for business practitioners to selectively encode the strategic, as opposed to the moral issues in a dilemma, (2) the tendency for business practitioners to become entrenched in problem-solving strategies that place the importance of strategic issues above the importance of moral issues, and (3) business practitioners' greater susceptibilities to the fallacies of thinking, which include believing that the world centers around oneself, that one is all knowing, all powerful, invulnerable to negative events, and that even the worst events will have positive outcomes (Sternberg, 2002). This relationship is examined through a series of three studies. Pre-study 1 develops a measure of the fallacies of thinking, Pre-study 2 develops a measure of moral awareness, and the Main Study compares the moral awareness, susceptibility to the fallacies of thinking, and memory for and comprehension of moral- versus strategic-related issues of 86 business practitioners and 61 non-business practitioners. Results of the Main Study reveal that in comparison with non-business practitioners, business practitioners demonstrate greater awareness of strategic, as opposed to moral issues, answer fewer questions related to moral issues correctly, require more time to respond to questions related to moral issues, and have a greater susceptibility to the fallacies of thinking. These findings suggest that business practitioners may possess a poorer awareness of moral issues because their practice and training primes them to focus on the strategic components of a business situation at the expense of the moral components. It also presents suggestions for increasing business practitioners' moral awareness, including training to broaden their business schema to include moral- and ethical-related issues. At a time when business ethics are at the forefront of the American conscious, research such as this offers the possibility of finding ways to ameliorate the perceptual chasm between the goals of the marketplace and a moral-related focus
School code: 0265
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 66-03B
Subject Psychology, Social
Business Administration, Management
Psychology, Industrial
Alt Author Yale University
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