Cultural Values, Utilitarian Orientation, and Ethical Decision Making: A Comparison of U.S. and Puerto Rican Professionals

Journal of Business Ethics 134 (2):263-279 (2016)
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Abstract

Using samples from the U.S. and Puerto Rico, we examine cross-cultural differences in cultural value dimensions, and relate these to act and rule utilitarian orientations, and ethical decision making of business professionals. Although these places share the same legal environment, culturally they are distinct. In addition to tests of between-group differences, a model in which utilitarian orientation mediates the influence of cultural values on ethical decisions was evaluated at the individual level of analysis. Results indicated national culture differences on three cultural values, but no between-group differences on utilitarian orientations and ethical decisions. Significant indirect effects were found; act utilitarian orientation mediated the effects of two values activity orientation and universalism on ethical decision making. Implications for international management practices and business ethics are discussed.

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