Journal of Business Ethics 118 (3):515-527 (2013)

Abstract
Why do otherwise well-intentioned managers make decisions that have negative social or environmental consequences? To answer this question, the authors combine the literature on construal level theory with the compromise effect to explore the circumstances that lead to seemingly unethical decision-making. The results of two studies suggest that the degree to which managers make high-risk tradeoffs is highly influenced by how they mentally represent the decision context. The authors find that managers are more likely to make seemingly unethical tradeoffs when psychological distance is high (rather than low) and when they are forced to choose between competing alternatives. However, when given the option not to choose, managers better reflect on the consequences of each alternative, and thus become more likely to choose options with less risk of negative consequences. The results suggest that simply offering managers the option not to choose may reduce psychological distance and help organizations avoid seemingly unethical decision-making
Keywords Compromise effect  Construal level theory  Decision framing  Risk  Ethics
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-012-1606-x
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References found in this work BETA

Construal-Level Theory of Psychological Distance.Yaacov Trope & Nira Liberman - 2010 - Psychological Review 117 (2):440-463.
Business codes of multinational firms: What do they say?Muel Kaptein - 2004 - Journal of Business Ethics 50 (1):13-31.
Temporal Construal.Yaacov Trope & Nira Liberman - 2003 - Psychological Review 110 (3):403-421.

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