Doing as they would do: How the perceived ethical preferences of third-party beneficiaries impact ethical decision-making


Journal Article

Although unethical behavior often benefits third-parties not directly complicit in the misconduct, not all beneficiaries welcome these ill-gotten benefits. We investigate whether actors consider the ethical preferences of potential beneficiaries or rely solely on their own ethical predispositions when making decisions that affect others. Three studies demonstrate that the perceived ethical preferences of these beneficiaries can substantially influence the likelihood that actors behave unethically on their behalves. These studies show that actors consider the ethical preferences of beneficiaries only when their own ethical disposition is outcome-based. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wiltermuth, SS; Bennett, VM; Pierce, L

Published Date

  • November 1, 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 122 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 280 - 290

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0749-5978

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.obhdp.2013.10.001

Citation Source

  • Scopus