Title

Clarity of ethical rules for open-minded discussion to resolve ethical issues in Chinese organizations

Document Type

Journal article

Source Publication

Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources

Publication Date

8-1-2010

Volume

48

Issue

2

First Page

185

Last Page

211

Keywords

China, Conflict, Constructive controversy, Ethical rules

Abstract

In critical incident interviews, 101 Chinese mainland employees each described a work-related occasion where ethical values were at stake. Case examples and structural equation analyses indicated that clearly understood ethical rules facilitated open-minded discussion of opposing views, i.e. constructive controversy, which in turn developed interactive justice, strengthened interpersonal relationships, and promoted confidence in future discussions. However, clarity about ethical rules and engagement in constructive controversy was perceived to have no substantive ethical impact. This result was interpreted as indicating that common understanding among employees about the content of the extant ethical rules combined with open-minded discussion of the rules does not necessarily lead to agreement that bringing behavior into alignment with the extant rules is necessarily the best moral solution, and as suggesting that using constructive controversy to develop ethical rules may be better than imposing them from the top.

DOI

10.1177/1038411110368466

Print ISSN

10384111

E-ISSN

17447941

Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2010 by Australian Human Resources Institute

Access to external full text or publisher's version may require subscription.

Full-text Version

Publisher’s Version

Recommended Citation

Snell, R. S., Tjosvold, D., & Wu, J. L. (2010). Clarity of ethical rules for open-minded discussion to resolve ethical issues in Chinese organizations. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources, 48(2), 185-211. doi: 10.1177/1038411110368466