Ethics and Executives: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Japan, Taiwan, and the United States
International Business and Economics Research Journal
ISSN or ISBN
Globalization has facilitated the interaction of people from diverse cultures. As more firms now operate internationally, ethical issues tend to increase, and thus managers nowadays face more complicated situations that challenge their ability to reason morally. In the previous studies, cultural difference is often used to explain the ethical conflicts between home and host country. This research investigates the moral reasoning abilities of top-level business managers of three cultural groups—the U.S. and Japanese expatriate managers in Taiwan, and local Taiwanese managers. Kohlberg’s (1969, 1976, 1984b) theory of cognitive moral development (CMD) and Rest’s Defining Issues Test Version Two (DIT-2) were used to access the level of ethical reasoning of these business practitioners. Hofstede’s(2001) theory of cultural dimensions was used to describe differences among these managers. A DIT-2 survey packet was sent to 750 managerial and executive level employees at a variety of organizations in Taiwan.Results indicate that personal characteristics (gender, age, education level) and organizational factors (ethics code, ethical training) may not significantly affect one’s ethical perception. Conversely, cultural difference may be diminished and possible ethical convergence may appear through acculturation to local business environment
Huang, C.; Mujtaba, Bahaudin G.; Cavico, Frank J.; and Sims, R., "Ethics and Executives: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Japan, Taiwan, and the United States" (2006). HCBE Faculty Articles. 474.