Business Ethics: A European Review                                                         Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012   ...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                    Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012paradigm...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                        Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012                    ...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                        Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012.......
Business Ethics: A European Review                                         Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012                   ...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                    Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012        ...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                        Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012nals were considered...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                          Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012and cultural envir...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                       Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012Concl...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                        Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012Appe...
Business Ethics: A European Review                                                    Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012Donaldso...
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Biz ethics euro2012

  1. 1. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012 Most cited business ethics publications: mapping the intellectual structure of business ethics studies in 2001–2008 Zhenzhong Ma1, Dapeng Liang2, Kuo-Hsun Yu3 and Yender Lee4 1. Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada 2. School of Management, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China 3. Department of Marketing and Logistics Management, Far East University, Tainan, Taiwan 4. College of Management, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan, Taiwan This study explores the research paradigms of contemporary business ethics research in 2001–2008. With citation data from the top two business ethics journals included in the Social Sciences Citation Index, this study conducts citation and co-citation analysis to identify the most important publications, scholars, and research themes in the business ethics area and then maps the intellectual structure of business ethics studies between 2001 and 2008. The results show that current business ethics studies cluster around four major research themes, including morality and social contract theory, ethical decision making, corporate social responsibility, and stakeholder theory. This study helps profile the invisible network of knowledge production in business ethics and provides important insights on current research paradigms of business ethics studies. Introduction social issues in business (in the 1960s), the rise of business ethics as an emerging field (in the 1970s), the Business ethics research grew out of religion’s inter- initial consolidation period (the first half of the est in ethics in business and management education’s 1980s), and the refinement and further development concern with social issues (De George 1987). While of business ethics (after 1985). the history of ethics in business is a long one, the Research on business ethics has since developed development of business ethics is brief, and some rapidly, yet no recent study has examined the status scholars even contend that business ethics is too of contemporary business ethics research, and thus, recent a phenomenon to have a history. De George it is not very clear how contemporary business ethics (1987) reviewed the development of business ethics in research has evolved, what the status of the present the 1980s, and his study showed that research on business ethics studies is, and what their research business ethics had experienced five different stages: paradigms are. The objective of this study is to ethics in business stage (prior to 1960), the rise of bridge this gap by exploring the changing research doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8608.2012.01652.x © 2012 The Authors Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 9600 Garsington Road, 286bs_bs_banner Oxford OX4 2DQ, UK and 350 Main St, Malden, MA 02148, USA
  2. 2. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012paradigms in business ethics studies in the 21st cited, documents and the intellectual structure of acentury (2001–2008) and to identify the intellectual given academic field using citation and co-citationstructure of different research topics and themes in analysis (Ma 2005, Ma et al. 2008). This model inte-the development of business ethics. In addition, an grates principles of citation and co-citation and theoverview of contemporary business ethics research is invisible nature of academic communication processa prerequisite for a better understanding of how to visualize connections between different knowledgebusiness ethics evolves and what the potential future nodes in a knowledge network. The INK model iden-research directions are in the business ethics field. tifies a set of interlinked invisible knowledge nodesThis study is to provide such an overview by represented by publications with their frequency ofmapping major research themes in business ethics citations and correlations between different publica-research in 2001–2008 and thus provides a useful tool tions that share similar subtopics. In this model, thefor scholars to conduct integrated studies on busi- total number of times each publication gets cited isness ethics. used to map their research paradigms. Comparing Research paradigms of a body of academic litera- with often used expert opinions or armchair schol-ture refer to the knowledge network embodied in ars’ assessment, the INK model is more objectivewritten and published literature that is not obviously and unobtrusive in mapping the changing researchobserved. A number of ways can be used to study paradigms as well as in evaluating contributions ofthis body of literature and its changing paradigms. different publications and scholars in a given field.The most popular is the simple literature review This study will follow this line of research and usewhere a highly subjective approach is used to struc- citation and co-citation analysis to explore theture earlier research. More objective and quantita- changing research paradigm in business ethicstive techniques have recently become popular when databases are available for such a purpose(Diodato 1994, Pilkington & Teichert 2006). Amongvarious quantitative methods developed in the last The changing research paradigms ofthree decades, citation and co-citation analysis is the business ethics researchearliest and the most commonly accepted method.While researchers from different fields practice citing Business ethics research deals with interrelated ques-in various ways and for various reasons, Chandy & tions of ethics and business to be untangled andWilliams (1994) contended that citations are the addressed within an overarching framework. It is theexplicit linkage between articles with common ele- study of morality and immorality as well as possiblements. For any academic discipline, researchers typi- justification of economic systems (De George 1987).cally cluster into informal networks that focus on The framework is not supplied by any ethical theorycommon questions in common ways (Price 1963), but by the systematic interdependence of the ques-and within these networks, one scholar’s thoughts tions, which can be approached from various philo-and results may be picked up by another (through sophical, theological, or other points of views. As acitation), extended, tested, and refined. Therefore, result, research on business ethics is enormous, and itthe process of exchange between members of these remains somehow unclear who is doing businessnetworks, revealed in patterns of citations, forms ethics research, what the major research topics are inresearch paradigms of the given field. the business ethics field, and what the prospects and While the citation process may be complicated, the needs in the current business ethics literature are. Tolaws of scientometrics show that hundreds or even answer these questions requires a literature overviewthousands of journal articles can produce only a few of business ethics studies.vital, accumulated cited documents (Cronin 1984), This study explored research paradigms of con-which makes the mapping of such a process possible. temporary business ethics studies between 2001 andRecently, scholars created a new term – the invisible 2008. The authors chose such a time period becausenetwork of knowledge (the INK model) to describe business ethics studies after 2001 represent the mostthe process of identifying the few vital, yet also most updated and probably also the most important© 2012 The AuthorsBusiness Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd 287
  3. 3. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012 .............................................................................research in the field of business ethics. Citation andco-citation analysis and social network analysis are Table 1: The most cited journals in business ethicsthe main methods for this study. With citation and in 2001–2008co-citation analysis, this study first identified data- Journals Number ofbases to be used, and then analyzed the data, fol- citationslowed by data mapping with social network analysis Journal of Business Ethics 7,849techniques. The results of social network analysis Academy of Management Review 2,241 Business Ethics Quarterly 1,613helped map the changing research paradigms of busi- Academy of Management Journal 1,173ness ethics studies and reveal the most important Journal of Applied Psychology 665research themes and their correlations. Journal of Marketing 599 In this study, the Social Sciences Citation Index Administrative Science Quarterly 570(SSCI) was used for analysis. SSCI is a widely used Journal of Personality and Social 503database, which includes citations published in over Psychology2,000 of the world’s leading social sciences scholarly Harvard Business Review 489journals covering more than 50 disciplines. Using Strategic Management Journal 487 Business and Society 453SSCI provided the most comprehensive and widely Business Ethics: A European Review 346accepted databases of business ethics publications. Accounting Organizations and Society 317Among the journals included in SSCI, Business Human Relations 312Ethics Quarterly (BEQ) and the Journal of Business Journal of Business Research 302Ethics (JBE) are arguably the most influential jour- Journal of Management 295nals publishing business ethics-related papers and California Management Review 288are thus used as the core sources for analysis. The Journal of Marketing Research 281advantage of using journals instead of key words to Business and Society Review 270 Journal of International Business Studies 250generate needed citation data is the ‘guaranteed .............................................................................quality’ of their published papers and their clearboundaries of what are acceptable methods andtopics of the field that are defined by editorial poli-cies of specific journals. In particular, this study using the Microsoft Excel package. The citationincluded all the publications in BEQ and JBE in analysis produced interesting background statistics,2001–2008, with BEQ, volume 18, issue 3 and JBE as shown in the following tables.volume 81, issue 2 as the most recent available pub- Table 1 lists the most cited journals in the field oflications when the data were collected. The final data business ethics in 2001–2008, among which JBE,included 1,935 (311 from BEQ and 1,624 from JBE) Academy of Management Review, BEQ, Academy ofjournal articles from the two journals, which further Management Journal, and Journal of Applied Psy-cited 79,667 publications as references. These journal chology are the top five most cited business ethicsarticles and cited references together formed the final journals, followed by Journal of Marketing anddata set used in this study. Administrative Sciences Quarterly. The ranking of JBE is higher than many prestigious management journals, such as the Academy of ManagementResults Review and the Academy of Management Journal, and the actual citation counts from the JBE are a lotCitation analysis larger than the rest of the journals in the list (itsCitation analysis is based on the assumption that citation counts are almost equal to the sum of theauthors cite papers they consider to be important to other nine journals’ total citations in the top 10 mostthe development of their research. To examine the cited journals). This result indicates JBE has provedinfluences of individual publications in the business itself the most influential, if not the best, journal inethics field, citation analysis was conducted for all of business ethics research. This also indicates thatthe 1,935 source documents with their citation data business ethics has developed into a somehow © 2012 The Authors288 Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
  4. 4. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012................................................................................................................................................................... Table 2: Top 10 most cited business ethics publications in 2001–2008Identification number Full citation index for documents Total citation 1 Jones TM, 1991, Acad Manage Rev, V16, P366 144 2 Freeman RE, 1984, Strategic Management 122 3 Donaldson T, 1995, Acad Manage Rev, V20, P65 119 4 Hunt SD, 1986, J Macromarketing Spr, P5 108 5 Friedman M, 1970, NY Times, 0913 99 6 Donaldson T, 1999, Ties Bind 91 7 Mitchell RK, 1997, Acad Manage Rev, V22, P853 78 8 Gilligan C, 1982, Different Voice 77 9 Trevino LK, 1986, Acad Manage Rev, V11, P601 7610 Carroll AB, 1979, Acad Manage Rev, V4, P497 72 ...................................................................................................................................................................fledged field that can support its own knowledge defining titles that have built the groundwork for thegeneration and dissemination, wherein JBE, together understanding of business ethics as a distinct phe-with BEQ, plays a leading role in supporting the nomenon, such as those dealing with ethicalcommunication process among business ethics schol- decision-making theories and with stakeholder theo-ars. That being said, readers are cautioned in inter- ries. In particular, two of Donaldson’s publicationspreting the results because the average number each were among the top six most cited publications, indi-journal publishes every year also affects its total cita- cating the prominent status of Donaldson in businesstions. The general pattern of the most cited journals ethics research. Tables 1 and 2 also reveal that closeshows that business ethics research in 2001–2008 fea- ties exist between business ethics research andtured business ethics-specific journals prominently, general management, business studies, and market-alongside general management journals, while a ing research.cluster of business studies, psychology, and market-ing specific journals is also evident. The most influential publications with the most Co-citation analysiscited scholars were also identified by their total Co-citation analysis involves recording the totalcounts of citation. As shown in Table 2, the most number of citations that a particular pair of docu-cited business ethics publication between 2001 and ments receives. The number of co-citations is inter-2008 was T. Jones’ (1991) paper ‘Ethics Decision preted as a measure of similarity of the two citedMaking by Individuals in Organizations: An Issue- documents. This approach is instrumental in group-Contingent Model’, followed by R. Freeman’s ings authors, topics, or methods and can help us(1984) book Strategic Management: A Stakeholder understand the way in which these clusters interre-Approach, and Donaldson & Preston’s (1995) paper late with each other (Pilkington & Liston-Heyes‘The Stakeholder Theory of the Corporation: Con- 1999). More specifically, co-citation analysis com-cepts, Evidence and Implications’ (see Table 2). piles co-citation counts in matrices and statisticallyTable 2 lists the top 10 most influential publications scales them to capture a snapshot at a distinct pointin the field of business ethics and their importance in in time of what is actually a changing and evolvingthe development of business ethics research (see the paradigm of knowledge generation (Small 1993).Appendix for a list of detailed citation data for the Co-citation data were tabulated for all the sourcetop 50 most cited publications). These publications documents in this study. Based on the total numbercollectively defined the research scope and boundary of citations, the most cited articles were identifiedof business ethics studies in 2001–2008. Examining (listed in the Appendix, with their total citations-Tables 1 and 2, readers notice that high citations are based rankings used as identification numbers), andoften associated with what can be termed field- then a co-citation matrix was built before a pictorial© 2012 The AuthorsBusiness Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd 289
  5. 5. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012 Figure 1: Network diagram of the core literature in business ethics studies 5 4 2 3 1map was drawn to describe correlations between dif- software suite UCINET, version 6.1, Analytic Tech-ferent articles. Many of the articles had very few nologies, Lexington, KY; Borgatti et al. 2002), thecitations, and therefore, they were either unlikely to graph of business ethics research was drawn as inhave had a significant impact on the development of Figure 1, which shows interlinks among the mostbusiness ethics research or were too new to have had cited publications. This graph shows only the linkstime to impact on the literature. To facilitate analy- with greater than or equal to nine co-citations in orderses and improve the probability of success, only to keep the diagram relatively uncluttered and easierarticles with at least 27 citations were kept in the final to interpret. Basically, a line between two particulardata set. In so doing, the procedures recommended publications indicates that these two publications areby White & Griffith (1981) were followed. cited together at least nine times. The thickness of the Social network analysis tools were used to graph lines represents the strength of co-citation ties and thethe relations in the co-citation matrix and identify the size of circles represents the number of citationsstrongest links and core areas of research in business received by each publication as listed in the Appendix.ethics (Pilkington & Teichert 2006). A co-citation For instance, the line between no. 49 (Fishbein &matrix is inherently very similar to a social network, a Ajzen 1975) and no. 50 (Ajzen & Fishbein 1980)network of linked papers. The core of the co-citation indicates that no. 49 and no. 50 are cited together formatrix, representing key publications from business nine times in the selected publications. If there is noethics research, can be shown diagrammatically as a line connection between two publications in thisnetwork with locations determined using Euclidian graph, then it indicates the co-citations for these twodistances. Using the graphing programmer publications are less than nine times or no co-citationNETDRAW (version 2.0, Analytic Technologies, at all. The superstars in the center of Figure 1 areLexington, KY, which comes with the social network those that get most citations and thus have most © 2012 The Authors290 Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
  6. 6. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012 Figure 2: Key research clusters in business ethics studiesinfluence on business ethics research. These titles col- undoubtedly indicate their prestigious status in busi-lectively define contemporary business ethics research ness ethics research. Their contributions and explora-and they delimit what the key research themes are in tion in business ethics collectively define the changingthe field of business ethics and what their correlations research paradigms of business ethics studies.are with other titles, as well as how strong these While the diagrams in Figures 1 and 2 are verycorrelations are. telling and provide a general picture of contempo- To make it more revealing, Figure 2 was drawn rary business ethics studies in 2001–2008, their focususing a different technique. It was again produced is on the very core area, and only a limited amount ofusing UCINET software (Borgatti et al. 2002) and information is available. In order to further examineshows graphically the core areas of interest in business key research themes of business ethics research, aethics but with different node shapes representing factor analysis was conducted by taking thedifferent clusters, resulting from performing a faction co-citation matrix and grouping the authors usingstudy of these titles. This method seeks to group the correlations between the entries. The closeness ofelements (i.e. publications in this study) in a network author points on such diagrams is algorithmicallybased on sharing of common links to each other. This related to their similarity as perceived by citers. Wediagram shows that research in business ethics in use r-Pearson as a measure of similarity between2001–2008 is concentrating on the interactions author pairs because it registers the likeness in shapebetween social contract theory, ethical decision- of their co-citation count profiles over all othermaking theory, corporate social responsibility (CSR), authors in the set (White & McCain 1998). Theand stakeholder theory. The few titles centered in co-citation matrix was then factor analyzed usingFigure 2 are similar to those in Figure 1; they are varimax rotation, a commonly used procedure,superstars in business ethics research. Their heavy which attempts to load a maximum number ofcitations and intensive interlinks with each other entries on a minimum number of factors. The diago-© 2012 The AuthorsBusiness Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd 291
  7. 7. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012nals were considered missing data and the criterion derived from the macrosocial contract) with contex-of omission was applied (McCain 1990). tual micro-level contracts forged for practicality Four factor groups were consequently extracted within the ‘moral free space’ of different culturesfrom the citation data in 2001–2008, and together, (Donaldson & Dunfee 1999). Theoretical develop-they explained over 81% of the variances in the cor- ments in this line of research, especially by integratingrelation matrix. Table 3 lists these four factors along an institutional level of analysis, have made impor-with the titles that had a factor loading at 0.6 or tant practical applications of social contract theory.higher. As is common in this type of analysis, titles Meanwhile, scholars in this cluster also attempt towith less than a 0.6 loading or with cross-loadings explore the application of business ethics theory inwere dropped from the final results (White & Griffith an international context, a topic not well studied yet1981). Descriptive names were assigned to these having become increasingly important in the age offactors based on titles with high associated loadings. globalization. One of the first monographs on ethicsThe final results show that contemporary business of international business is that of Donaldsonethics research is composed of four fundamental but (1989). Donaldson considered multinational corpo-distinct subfields: morality and social contract rations as ‘moral agents’ and discussed their socialtheory, ethical decision making, CSR, and stake- responsibility in the global context based on theholder theory. analysis of moral values individuals used in decision making in these firms. Donaldson contended that it appeared clear multinational corporations had manyCluster 1: Morality and social contract theory responsibilities, going beyond just maximizingFigure 2 and Table 3 clearly indicate that the most profits (Donaldson 1989).influential publications in business ethics studiesbetween 2001 and 2008 cluster around four major Cluster 2: Ethical decision-making theorythemes, and the first one focused on morality andsocial contract theory. While it seems there are few Figure 2 and Table 3 show that ethical decision-‘most cited’ titles in this research cluster, their con- making theory permeates the titles in the secondtribution to contemporary business ethics research is group. Over the past two decades, a number ofamong the most important, and about half of busi- frameworks have been proposed for a better under-ness ethics studies in 2001–2008 are around this standing of reasoning, or decision-making processes,theme. underlying moral/immoral behaviors (e.g. Hunt & Within this group of research, Donaldson (1982) Vitell 1986, Rest 1986, Trevino 1986, Trevino &and Rawls (1971) proposed that there was a moral Youngblood 1990). The literature has thus produceddimension underpinning socially responsible behav- several ethical decision-making models (Rest 1986,ior and that the corporation should ‘do good’ because Trevino 1986, Jones 1991). While these theoreticalit was the right thing to do. Historically, the social models all share three common elements – percep-contract theory has adopted a rigid macro perspective tion of a moral problem, process of moral reasoning,on ethical issues, and this approach has been conve- and moral behaviors – they differ in the conceptual-nient for broad moral theory building. Later, ization of the reasoning–behavior link. For example,Donaldson & Dunfee (1994, 1999) integrated both while both Rest (1986) and Jones (1991) argued thatmacrosocial and microsocial contracts into the struc- the reasoning–behavior link was mediated by moralture of their theory to create a more comprehensive intentions, Jones (1991) contended that the intensitytheory of contractarian ethics. They have increased of the moral issue involved also moderated this rela-the applicability of social contract theory by down- tionship. His model provided a useful heuristicshifting the level of analysis to the institutional or framework for understanding the process individualsorganizational level and incorporating local context go through when deciding whether to engage inwithin their contract framework. Their Integrated unethical behaviors.Social Contract Theory argues that theorists should The ethical decision-making process is affected bysupplement ‘hyper-norms’ (universal principles many factors such as individual attributes and social © 2012 The Authors292 Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
  8. 8. .....................................................................................................................................................................................................................© 2012 The Authors Table 3: Article factor loadings: 2001–2008 Factor 1: morality and 49.8% Factor 2: ethical decision 20.8% Factor 3: corporate 7.0% Factor 4: stakeholder 3.8% social contract theory variance making variance social responsibility variance theory variance Donaldson T, 1982, 0.906 Rest JR, 1986, Moral Dev Adv 0.953 McGuire JB, 1988, 0.873 Jones TM, 1999, Acad 0.894 Corporations Moralit Res Th Acad Manage J Manage Rev Donaldson T, 1989, 0.861 Trevino LK, 1990, J Appl Psychol 0.939 Carroll AB, 1991, Bus 0.861 Mitchell RK, 1997, 0.876 Ethics Int Business Trevino LK, 1986, Acad Manage 0.929 Horizons Acad Manage Rev Donaldson T, 1994, 0.853 Rev Griffin JJ, 1997, Bus 0.851 Jones TM, 1995, Acad 0.871 Acad Manage Rev Jones TM, 1991, Acad Manage 0.928 Soc Manage Rev Rawls J, 1971, Theory 0.833 Rev Carroll AB, 1979, 0.828 Donaldson T, 1995, 0.864 Justice Hunt SD, 1986, J Macromarketing 0.923 Acad Manage Rev Acad Manage Rev Donaldson T, 1999, 0.806 Kohlberg L, 1969, HDB Socializ 0.922 Carroll AB, 1999, Bus 0.826 Frooman J, 1999, 0.869Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd Ties Bind Th Soc Acad Manage Rev Dimaggio PJ, 1983, 0.611 Ford RC, 1994, J Bus Ethics 0.915 Hillman AJ, 2001, 0.783 Berman SL, 1999, 0.829 Am Sociol Rev Victor B, 1988, Adm Sci Q 0.897 Strategic Manage J Acad Manage J Loe TW, 2000, J Bus Ethics 0.897 McWilliams A, 2001, 0.775 Freeman RE, 1984, 0.821 Hegarty WH, 1978, J Appl Psychol 0.878 Acad Manage Rev Strategic Managem Ferrell OC, 1989, J 0.878 Clark GL, 1995, T I 0.745 Goodpaster KE, 1991, 0.818 Macromarketing Brit Geogr Business Ethics Q Hegarty WH, 1979, J Appl 0.853 Freeman R, 1994, 0.769 PsychoL Business Ethics Q Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012 Hunt SD, 1993, J Marketing Res 0.818 Clarkson MBE, 1995, 0.766 Business Ethics: A European Review Fishbein M, 1975, Belief Attitude 0.787 Acad Manage Rev Inte Barnard CI, 1938, 0.715 Chonko LB, 1985, J Bus Res 0.774 Functions Executive Jackall R, 1988, Moral Mazes 0.766 WorlD Forsyth DR, 1980, J Pers Soc 0.763 Psychol Hunt SD, 1989, J Marketing 0.723 Ajzen I, 1980, Understanding Atti 0.723 Adams JS, 2001, J Bus Ethics 0.664 .....................................................................................................................................................................................................................293
  9. 9. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012and cultural environments. Trevino (1986) proposed more recent reviews of the empirical CSR literaturethat the reasoning–behavior relationship was mod- indicate a positive correlation between investing inerated by individual and situational factors. The socially responsible activities and corporate financialindividual factors may include those factors such as performance (Waddock & Graves 1997, Margolis &nationality, gender and age, and the situational Walsh 2001, Orlitzky et al. 2003).factors resulting from human development andsocialization processes may include personality, atti- Cluster 4: Stakeholder theorytudes, values, education, religion and employment(Ford & Richardson 1994). Similarly, Hunt & Vitell The stakeholder theory attracts scholars in the(1986) suggested religion has influence on an indi- fourth group. There have been many discussionsvidual’s perception of ethics. They believed that reli- about stakeholder management in parallel to, andgion could affect ethical decision making in three also as a consequence of, the debate about CSR.ways, namely, the cultural environment, the personal Since the concept of CSR emphasizes the relation-characteristic, and finally the religion itself, which is ship with stakeholders, stakeholder management isoften a dominant basis for an individual’s deonto- widely regarded as a managerial framework forlogical norms. dealing with social responsibility (Freeman 1984). A key issue in stakeholder theory is to identify salient stakeholders, that is, ‘who and what really counts’Cluster 3: Corporate social responsibility (Freeman 1994). In general, there have been twoThe theme of CSR permeates the titles in the third perspectives on identifying stakeholders: a narrowgroup. Questions concerning the role of business in view of stakeholders and a broad view of stakehold-society have given rise to a burgeoning body of litera- ers (Mitchell et al. 1997). The narrow view of stake-ture on the basis for, and relative merits of, greater holders tends to identify those groups that canCSR (Friedman 1970, Carroll 1999). Carroll (1979) directly affect or be affected by the obtainment offirst proposed a four-factor definition of CSR that firm’s objectives (Donaldson & Preston 1995). Inwas embedded in a conceptual model of corporate contrast, the broad view of stakeholders attempts tosocial performance (CSP) by differentiating between include all the groups and individuals who can affectfour types of CSR: economic, legal, ethical, and dis- or are affected by the organization’s achievementcretionary. He further argued that firms need to have (Freeman 1984). Mitchell et al. (1997), drawing upona basic definition of CSR, an understanding of the various theories of the firm, have developed a theo-issues for which a social responsibility existed, a speci- retical framework of stakeholder identification andfication of the philosophy of responsiveness to the salience. This framework is based on three relation-ethical issues in order to effectively engage in CSP. ship attributes: power, legitimacy, and urgency. TheyOther researchers have argued that slack resources argue that power, legitimacy, and urgency should befor social responsibility are more closely related to combined to identify stakeholders and assess theirprior financial performance than to current profit- level of salience.ability. This view is supported by the works of The main titles in this cluster also show that in theMcGuire et al. (1988) and Waddock & Graves (1997), development of stakeholder theory, there are twowho found strong relationships between charitable different methodological approaches in the litera-giving and prior financial performance. ture: the normative stakeholder theory and the From a broader view of CSR, McWilliams & instrumental stakeholder theory (Donaldson &Siegel (2001) defined CSR as actions that appear to Preston 1995, Berman et al. 1999, Jones & Wicksadvance social good, going beyond the interests of 1999), while some scholars have attempted to inte-the firm and what is required by law. The linkage grate these two approaches (Jones 1995, Jones &between CSR and firm financial performance has Wicks 1999). The underlying rationale of theirreceived considerable research attention. Although studies is that ethical behaviors (a normative orien-Griffin & Mahon (1997) failed to support a relation- tation) can result in a significant competitive advan-ship between corporate giving and profitability, tage (an instrumental orientation). © 2012 The Authors294 Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
  10. 10. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012Conclusion research themes and topics in business ethics studies, how they relate, and what they stand for; and con-The past decade has seen extensive research and sequently, business ethics as a field will gain morerapid development in the business ethics field. This momentum for further explores current research paradigms of con- In addition, the mapping of contemporary busi-temporary business ethics research using citation and ness ethics research in this study also provides anco-citation analysis on the data published by JBE important tool for new scholars and other academicsand BEQ, indexed in SSCI. With the social network who are interested in the research on business ethics.analysis tools and a factor analysis, this study maps They will have a shortcut into this area withoutthe changing research paradigms of business ethics having to spend a great deal of their valuable time onresearch in 2001–2008, and the results suggest that the ‘startup’ stage. The identified intellectual struc-contemporary business ethics research is organized ture in the literature of business ethics and thealong different concentrations of interests: morality research paradigms can easily help them walkand social contract theory, ethical decision making, through the business ethics research jungle by pro-CSR, and stakeholder theory. viding them with the most influential publications The mapping of the intellectual structure of busi- and researchers from different fields. The beginnersness ethics studies indicates that business ethics has in the business ethics field can then concentrate oncreated its own literature and that it has gained the key themes. Further, this mapping of business ethicsreputation as a legitimate academic field, with some studies provides researchers with a wide spectrum ofbusiness ethics specific journals gaining a prominent interconnected knowledge nodes on business ethicsstatus, such as JBE, BEQ, and Business Ethics: A laden with ideas, concepts, and frameworks fromEuropean Review. Given that business ethics is still where scholars and thinkers can start their ownrelatively young, it is believed that business ethics inquiry. Scholars can use this mapping to get a com-publication outlets will gain more popularity and prehensive picture of the business ethics field in orderprestige required to become a more prominent aca- to obtain necessary knowledge to communicate withdemic field when we learn more about the key others in this field.Appendix: Most cited business ethics publications in 2001–2008...................................................................................................................................................................ID# Full citation index for documents Total citation 1 Jones TM, 1991, ACAD MANAGE REV, V16, P366–395 144 2 Freeman RE, 1984, STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT: A STAKEHOLDER APP 122 3 Donaldson T, 1995, ACAD MANAGE REV, V20, P65–91 119 4 Hunt SD, 1986, J MACROMARKETING SPR, P5–16 108 5 Friedman M, 1970, NY TIMES, 0913 99 6 Donaldson T, 1999, TIES THAT BIND: A SOCIAL CONTRACTS APPROACH 91 7 Mitchell RK, 1997, ACAD MANAGE REV, V22, P853–886 78 8 Gilligan C, 1982, IN A DIFFERENT VOICE 77 9 Trevino LK, 1986, ACAD MANAGE REV, V11, P601–617 7610 Carroll AB, 1979, ACAD MANAGE REV, V4, P497–505 7211 Friedman M, 1962, CAPITALISM AND FREEDOM 7012 Jensen MC, 1976, J FINANC ECON, V3, P305–360 6713 Kohlberg L, 1969, HANDBOOK OF SOCIALIZA TH AND RESE (PP.347–480) 6514 Jones TM, 1995, ACAD MANAGE REV, V20, P404–437 5715 Ford RC, 1994, J BUS ETHICS, V13, P205–221 5616 Hofstede G, 1980, CULTURES CONSEQUENCE 5617 Donaldson T, 1994, ACAD MANAGE REV, V19, P252–284 5518 Freeman R, 1994, BUSINESS ETHICS Q, V4, P409–421 5019 Donaldson T, 1989, ETHICS OF INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS 49© 2012 The AuthorsBusiness Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd 295
  11. 11. Business Ethics: A European Review Volume 21 Number 3 June 2012Appendix Continued ...................................................................................................................................................................ID# Full citation index for documents Total citation20 Rawls J, 1971, A THEORY OF JUSTICE 4921 Forsyth DR, 1980, J PERS SOC PSYCHOL, V39, P175–184 4422 Hegarty WH, 1978, J APPL PSYCHOL, V63, P451–457 4123 Griffin JJ, 1997, BUS SOC, V36, P5–31 3824 Ferrell OC, 1989, J MACROMARKETING, V9, P55–64 3725 Carroll AB, 1991, BUS HORIZONS, V34, P39–48 3726 Jones TM, 1999, ACAD MANAGE REV, V24, P206–221 3627 Hegarty WH, 1979, J APPL PSYCHOL, V64, P331–338 3528 Jackall R, 1988, MORAL MAZES: WORLD CORPORATE MANAGERS 3529 McWilliams A, 2001, ACAD MANAGE REV, V26, P117–127 3530 Barnard CI, 1938, FUNCTIONS OF THE EXECUTIVE 3531 Donaldson T, 1982, CORPORATIONS AND MORALITY 3532 Chonko LB, 1985, J BUS RES, V13, P339–359 3433 Clarkson MBE, 1995, ACAD MANAGE REV, V20, P92–117 3434 Clark GL, 1995, TRANSACTIONS OF INST OF BRIT GEOGR, V20, P204–223 3435 Victor B, 1988, ADM SCI Q, V33, P101–125 3436 Frooman J, 1999, ACAD MANAGE REV, V24, P191–205 3337 Rest JR, 1986, MORAL DEVELOPMENT: ADVANCES IN RES AND THEORY 3238 Goodpaster KE, 1991, BUSINESS ETHICS Q, V1, P53–73 3139 Hunt SD, 1989, J MARKETING, V53, P79–90 3140 Loe TW, 2000, J BUS ETHICS, V25, P185–204 3141 Hillman AJ, 2001, STRATEGIC MANAGE J, V22, P125–139 3042 Carroll AB, 1999, BUS SOC, V38, P268–295 3043 Dimaggio PJ, 1983, AM SOCIOL REV, V48, P147–160 2944 Hofstede G, 1991, CULTURES AND ORG: SOFTWARE OF THE MIND 2845 Hunt SD, 1993, J MARKETING RES, V30, P78–90 2846 Mcguire JB, 1988, ACAD MANAGE J, V31, P854–872 2847 Adams JS, 2001, J BUS ETHICS, V29, P199–211 2848 Berman SL, 1999, ACAD MANAGE J, V42, P488–506 2849 Fishbein M, 1975, BELIEF, ATTITUDE, INTENTION, AND BEHAVIOR 2750 Ajzen I, 1980, UNDERSTANDING ATTITUDES AND PREDICTING SOCI BEHR 2751 Trevino LK, 1990, J APPL PSYCHOL, V75, P378–385 27...........................................................................................................................References Chandy, P.R. and Williams, T.G.E. 1994. ‘The impact of journals and authors on international businessBerman, S.L., Wicks, A.C., Kotha, S. and Jones, T.M. research: a citation analysis’. Journal of International 1999. ‘Does stakeholder orientation matter? The Business Studies, 25:4, 715–728. relationship between stakeholder management Cronin, B. 1984. The Citation Process: The Role and models and firm financial performance’. Academy of Significance of Citations in Scientific Communication. Management Journal, 42:5, 488–506. London: Taylor Graham.Borgatti, S.P., Everett, M.G. and Freeman, L.C. 2002. De George, R.T. 1987. ‘The status of business ethics: UCINET for Windows: Software for Social Network past and future’. Journal of Business Ethics, 6:3, 201– Analysis. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. 211.Carroll, A.B. 1979. ‘A three-dimensional conceptual Diodato, V. 1994. Dictionary of Bibliometrics. Bing- model of corporate performance’. Academy of Man- hamton, NY: Haworth Press. agement Review, 4:4, 497–505. Donaldson, T. 1982. Corporations and Morality. Engle-Carroll, A.B. 1999. ‘Corporate social responsibility: wood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. evolution of a definitional construct’. Business and Donaldson, T. 1989. The Ethics of International Busi- Society, 38:3, 268–296. ness. New York: Oxford University Press. © 2012 The Authors296 Business Ethics: A European Review © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
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