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Communicating the ethos of codes of ethics within the organization: A comparison of the largest private sector organizations in Sweden and Turkey

Arzu Ulgen Aydinlik (Istanbul University, Istanbul, Turkey)
Dilek Donmez (Istanbul University, Istanbul, Turkey)
Göran Svensson (Oslo School of Management, Oslo, Norway)
Greg Wood (Deakin University, Warrnambool, Australia)
Michael Callaghan (Deakin University, Warrnambool, Australia)

Journal of Management Development

ISSN: 0262-1711

Article publication date: 18 July 2008

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to examine the ways that the largest private sector organizations in Sweden and Turkey communicate the intent of their codes of ethics to their employees.

Design/methodology/approach

Primary data were obtained via a self‐administered mail questionnaire distributed to a census of the top 500 private sector organizations based on revenue in each country.

Findings

The research identified some interesting findings that showed that the small group of companies in Turkey that have a code may appear to be more “advanced” in ethics artifacts usage than Sweden. Such a conclusion is counter‐intuitive as one would have expected a developed nation like Sweden to be more advanced in these measures than a developing nation such as Turkey. Culture may play a large role in the implementation of ethics artifacts in corporations and could be a major reason for this difference.

Research limitations/implications

As this is such a new area of investigation in Turkey, the responses amount to only 32 companies that have a code. The small sample is indicative of the formative evolution toward having codes of ethics within companies operating within Turkey.

Practical implications

This study enables those organizations that comprise corporate Turkey to view the current state of codes of ethics in Turkish companies and to compare these with the responses of a developed country of the European Union.

Originality and value

A review of the literature indicates that this is the first time that such an international study specifically focused upon codes of ethics and the artifacts to inculcate the ethos of the code into every day corporate affairs has included Turkey as one of the participating countries.

Keywords

Citation

Ulgen Aydinlik, A., Donmez, D., Svensson, G., Wood, G. and Callaghan, M. (2008), "Communicating the ethos of codes of ethics within the organization: A comparison of the largest private sector organizations in Sweden and Turkey", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 27 No. 7, pp. 778-790. https://doi.org/10.1108/02621710810883652

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited