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Towards the ethical or the unethical side? An explorative research of Greek business students' attitudes

Eleonora Karassavidou (Department of Economics, Division of Business Administration, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece)
Niki Glaveli (Department of Economics, Division of Business Administration, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece)

International Journal of Educational Management

ISSN: 0951-354X

Article publication date: 1 August 2006

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to investigate the ethical orientations of undergraduate business students in Greece by exploring the relations among students' internalized code of ethics, anomia and students' judgment related to ethical problem situations within classroom as well as business context.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual framework was developed and a pilot empirical research was conducted based on a questionnaire addressed to a sample of 123 business school undergraduate students. Hypotheses were stated and tested.

Findings

The paper finds that internalised code of ethics (ICE) and anomia constructs proved to be reliable and captured the examined students' profile in terms of both their ethical orientations and their world view. Greek future business people's ethical judgement tends to incline towards the ethical side. The ICE appears to influence students' ethical judgment while anomia has no impact. Further, academic dishonesty is positively related to students' attitudes towards unethical managers' behaviors in the business context.

Research limitations/implications

The nature of the research is explanatory, addressed to students of one semester and thus results cannot be generalized on a broader context. Also the construct developed by the authors need to be further tested to increase its validity.

Practical implications

Business schools need to empower students' internalized code of ethics towards the development of more socially responsible future managers and leaders.

Originality/value

The developed construct of the internalized code of ethics and its revealing key role on Greek business students' ethical judgment is considered by the authors as the main contribution of this study.

Keywords

Citation

Karassavidou, E. and Glaveli, N. (2006), "Towards the ethical or the unethical side? An explorative research of Greek business students' attitudes", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 20 No. 5, pp. 348-364. https://doi.org/10.1108/09513540610676421

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited