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Proactive versus reactive business ethics performance: a conceptual framework of profile analysis and case illustrations

Goran Svensson (Goran Svensson is an Associate Professor at the School of Business and Engineering, Halmstad University, Sweden. Tel: 4635167100, E‐mail: goran.svensson@set.hh.se)
Greg Wood (Greg Wood is at Bowater School of Management and Marketing, Deakin University, Victoria, Australia. Tel: (61) 03 55 633 538, Fax: (61) 03 55 633 320, E‐mail: gwood@deakin.edu.au)

Corporate Governance

ISSN: 1472-0701

Article publication date: 1 June 2004

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Abstract

The topic of this paper focuses on proactive versus reactive business ethics performance in the marketplace. The internal perception of a corporation and the external perception of the same corporation are used as generic determinants of business ethics performance. In turn, they are underpinned by evolutionary and contextual issues in the marketplace. The authors provide a generic conceptual framework of proactive and reactive business ethics performance. Case illustrations underpin the positives and negatives of proactive and reactive business ethics in the marketplace. A profile analysis process of proactive and reactive business ethics performance is also outlined. The gap between the internal and external perceptions of a corporation’s actions becomes crucial to achieve successful business ethics performance in the marketplace. Therefore, a corporation’s current business ethics performance should always be regarded as an on‐the‐spot‐account that is either proactive or reactive. An important insight of this research is that business ethics performance requires the ongoing re‐connection with reality by corporations.

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Citation

Svensson, G. and Wood, G. (2004), "Proactive versus reactive business ethics performance: a conceptual framework of profile analysis and case illustrations", Corporate Governance, Vol. 4 No. 2, pp. 18-33. https://doi.org/10.1108/14720700410534949

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited