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The influence of moral sensitivity on organizational cooperation

Oswaldo Terán (Operations Research and CESIMO, Universidad de Los Andes, Merida, Venezuela)
Christophe Sibertin-Blanc (IRIT, Université Toulouse-1 Capitole, Toulouse, France)
Benoit Gaudou (IRIT, Université Toulouse-1 Capitole, Toulouse, France)


ISSN: 0368-492X

Article publication date: 1 June 2015




The purpose of this paper is to present how to model moral sensitivity and emotions in organizational setting by using the SocLab formal framework. SocLab is a platform for the modelling, simulation and analysis of cooperation relationships within social organizations – and more generally Systems of Organized Action.


Simulation results, including an interesting tendency for a Free Rider model, will be given. Considering that actors’ decision-making processes are not just driven by instrumental interest, the SocLab learning simulation algorithm has been extended to represent moral sensitivity, making actors trying to prevent bad emotions and feel good ones.


Some simulation results about actors’ collaboration and emotions in a Free Rider model were presented. A noteworthy tendency is that actors’ unconditional collaboration, which occurs when their moral sensitivity reaches its highest value, is not so good since it exempts other actors from collaboration (they take advantage from the unconditional collaboration), while values of moral sensitivity somewhat below the highest value (between 0.7 and 0.9) still induces collaboration from others.


The research and results presented in this paper have not been presented in other papers or workshops. The presented quantitative definition of emotions (determining indexes of emotions) is different to previous approaches – for instance, to Ortony, Clore and Collins (OCC) qualitative descriptions and to logical descriptions. Similarly, simulation of morality in organizations is a new research field, which has received scarce attention up to now.



This work has been supported by the French ANR project EMOTES “Emotions in social interaction: theoretical and empirical studies”, Contract No. ANR-11-EMCO 004 03. The authors thank CDCHT – ULA for partial support to present a previous version of this work at WOSC 2014.


Terán, O., Sibertin-Blanc, C. and Gaudou, B. (2015), "The influence of moral sensitivity on organizational cooperation", Kybernetes, Vol. 44 No. 6/7, pp. 1067-1081.



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