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Ethical Predisposition of Certified Public Accountants: A Study of Gender Differences

Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting

ISBN: 978-1-78052-760-4, eISBN: 978-1-78052-761-1

ISSN: 1574-0765

Publication date: 13 August 2012

Abstract

Using a sample of 304 Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), this paper investigates gender differences in moral development and personal value preferences of CPAs. We used the Defining Issues Test (DIT) to measure moral development, the Rokeach Value Survey (RVS) (Rokeach, 1973) to determine value preferences, and the Musser and Orke (1992) typology to determine value type preferences. The typology analysis indicates that all CPAs in our sample prefer personal values to social values. From an overall ethical predisposition standpoint, males and females are more alike than different; yet, there were a few notable differences. Specifically, males prefer competence values and females have higher preference for moral values. For example, while male CPAs exhibit higher priorities for the competence values of imaginative and logical, female CPAs exhibit higher priority for the moral value of loving. We also find a gender effect for moral development, where female CPAs significantly outscore their male counterparts.

Keywords

Citation

Ariail, D.L., Abdolmohammadi, M.J. and Murphy Smith, L. (2012), "Ethical Predisposition of Certified Public Accountants: A Study of Gender Differences", Jeffrey, C. (Ed.) Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting (Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting, Vol. 16), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 29-56. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1574-0765(2012)0000016005

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited