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Article
Publication date: 31 August 2021

Kevin Teah, Billy Sung and Ian Phau

The purpose of this study is to examine how perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) motives may influence situational scepticism towards luxury brands and its…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine how perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) motives may influence situational scepticism towards luxury brands and its effects on brand resonance, resilience to negative information and consumer advocacy of luxury brands. The moderating role of perceived fit towards luxury brand CSR initiatives is also investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

An experimental approach on a 2 × 2 matrix was used. Data are collected through a consumer panel.

Findings

Values-driven motives were found to lead to lower consumer situational scepticism and egoistic-driven motives would lead to higher levels of consumer situational scepticism. While higher consumer situational scepticism leads to lower brand resonance, there is no significant relationship between scepticism and resilience to negative information and consumer advocacy. The findings also suggest that perceived fit moderates the relationship between consumer situational scepticism to resilience to negative information and consumer situational scepticism to consumer advocacy.

Originality/value

The key originality of the study is that it provides empirical insights into situational scepticism of CSR initiatives and its influence in consumer and management outcomes in luxury brands.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

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Article
Publication date: 11 August 2021

Fayez Ahmad and Francisco Guzmán

Despite skepticism, consumers rely on online reviews for their purchase decisions. However, academics mostly argue that skepticism has an inverse relationship with…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite skepticism, consumers rely on online reviews for their purchase decisions. However, academics mostly argue that skepticism has an inverse relationship with consumer decision-making. This study aims to investigate the relationship among skepticism, reliance and consumer purchase decisions in an online review context. It also investigates the moderating role of review self-efficacy and regulatory focus in the relationship between skepticism and reliance on online reviews.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey with a nationally representative sample and two experimental studies are conducted.

Findings

Skepticism negatively affects consumers’ reliance on online reviews and reliance on online reviews mediates the relationship between skepticism and review-based purchase decisions. High review self-efficacy participants tend to rely more on online reviews than low review self-efficacy participants. Promotion-focused people rely more on online reviews than prevention-focused people, despite similar levels of skepticism.

Research limitations/implications

The findings contribute to the skepticism, self-efficacy and regulatory focus literature. The general framework of the relationship among skepticism, reliance and purchase decision is also applicable in an online review context.

Originality/value

The results provide evidence of a stronger reliance on online reviews of high review self-efficacy and promotion-oriented consumers compared to low review self-efficacy and prevention-oriented consumers.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 38 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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Book part
Publication date: 2 May 2007

Sandra Diehl, Barbara Mueller and Ralf Terlutter

The purpose of this investigation is to add to the body of knowledge regarding consumer skepticism toward advertising in general, and toward pharmaceutical advertising in…

Abstract

The purpose of this investigation is to add to the body of knowledge regarding consumer skepticism toward advertising in general, and toward pharmaceutical advertising in particular. The study was conducted in the U.S. and in Germany. Skepticism toward advertising for both prescription and non-prescription pharmaceuticals was analyzed. Additional variables explored include: health consciousness, product involvement with pharmaceuticals, satisfaction with information in pharmaceutical advertising, and the importance of pharmaceutical advertising as a source of information. Furthermore, differences in the cultural value of uncertainty avoidance between U.S. and German consumers were examined and related to skepticism toward pharmaceutical advertising. Three hundred and forty-one Americans and 447 Germans were surveyed. A significant finding of this research revealed that skepticism toward pharmaceutical advertising is lower than skepticism toward advertising in general. Results also indicated that consumers showed no difference in their level of skepticism toward advertising for prescription versus non-prescription drugs. This is a particularly relevant finding as it relates directly to the ongoing discussion in Europe regarding whether or not to lift the ban on advertising for prescription drugs. Skepticism toward pharmaceutical advertising was found to be significantly negatively related to involvement with pharmaceuticals, to satisfaction with the informational content of the advertisements, to satisfaction with the comprehensibility of the advertisements, and to the importance placed on advertising as a source of health information. Regarding cultural differences, U.S. consumers appear to be less skeptical toward advertising in general, and toward advertising for prescription and non-prescription drugs in particular, than German consumers. This may be due to the lower degree of uncertainty avoidance in the U.S. Differences between the two countries related to the additional variables examined in the study are addressed as well. Implications for consumer protection policies are discussed, and recommendations for advertisers of pharmaceutical products are provided. The authors provide a cultural explanation for differences in the degree of skepticism between U.S. and German audiences.

Details

Cross-Cultural Buyer Behavior
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-485-0

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Book part
Publication date: 13 August 2012

Magdy S. Farag and Rafik Z. Elias

Professional skepticism has been an essential part of every audit. Recently, Hurtt (2010) introduced the concept of trait skepticism (an enduring aspect of an individual's…

Abstract

Professional skepticism has been an essential part of every audit. Recently, Hurtt (2010) introduced the concept of trait skepticism (an enduring aspect of an individual's psychology). The current study examines trait professional skepticism using a sample of accounting students and investigates its potential relationship with ethical perception of earnings management actions. Results indicate that more skeptical students viewed earnings management actions as more unethical compared to less skeptical students. More specifically, higher skeptics viewed earnings management actions that benefited the manager and accounting manipulations as more unethical than actions that benefited the firm and were considered normal operating decisions. These results offer guidance to accounting instructors as they emphasize ethical issues in the classroom and are important to Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firms as they train their auditors in professional skepticism.

Details

Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-761-1

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Abstract

This research note investigates the relationship between the constructs of professional skepticism and client advocacy as they relate to accountants’ roles as auditors and tax professionals. Although Pinsker, Pennington, and Schafer (2009) implicitly treat advocacy and professional skepticism as opposing constructs, the purpose of this research note is to explicitly examine whether an accounting professional can be both a professional skeptic and a client advocate. Two hundred and six experienced accounting professionals with a mixture of accounting and tax backgrounds responded to a client advocacy scale (Pinsker et al., 2009) and a professional skepticism scale (Hurtt, 2010). Results indicate that while tax professionals have higher levels of client advocacy than auditors, both groups have similar levels of professional skepticism. Moreover, no correlation emerges between participants’ responses to the advocacy and the full professional skepticism scale or five of its six sub-scales. These results provide evidence that client advocacy is a separate and distinct construct from professional skepticism. These findings have implications for behavioral accounting researchers by demonstrating that these two constructs are not related; thus, it is important to separately measure client advocacy and professional skepticism when they are relevant to a research question.

Details

Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-445-9

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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2020

Jookyung Kwon and Jiseon Ahn

This paper aims to examine the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) skepticism on dual types of attitudinal factors (i.e. positive attitude and reactance) and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) skepticism on dual types of attitudinal factors (i.e. positive attitude and reactance) and examine the impact of attitudinal factors on customers' behavioral intention.

Design/methodology/approach

This study applies mixed-method research to examine the link between CSR skepticism, positive attitude, reactance and behavioral intention based on attitude-behavior-context theory.

Findings

As predicted, CSR skepticism weakens a favorable attitude toward CSR, whereas it increases the level of reactance. Also, CSR skepticism negatively influences behavioral intention, while positive attitude and reactance positively influence behavioral intention.

Originality/value

Understanding customers' skepticism toward CSR has become increasingly important because of its negative consequences. Despite existing studies on CSR skepticism, few have focused on why and how CSR skepticism leads to negative behavioral outcomes. Thus, this research contributes to existing tourism literature by examining the role of CSR skepticism on their attitude and behavior. Findings will help researchers and practitioners understand how CSR skepticism impacts customers' behavioral intention and develops CSR strategies to enhance the behavioral intention to patronize.

Details

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights, vol. 4 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9792

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 1998

James A. Stever

Scepticism about organizations has become an integral part of the field organizational theory. This article aspires to develop through historical analysis a taxonomy of…

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1235

Abstract

Scepticism about organizations has become an integral part of the field organizational theory. This article aspires to develop through historical analysis a taxonomy of organizational scepticism. Though scepticism of all types have generic traits, there are three distinct types of scepticism: premodern, modern and postmodern scepticism. Premodern scepticism attacks the modern organizational by stressing concepts grounded in nature and tradition. Modern sceptics attack the optimism of managerialism about organizations. Postmodern sceptics stress that technological developments, economic self interest, and irrationality will be the eventual undoing of modern organization. Organizational scepticism is now so pervasive that it should be treated as an integral part of the field.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-252X

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2015

Imran Rahman, Jeongdoo Park and Christina Geng-qing Chi

This quasi-experimental study aimed to investigate, drawing upon influential discounting behavior theory and cognition – affect – behavior (C-A-B) paradigm, consumers…

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15352

Abstract

Purpose

This quasi-experimental study aimed to investigate, drawing upon influential discounting behavior theory and cognition – affect – behavior (C-A-B) paradigm, consumers’ reactions to the phenomenon of “greenwashing” in the lodging industry. More specifically, this paper proposed and tested a theoretical model that examined whether recognizing the ulterior motive caused consumer skepticism about hotels’ environmental claims, which in turn influenced consumers’ intention to participate in linen reuse program and intention to revisit the hotel. Additionally, the moderating effects of ecological concern on the relationship between skepticism and intention to participate and between skepticism and intention to revisit were examined.

Design/methodology/approach

A quasi-experimental design was used with two conditions (control vs ulterior motive) employing staff members of a US public university as study participants. In total, 638 useful responses were received.

Findings

The results of this study revealed that an ulterior motive of hotels’ environmental claims evoked consumer skepticism, which, in turn, negatively influenced consumers’ intention to participate in the linen reuse program and intention to revisit the hotel. Skepticism was found to partially mediate the relationships between ulterior motive and intention to participate and between ulterior motive and intention to revisit. Consumers’ ecological concern was not found to moderate the relationship between skepticism and intention to participate in the linen reuse program and skepticism and intention to revisit the hotel. In addition, a significant positive direct effect between ecological concern and intention to participate and a non-significant effect between ecological concern and revisit intention were revealed.

Research limitations/implications

Focus on consumers’ response to the ulterior motive of environmental claims advances an understanding of consumers’ attitudes and perceptions about hotels’ green practices.

Practical implications

Findings suggest that hotels need to be watchful so that consumers do not become skeptical. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that managers do everything possible to give customers no room for doubt. Hoteliers need to spend more effort in installing comprehensive green programs and make true green claims by keeping the potential consequences of greenwashing in mind. Hoteliers also need to seek out third-party certifications that require the hotel to meet certain standards, which will help ensure credibility in the eyes of consumers.

Originality/value

Hospitality literature has seldom explored this gray area of green marketing, and, in this regard, this study serves as a guide to hoteliers and researchers alike. The authors thereby anticipate that this study would encourage more research in this often overlooked but highly important area.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 27 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 3 January 2020

Minelle E. Silva, José Milton de Sousa-Filho, Amanda Pruski Yamim and Abílio Peixoto Diógenes

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between consumers’ skepticism and green consumption in different economies by exploring antecedents and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between consumers’ skepticism and green consumption in different economies by exploring antecedents and consequences of skepticism.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a cross-country approach, with data from Brazil and France, the relationships between green skepticism and downstream consequences (e.g. intention to purchase green products) were analyzed using the partial least squares path modeling with the results of 996 questionnaires.

Findings

Contradicting previous research, the authors found that in France, green skepticism represents consumers’ increased green advertising elaboration, not a disbelief in companies’ claims, and it is associated with greater intentions to make green purchases. Meanwhile, in Brazil, green skepticism represents consumers’ disbelief, which is associated to consumers greater suspicion toward (and distance from) companies’ claims in such country. This study shows that the role of skepticism and the valence of its effect on green attitudes depend on market relationships.

Research limitations/implications

The authors promote the importance of investigating the different meanings of skepticism across countries, what can spill over on research of other marketing aspects, such as advertising elaboration. Managers should consider the importance of consumers’ doubts and skepticism as a useful element that can be explored in green advertising effectiveness.

Practical implications

Managers should consider the importance of consumers’ doubts and skepticism as a useful element that can be explored in green advertising effectiveness.

Originality/value

This research examines an underexplored debate on the role of green skepticism in different economies and demonstrates the nuances green advertising impact on both markets.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 38 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

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Article
Publication date: 26 August 2014

Yi Fei Gong, Sarah Kim and Noel Harding

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether accountability pressure and ignorance with regard to the preferences and views of the superior are necessary…

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1675

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether accountability pressure and ignorance with regard to the preferences and views of the superior are necessary characteristics of the decision environment to effectively encourage pre-emptive self-criticism and elevate professional scepticism. Auditors continue to be called to account for a perceived lack of professional scepticism in the conduct of their audits. Pre-emptive self-criticism has been proposed as one means by which the level of professional scepticism exercised by auditors may be enhanced.

Design/methodology/approach

The role of accountability pressure and knowledge of the superior’s preferences in an experimental setting has been investigated, eliciting self-assessed measures of accountability pressure and manipulating whether the superior’s preferences were known or unknown. Judgements are made in the context of a preliminary analytical review setting.

Findings

It was found that greater application of pre-emptive self-criticism is associated with the presence of perceived accountability pressure, but only when the superior’s preferences are not known.

Research limitations/implications

Prior research reports that the effectiveness of prompts to be self-critical is limited. Findings suggest that pre-emptive self-criticism may be more effective in elevating professional scepticism than the findings of these studies suggest, and that the absence of an effect may be the result of low levels of accountability pressure in previous research settings. The results of this study imply that future research investigating pre-emptive self-criticism as a means of elevating professional scepticism should incorporate, as is the case in actual audit environments, accountability pressure in the decision setting.

Practical implications

Qualified by the need for further research, our study guides audit firms in their efforts to meet the expectations of regulators, oversight bodies, standard setters and the public at large for an elevated level of professional scepticism. Our findings suggest that placing auditors under accountability pressure might assist audit firms in meeting these expectations. Our findings also encourage auditors to exercise caution when making their preferences known to subordinates.

Originality/value

Despite its potential to help auditors meet demands for an elevated level of professional scepticism, pre-emptive self-criticism has received very little attention in the audit literature. Moreover, the few studies that have examined pre-emptive self-criticism find that prompts to be self-critical elevate professional scepticism in only limited circumstances. We make an original contribution towards an explanation for these findings, and guide future research by showing that accountability pressure is an important characteristic of the decision environment that should be in place before attempting to elevate professional scepticism through the encouragement of pre-emptive self-criticism.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 29 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

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