Business Ethics North Asia Excluding Russia

Journals Bibliography with Abstracts 1999+ to 2002

China 1

Korea 26

Japan. 28

 

China

 

"Graceful merchants": A contemporary view of Chinese business ethics; Brian Harvey; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; May 1999; Vol. 20, Iss. 1; pg. 85, 8 pgs

A report is presented on a research project on the status and understanding of business ethics in contemporary China. In the transition period from a planned to a socialist market economy, the formulation of moral rules and regulations, business ethics and professional morality have not kept up with the pace of reform. Surveys show that people are dissatisfied with the situation. Partly, the problem is due to inadequacies in the legal system, imperfect laws, and improper enforcement of laws. But also, under the socialist market economy, professional morality has been weakened, the sense of social responsibility of obligation dimmed and the phenomenon of money-worship has grown.

A comparison of perceptions about business ethics in four countries ; Lin, Carol Yeh-Yun; The Journal of Psychology [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Nov 1999; Vol. 133, Iss. 6; pg. 641

A study was conducted to compare ethical perceptions among Taiwanese Australian, Israeli, and U.S. university students. Data were gathered from a questionnaire survey of a number of business ethics dimensions. Findings reveal that students in the four countries subscribe to a differing range of ethical values with both similarities and differences. It is also revealed that in Taiwan, a profile of a pragmatic, result-oriented, and profit-oriented young generation emerged.

 

A cross-country comparison of the codes of professional conduct of certified/chartered accountants; S T Jakubowski; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 2002; Vol. 35, Iss. 2; pg. 111, 19 pgs

This research examines the extent to which similarities and differences exist in the codes of professional conduct of certified (chartered) accountants across the following countries: the US, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia, Canada (Ontario), Australia, India, and Hong Kong. These 8 countries exemplify some of the diversity in economic, political, legal, and cultural environments in which public accountants practice. The results of the study reveal that commonalities exist on some ethical rules indicating that some rules are indeed "culture free". Cross-country variations, however, exist as to the specificity and elaborateness of the rules. Such variations can be attributed to cultural and legal differences, as well as the length of time each professional organization has been in existence. Professional accountants involved in the international business must understand the implications of the decisions they make in light of the ethical codes and moral values of their counterparts in foreign countries.

 

A study of the ethical performance of foreign-investment enterprises in the China labor market; Kit-Chun Lam; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jun 2002; Vol. 37, Iss. 4; pg. 349, 17 pgs

This paper analyzes the ethical performance of foreign-investment enterprises operating in China in comparison to that of the indigenous state-owned enterprises, collectives and private enterprises. It uses both the deontological approach and the utilitarian approach in conceptualization, and applies quantitative and econometric techniques to ethical evaluations of empirical evidences. It shows that according to various ethical performance indicators, foreign-investment enterprises have fared well in comparison with local firms. This paper also tries to unravel the effect of a difference in business culture and competitive market forces on ethical performance by comparing the behavior of foreign-investment enterprises with that of the indigenous state-owned enterprises and collectives on the one hand, and with that of the indigenous private enterprises on the other.

American public relations networking encounters China's Guanxi; Carol Ann Hackley; Public Relations Quarterly, Rhinebeck; Summer 2001; Vol. 46, Iss. 2; pg. 16, 4 pgs

While public relations has a long history in the West, it is a relatively new concept in Eastern countries like China. Only a small number of American public relations firms have established offices in China. One of the most challenging barriers facing American public relations firms is dealing with China's Guanxi, defined as a strategically constructed network of personal relationships. This Chinese network is close to a private or invisible set of relations. In contrast to American PR ethics, the Chinese Guanxi, based on often-secret personal ties, may be seen as "payola" or under-the-table dealings.

 

An analysis of Hong Kong auditors' perceptions of the importance of selected Red Flag factors in risk assessment; Abdul Majid; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Aug 2001; Vol. 32, Iss. 3; pg. 263, 12 pgs

This study examined auditors perceptions of the relative level of risk of fraud and material irregularities associated with the presence of 6 red flag factors and also evaluated the quality of auditors' judgements. The study was conducted in two stages. In the first stage, subjects were asked to rank the importance of 15 factors that proxy the existence of material misstatements. Based on the responses to this questionnaire, 6 of the most important factors were identified and included in the second stage, a lens model experiment. Results showed that misstatements in prior audits and indicators of going-concern problems were perceived to be the most significant factors in alterting auditors to the risk of fraud and material irregularities. However, the two most important factors in the lens model experiment are not the same as the results of the first survey suggesting that the first group of respondents, faced with a simple questionnaire, used heuristics in their decision making.

 

An evaluation of Hong Kong's corporate code of ethics initiative; Robin Stanley Snell; Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Singapore; Dec 2000; Vol. 17, Iss. 3; pg. 493

A campaign by the Independent Commission Against Corruption, begun in 1994, led over to 1,600 Hong Kong companies and trade associations adopting codes of ethics by December 1996. This study analyzed motives for code adoption; code content; how codes were developed, supported and enforced; and code impact. Main findings were that some best practice prescriptions for code adoption were not followed, but that codes nonetheless helped preserve ethical standards and an anti-corruption image. Directions are suggested for further research into cultural effects on business ethics policy, practice and effectiveness.

 

An investigation of moral values and the ethical content of the corporate culture: Taiwanese versus U.S. sales people; Neil C Herndon Jr; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Mar 2001; Vol. 30, Iss. 1; pg. 73, 13 pgs

An empirical study using two ethics-related and three sales force outcome variables was conducted in Taiwan and compared to an existing US sample. Across the two national cultures, individual perceptions of corporate ethics appears to be a more direct determinant of organizational commitment than individual moral values. Differences between the two national cultures were found in ethics perception as it relates to moral values, job satisfaction, and turnover intention. Explanations for the differences are discussed.

 

Attitudes towards business ethics: where East doesn't meet West ,Peppas, Spero,Cross Cultural Management; Volume 9 No. 4; 2002

In culturally homogeneous groups there is a greater likelihood that values, including ethics values, of individual group members will coincide. Due to globalisation, changing demographics, and a desire for increased diversity, corporate cultures are becoming less homogeneous, thus increasing the likelihood that individuals working side by side to maximise shareholder value will not see eye to eye when it comes to business ethics. Given that many international students who earn US graduate business degrees find employment with US companies either in the US or abroad, the objective of this study was to examine whether international graduate business students, in particular Asian nationals, an d their US counterparts share similar attitudes with regard to business codes of ethics and ethics values. It was hypothesised that there would be significant differences in the attitudes of US and Asian students. It was believed that if similarities and differences with regard to ethics could be identified, universities and businesses would be better equipped to address ethics in their operations.

Business ethical perceptions of business people in east China: an empirical study ; Wu, Xinwen; Business Ethics Quarterly [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Jul 1999; Vol. 9, Iss. 3; pg. 541

A study was conducted to examine the ethical perceptions of businesspeople and the current state of business ethics in east China. Data were drawn from a survey of 800 businesspeople in 59 enterprises and interviews with 42 senior executives. Findings reveal that business ethics is a new and popular topic in east China and that there exists widespread pessimism among businesspeople about ethical standards among their superiors and coworkers and about the ethical climate of their businesses. Findings also reveal that awareness of the importance of business ethics is growing among business leaders and that the development of a market economy and the improvement of business ethics will go hand-in-hand. In addition, findings indicate that businesspeople in east China have varying ethical perceptions and that business ethics in east China are currently complex and prone to change.

 

Business ethics in Taiwan: A comparison of company employees and university students; Carol Yeh-Yun Lin; Business & Professional Ethics Journal, Troy; Summer 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 2; pg. 69

A study was conducted to develop a profile of business ethics in Taiwan. The goal was to determine whether there are significant differences between the ethical perceptions of company employees and university studetns and whether personal characteristics have significant correlations with the ethical perceptions of each group.

Business ethics: is it useful?--An empirical study of Chinese enterprise; Hong, Ying; Business Ethics [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Oct 2002; Vol. 11, Iss. 4; pg. 335

There are many ethical issues that arise during the period of transition from a planning economy to a market economy. Academics and researchers on ethics appear to think that business and ethics overlap. However, this paper addresses the relation between business and ethics from the perspective of business people. From a historical and cultural perspective, the connection between business and ethics is relevant. But in practice business people only sometimes regard this connection as useful, most of the time considering the two as being quite separate. In interviews of 21 people who are owners, chief executive officers or senior managers in state-owned or private enterprises, this study found that business ethics is indeed a dilemma for them for reasons of competitive survival. Therefore, in order to improve the ethical climate, the definition of enterprise, the guidance of government policy and the audit system all have an important role to play. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

Business ethics: Practical proposals for organisations; Gael McDonald; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; May 2000; Vol. 25, Iss. 2; pg. 169, 16 pgs

A review of ethical literature demonstrates that the material presented to date is largely based upon theoretical and empirical research. While this information has contributory value, the information produced is largely observational rather than practical. Managers are anxious to receive assistance with the mechanisms by which ethics can be integrated into their organizations. Utilizing the recent experience of the author with a large utility company in Asia committed to developing an ethical program to enhance ethical awareness in their organization, this paper intends to review current systems and procedures available to managers for integrating ethics into business. In addition to reviewing mechanisms for promoting an ethical climate, where appropriate, reference will be made to prior research and specific organizations where these practices have been used successfully. The paper concludes with a set of summary recommendations for managers embarking on the introduction of an ethical program to their organization.

Business should be its own therapist: Observing the "governance ethics" of Taiwanese enterprises; Chen-Fong Wu; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Nov 2002; Vol. 40, Iss. 4; pg. 363, 9 pgs

Taiwanese enterprises generally display a tacit acceptance and practice of globally-recognized business ethics such as the respect of human rights. Yet some Taiwanese business supervisors subscribe instead to a philosophy of leadership, dubbed pseudo-harmony, which actively seeks to evade responsibility and any conflict of interest with profitability. Meanwhile other Taiwanese entrepreneurs are even less enlightened, dictatorially upholding self-serving regimes which operate on a philosophy which is euphemistically referred to as householder management. These attitudes result in the sub-optimal development of organizational democratization within Taiwanese enterprises and hi-light the fragility of ethical leadership in Taiwan. There is a strong argument, therefore, that Taiwanese business needs to become both its own analyst and therapist if it is to enhance its governance ethics. Only this way can the nation's enterprises evolve their ethical responsibilities to stakeholders and sustain their competitiveness in a global market that increasingly demands an adherence to ethical standards.

 

Codes of ethics in Hong Kong: Their adoption and impact in the run up to the 1997 transition of sovereignty to China; Robin S Snell; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Dec 1999; Vol. 22, Iss. 4; pg. 281, 29 pgs

Following a government campaign run by the Independent Commission Against Corruption in 1994, many Hong Kong companies and trade associations adopted written codes of conduct. How and why companies responded are examined, and the impact of code adoption on the moral climate of code adopters is assessed. Content analysis suggests that the prime motive for code adoption was corporate self-defense. The prevailing themes were bribery, conflict of interest, insider information, gambling, moonlighting, accuracy of records and misuse of corporate assets. Wider social responsibility tended to be neglected. The longitudinal study over a 7-month period suggested that while moral ethos may have declined, overall standards of perceived conduct had not changed.

Confucian trustworthiness and the practice of business in China ,Business Ethics Quarterly [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Jul 2001; Koehn, Daryl;

Confucius's teachings fall under four headings: "culture, moral conduct, doing one's best, and being trustworthy in what one says" (7/25).(FN1) Trust or, more precisely, being trustworthy, plays a central role in the Confucian ethic. This paper begins by examining the Confucian concept of trustworthiness. The second part of the paper discusses how the ideal of trustworthiness makes itself felt in business practices within China. The paper concludes by raising and addressing several objections to the Confucian emphasis on trustworthiness. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

 

Consumer ethics in cross-cultural settings: Entrepreneurial implications ,Rawwas, Mohammed Y.A.; Patzer, Gordon L; Klassen, Michael L,European Journal of Marketing; Volume 29 No. 7; 1995

Entrepreneurs interested in entering different cultures and countries can be confronted with a bewildering array of differences in moral values. This situation is indicated by past research that has examined the moral judgements of American consumers, but has directed little or no effort towards investigating such attitudes in foreign-market settings with the intent to assist the entrepreneur in understanding differences across cultures. Compares attitudes of consumers in two different countries (Northern Ireland and Hong Kong) who share a common environment of colonialism. Uses a theoretical three-stage typology of moral development to establish hypotheses and explain the results of this study. The findings reveal Irish consumers to be less sensitive to consumer ethical issues and less idealistic than the Hong Kong consumers. However, there was no difference between the survey groups with regard to relativism and Machiavellianism. Culture, competition, economics, war and terrorism might be factors that explain such differences, as well as similarities, between the two consumer groups.

Consumer evaluations of unethical behaviors of Web sites: A cross-cultural comparison; Jen-Hung Huang; Journal of International Consumer Marketing, New York; 2001; Vol. 13, Iss. 4; pg. 51

Ethical issues abound when conducting business in cyberspace. This work examines several such ethical issues, including disguising advertisements as editorial content, selling private information, and sending spam messages. Data from the US and Taiwan demonstrate that unethical behavior negatively affects consumers' trust, perceptions of fairness, and commitment towards Web sites as well as their intentions of continuing to patronize them. The similarities and differences between consumers' responses to unethical Web sites in two cultures are also examined.

 

Cross-national differences in computer-use ethics: A nine-country study; Michael E Whitman; Journal of International Business Studies, Washington; Fourth Quarter 1999; Vol. 30, Iss. 4; pg. 673, 15 pgs

This study examines computer-use ethics among nine countries {Singapore, Hong Kong, US, Great Britain, Australia, Sweden, Wales, and the Netherlands}. Based on Paradice (1990), an instrument was developed containing three scales focusing on ethical attitudes toward software license infringement, use of virus programs, and misuse of corporate computing resources. Analysis indicates that there are significant differences in ethical values among nationalities for each of these scales.

Cultural and business ethics ,Seitz, Paul,Cross Cultural Management; Volume 8 No. 1; 2001

Compares and contrasts the cultures of Japan, the USA and the European Union in relation to business ethics. Focusing on three main areas - employees, environment, and consumers - states that these three items are common to any business regardless of country or culture. Shows that businesses grouped by culture can be compared and evaluated on each of these items and their priorities. Suggests the differences can then be said to stem from each region's development in business ethics.

  Culture, personality and morality A typology of international consumers' ethical beliefs; Mohammed Y.A. Rawwas; International Marketing Review, London; 2001; Vol. 18, Iss. 2; pg. 188

With business becoming more international, marketers need to understand the ethical beliefs of foreign consumers because of their effect on the outcomes of market expansion strategies. The ethical judgments of US consumers have been examined, but few studies have investigated similar attitudes in foreign-national settings. To understand the various types of consumer ethics, this exploratory study classifies ethical beliefs by linking Hofstede's cultural taxonomy to personality and ethics. This classification is achieved by comparing ethical judgments of consumers from eight different countries the USA, Ireland, Austria, Egypt, Lebanon, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Australia. Labels for the emergent cultural personality types are also developed. Strategic implications for marketers are then discussed.

Culture, personality and morality: A typology of international consumers' ethical beliefs ,Rawwas, Mohammed Y.A.,International Marketing Review; Volume 18 No. 2; 2001

With business becoming more international, marketers need to understand the ethical beliefs of foreign consumers because of their effect on the outcomes of market expansion strategies. The ethical judgments of US consumers have been examined, but few studies have investigated similar attitudes in foreign-national settings. To understand the various types of consumer ethics, this exploratory study classifies ethical beliefs by linking Hofstede's cultural taxonomy to personality and ethics. This classification is achieved by comparing ethical judgments of consumers from eight different countries the USA, Ireland, Austria, Egypt, Lebanon, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Australia. Labels for the emergent cultural personality types are also developed. Strategic implications for marketers are then discussed.

Dilemmas and dictates: managers tell their stories about international business ethics ,McNeil, Margaret; Pedigo, Kerry,Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics; Volume 13 No. 4; 2001

Explores the nature and type of ethical dilemmas experienced by western Australian managers engaged in import/export operations. Highlights the strategies used by these managers in terms of what can be done to resolve ethical conflicts in subsequent cross-cultural business activities. Employs a qualitative research method, the critical Incident Technique, to provide a rich and powerful picture of the challenges and strategies found. Generates a matrix which brings together the manager's recommendations on essential ethical actions and practices with particular ethical problems.

Doing business with dragons of different breeds: some important differences between China and Japan ,Wong, Yim Yu; Maher, Thomas E,Management Research News; Volume 21 No. 4; 1998

Warns against expecting the Japanese and Chinese to behave similarly, despite common features of their national cultures and geographical proximity. Points out that China follows Confucian-based business ethics based on connections, mutual trust and under the table dealings, whereas Japan subscribes to Shinto-based business ethics, depending on perfection, product superiority, obligation, personal honesty and self-sacrifice. Provides a brief historical overview of each country's cultural and political dynamics, then draws attention to some of the important differences between China and Japan - China preferring a command culture, pragmatism, centred on the family and using punishment as a means of ensuring conformity, whereas Japan prefers a consensus culture, sentimentality, has a strong sense of nationhood and relies on praise to achieve required performance. Suggests that western businesses keep this in mind if they are to conduct business successfully in either or both of these two countries.

Entering Guanxi: A business ethical dilemma in mainland China?; Chenting Su; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Oct 2001; Vol. 33, Iss. 3; pg. 199, 12 pgs

This paper represents an effort to distinguish between two types of guanxi prevalent in mainland China: favor-seeking guanxi that is culturally rooted and rent-seeking guanxi that is institutionally defined. Different rules of maneuvering the two types of guanxi are identified in light of Chinese cultural and business ethics. Strategies for entering guanxi in mainland China are also suggested.

Entrepreneurial spirit among East Asian Chinese; Swee Hoon Ang; Thunderbird International Business Review, New York; May/Jun 2000; Vol. 42, Iss. 3; pg. 285

This research showed that entrepreneurial spirit among East Asian Chinese youths is predicted by personality characteristics such as risk-taking propensity, persistence, and internal locus of control, as well as by motivational factors. Generally, these characteristics are not prevalent in East Asian culture. The underlying predictors, however, differed for Hong Kong and Singapore. Risk taking was a common predictor for both groups, while persistence was a predictor for Hong Kong, and internal locus of control and love for money were significant for Singapore. Entrepreneurial spirit was associated with beliefs in ethics and self-indulgence.

 

Ethical and economic evaluations of consumption in contemporary China ; Zhou Zhongzhi; Business Ethics [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Apr 2001; Vol. 10, Iss. 2; pg. 92

Ethical and economic evaluations of consumption in modern China are discussed. It is noted that the impact of social ethics and individual morality on consumer activities is important and should be considered. The dialectical relation between ethical and economic evaluations of consumption are described and a reasonable proportionality between consumption and frugality as a general guideline for consumer activities in contemporary China is proposed.

Ethical dilemmas of relationship building in China; Robin Stanley Snell; Thunderbird International Business Review, New York; Mar/Apr 2001; Vol. 43, Iss. 2; pg. 171

This paper analyzes and discusses some ethical dilemmas of doing business on the Chinese Mainland, referring to detailed accounts of the gift-giving and contract-getting experiences of 2 overseas Chinese managers in dealings with Mainland Chinese managers in the sporting and leisure industries. It compares these cases with accounts of transactions in worldwide ship repair, and with a newspaper report of a sport-related case in Hong Kong. Using a version of Kohlberg's moral-stages model, and identifying key differences between guanxi and rational-legal ethics, it explains how guanxi can become entangled with corruption in China. It links the explanations to the absence of rational-legal moral governance, and to the sociological phenomena of anomic and relative deprivation.

 

Ethical issues across cultures: managing the differing perspectives of China and the USA ,Pitta, Dennis A; Fung, Hung-Gay; Isberg, Steven,Journal of Consumer Marketing; Volume 16 No. 3; 1999

US marketers know the US standard of ethics. However, that standard can lead to ethical conflict when Americans encounter the emerging market giant, China. As smaller US companies enter China, the potential for ethical conflict increases. Reducing that potential requires knowledge. Knowing the nature and history of the two cultures can lead to an understanding of the foundation of their ethical systems. Ethics and the expectations within cultures affect all business transactions. It is vital for Western marketers to understand the expectations of their counterparts around the world. Understanding the cultural bases for ethical behavior in both the USA and China can arm a marketer with knowledge needed to succeed in cross-cultural business. Implementing that knowledge with a clear series of managerial guidelines can actualize the value of that understanding.

Ethical issues across cultures: managing the differing perspectives of China and the USA; Dennis A. Pitta; The Journal of Consumer Marketing, Santa Barbara; 1999; Vol. 16, Iss. 3; pg. 240

US marketers know the US standard of ethics. However, that standard can lead to ethical conflict when Americans encounter the emerging market giant, China. As smaller US companies enter China, the potential for ethical conflict increases. Reducing that potential requires knowledge. Knowing the nature and history of the two cultures can lead to an understanding of the foundation of their ethical systems. Ethics and the expectations within cultures affect all business transactions. It is vital for Western marketers to understand the expectations of their counterparts around the world. Understanding the cultural bases for ethical behavior in both the US and China can arm a marketer with knowledge needed to succeed in cross-cultural business. Implementing that knowledge with a clear series of managerial guidelines can actualize the value of that understanding.

 

Ethical issues in the evolution of corporate governance in China; On Kit Tam; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; May 2002; Vol. 37, Iss. 3; pg. 303, 18 pgs

China is establishing its corporate governance structures by emulating the stylized Anglo-American model. However, the country does not yet have the necessary formal and informal institutions, or the financial infrastructure to make these structures work effectively. Corruption, stock market manipulation, tax cheating, fraudulent dealing, all manners of plundering of state assets and the lack of protection of shareholders' rights are some of the more conspicuous manifestations of the ethical issues that have emerged in this mismatch. This study shows how these issues arise in the context of the characteristics of country's economic and corporate governance development. It evaluates various potential policy responses that may be implemented to improve governance effectiveness and diminish the damage from those problems.

Ethical issues in the globalization of the knowledge economy ; Lu, Xiaohe; Business Ethics [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Apr 2001; Vol. 10, Iss. 2; pg. 113

Ethical issues facing China as part of globalization of the knowledge economy are considered. It is noted that such issues include those of intellectual property protection, the exploitation of Chinese knowledge, and cultural colonization. It is indicated that these issues are complex and that there is a need for guidelines to address these issues because they are faced by countries all over the world.

 

Ethical judgement, locus of control, and whistleblowing intention: a case study of mainland Chinese MBA students ,Chiu, Randy K

The purpose of this study is to investigate the ethics of whistleblowing in Chinese society. A framework is suggested to explain whistleblowing behaviour in terms of the individual's locus of control and subjective judgement regarding the intention of whistleblowing. Hypotheses derived from these speculations are tested with data from Chinese MBA students (n = 254). Statistical analysis largely supports the hypotheses, and the implications of the findings are discussed.

Ethical judgment and ethical reasoning on business issues: a cross-lag model for university students in Hong Kong ; Cheung, Chau-kiu; College Student Journal [H.W. Wilson - EDUC]; Dec 1999; Vol. 33, Iss. 4; pg. 515

Introducing topics on business ethics in the course of international business is out of an aim of promoting students' ethical reasoning and ethical judgment regarding business issues. To evaluate if it fulfills the aim, a study surveyed 197 second-year students who attended the course in an institution in Hong Kong, both at the beginning and end of the term. Analysis of the panel data using structural equation modeling showed that there were reciprocal relationships among ethical reasoning and ethical judgment over time. Active learning about business ethics, grades, and perceived substantive complexity in the course displayed significant effects on later ethical reasoning and judgment. Overall, the findings are meaningful with reference to a cognitive-developmental framework. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

Ethics control mechanism: A comparative observation of Hong Kong companies; Theodore T Y Chen; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Apr 2001; Vol. 30, Iss. 4; pg. 391, 10 pgs

Managers with different cultural backgrounds and under different circumstances have different views on what is acceptable ethical behavior. This study attempts to determine whether major companies in Hong Kong share the same views as North American academics on what management ethical standards ought to be, and if so, whether any control mechanisms have been established to instill ethical behavior within their organizations. Notable differences between the practice in these companies and those from a similar survey conducted in North America are identified and explained. The management accountant's role in the development and implementation of such mechanisms is investigated.

Ethics vs profits; XIN ZHIMING; China Daily, New York, N.Y.; Aug 21, 2000; North American ed.; pg. 4

Full Text: Copyright China Daily Aug 21, 2000

South China has become a major haunt for illegal video disc production. Last month, China's biggest ever counterfeit video production line, capable of making 200,000 video discs a day, was uncovered in Guangdong Province, making it the 100th illegal production line to be put out of business in China.

The number of disbanded illegal manufacturers has highlighted the headway China has made in its relentless efforts to stem intellectual property rights violations.

Moreover, it shows how difficult the battle against illegal video production in China has become due to the involvement of overseas high-tech companies.

China has waged a series of fruitful battles against the production and selling of illegal video discs in recent years. But unauthorized video discs still run rampant in the market.

Some countries have accused China of inefficient management and inadequate prevention efforts. But facts show that some of those fault-finders play a part that is far from negligible in China's illegal video disc plague.

Most of the 100 production lines recently discovered were found to have come from overseas. They were made by a small number of high- tech companies based in developed countries. China has thus become the victim of international video disc smuggling on the one hand and the scapegoat for manufacturers in developed countries on the other.

Without the provision of the equipment and video programmes from abroad, which constitute the source of privately copied video discs, the situation in China would be better and easier for the Chinese authorities to police.

Those video equipment makers who are shipping their products to China for illegal use, should, as they so often tell China to, treasure commercial ethics more dearly than commercial profits.

 

Gift giving, bribery and corruption: Ethical management of business relationships in China; P Steidlmeier; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jun 1999; Vol. 20, Iss. 2; pg. 121, 12 pgs

Gift giving is a prevalent social custom in China in all areas of life: in family and in significant relationships, as well as in dealing with political authorities, social institutions and business people. For all that, from an ethical perspective, it is very difficult to know when it is proper to give or receive a gift, what sort of gift is appropriate, or what social obligations gift giving imposes. Many Westerners unfamiliar with Chinese culture often make the easy identification of gifts with bribes and allege that the Chinese are promiscuously corrupt in their business practices. Such an easy identification is, however, incorrect. The cultural and moral differences between gift giving, bribery and corruption are assessed, and guidelines are set forth for managing business relations in China.

Guanxi versus the market: Ethics and efficiency; Steve Lovett; Journal of International Business Studies, Washington; Second Quarter 1999; Vol. 30, Iss. 2; pg. 231, 17 pgs

Guanxi refers to a Chinese system of doing business on the basis of personal relationships, and it is representative of the way that business is done throughout much of the non-Western world. Guanxi is first evaluated from an ethical perspective, and an attempt is then made to shed light on the sources of its economic advantages and disadvantages through use of a simple mathematical model. Finally, it is pointed out how Eastern and Western business practices may already be converging toward systems based on more complete models of trust to deal with the conditions of progress coupled with uncertainty that form the new economic reality.

 

Guanxi's consequences: Personal gains at social cost; Ying Fan; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jul 2002; Vol. 38, Iss. 4; pg. 371, 10 pgs

This paper examines the ethical dimension of guanxi by focusing on the consequences of guanxi in business, from ethically misgiving behavior to outright corruption. Guanxi may bring benefits to individuals as well as the organizations they represent but these benefits are obtained at the expenses of other individuals or firms and thus detrimental to the society. As guanxi has an impact on the wider public other than the guanxi parties, it must be studied in the context of all stakeholders. It can be argued that guanxi is an inevitable evil under the current political and socio-economic systems in China. Its role and importance in business life will be diminished as the country moves towards an open market system.

In Hong Kong, furor as media magnate's case slides; [City Edition]; Indira A. R. Lakshmanan, Globe Staff; Boston Globe, Boston, Mass.; Feb 6, 1999; pg. A.2

In a case that is being widely criticized as setting a dangerous precedent of unequal justice, Hong Kong's justice secretary has revealed she did not prosecute a powerful media magnate implicated in fraud in part because it could have put the woman's newspaper group out of business.,,Newspaper baroness Sally Aw, chairman of Sing Tao group, was named a coconspirator last year, but never charged in a scheme to inflate circulation figures for her Hong Kong Standard newspaper to boost advertising rates.,,Secretary for Justice Elsie Leung said Thursday she did not prosecute Aw in part because there was not enough evidence that Aw intended fraud, but also because it was not in "the public interest." Aw's media group is facing financial problems, and Leung said Aw's prosecution could have caused the business to go under, costing jobs, and creating a bad image overseas.

Integrating the ethical dimension into the analytical framework for the reform of state-owned enterprises in China's socialist market economy: A proposal; Georges Enderle; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Apr 2001; Vol. 30, Iss. 3; pg. 261, 15 pgs

The discussions about the reform of state-owned enterprises are so far dominated by economic and legal considerations while the ethical dimension of this highly complex problem is being barely addressed explicitly, much less developed systematically and integrated into a broader analytical framework for companies in China. This paper is a proposal to introduce this kind of ethical consideration.

Internationalization of public accounting: Chinese experience ,Lin, Z Jun,Managerial Auditing Journal; Volume 13 No. 2; 1998

The main objective of this paper is to examine the development of public accounting in China. While a brief review of the historical evolution of Chinese public accounting is presented in the first section, the paper focuses on the major progress of internationalization of public accounting in China in the most recent years, that is, improving qualification standards for professional accountants; unifying the professional associations of public practitioners; establishing Chinese Independent Auditing Standards; enforcing professional ethics and continuous education programs; reforming the administration of CPA firms; and opening the domestic accounting market up to foreign professionals. Both the motivation and impedance to those developments are analyzed. It is concluded that, to date, the gap between Chinese public accounting and the practices in the rest of the world has been narrowed down remarkably, which will benefit both Chinese and international business communities.

Is guanxi ethical? A normative analysis of doing business in China; Thomas W Dunfee; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Aug 2001; Vol. 32, Iss. 3; pg. 191, 14 pgs

This paper extends the discussion of guanxi beyond instrumental evaluations and advances a normative assessment of guanxi. The analysis begins with a review of traditional guanxi definitions and the changing economic and legal environment in China, both necessary precursors to understanding the role of guanxi in Chinese business transactions. This review leads suggest that there are distinct types of and uses for guanxi. The potentially problematic aspects of certain forms of guanxi from a normative perspective are identified, noting among other things, the close association of particular types of guanxi with corruption and bribery. It is concluded that there are many different forms of guanxi that may have distinct impacts on economic efficiency and the well-being of ordinary Chinese citizens. Consistent with Donaldson and Dunfee (1999) a particularistic analysis of the different forms of guanxi is advocated.

Machiavellianism and Chinese banking executives in Hong Kong ,Siu, Wai-sum; Tam, Kam-chuen,International Journal of Bank Marketing; Volume 13 No. 2; 1995

Critics often attack marketing as being manipulative, unethical, or "Machiavellian" in nature. Recently, branch marketing has been widely and agressively adopted by banks for growth and expansion purposes in Pacific-rim countries. However, it is generally believed that the marketing orientation is counter to the conservative banking practices. Reports the findings of research on the Machiavellian orientation of 50 Chinese banking executives in Hong Kong and the relationships between Machiavellianism, job satisfaction and job success in the banking sector. Two instruments, the Mach IV Scale and the index of job satisfaction, were used to determine the Machiavellian orientation and the job satisfaction level of respondents. Observes significant differences between the branch managers in the banking sector and non-banking managers with regard to Machiavellian orientation. Respondents with lower Machiavellian scores tended to attain higher job titles. However, there was no significant relationship between Machiavellianism and overall job satisfaction.

Marketing ethics and behavioral predisposition of Chinese managers of SMEs in Hong Kong; Alan K M Au; Journal of Small Business Management, Milwaukee; Jul 2001; Vol. 39, Iss. 3; pg. 272, 7 pgs

The current research in business ethics fails to provide conclusive evidence for the identification of possible linkages between various individual factors and the ethical behaviors of respondents. The objectives of this study are to empirically investigate the relationships between the level of marketing ethics and various antecedent factors, and how ethical positions can be related to behavioral predisposition in the face of ethical dilemmas. The focus of this research is on small- and medium-enterprises. The theoretical model of this study is presented, as well as an in-depth explanation of the variables and the hypotheses. Testing of the hypotheses is discussed, and conclusions are made.In brief the study suggests that the following types of respondents tend to be more unethical at work than their counterparts: those who are male, who see money as omnipotent, and who have a high degree of egoism. These categories of respondents are also likely to be predisposed to act unethically in the face of an ethical dilemma at work.

Moral atmosphere and moral influence under China's network capitalism; Robin Snell; Organization Studies, Berlin; 2002; Vol. 23, Iss. 3; pg. 449

A weak legal system, weak civic accountability, market distortions, public cynicism and workforces lacking moral self-efficacy, present challenges to moral integrity in Chinese mainland enterprises. A predominantly qualitative study, in Wuhan, of organizational moral atmosphere (OMA) in two large state-owned enterprises (SOEs), two smaller, shareholder invested SOEs, two foreign-invested joint venture companies (JVCs) and one private company, indicated that felt distributive inequity may have compounded these problems. Government-championed, in-company ideological propagation of avowed business morality appeared to have little impact on OMA, owing to normative incoherence. The JVCs, by adopting the foreign partners' system of rational-legal administration and internal justice, appeared to have found a relatively more effective approach to formal moral governance. Non-JVCs had a more punishment-oriented yet less rigorous approach to regulation. Developmental and dialogue-based approaches to improving OMA were largely untried.

Moral consideration and strategic management moves: the Chinese case ,Lee, Kam-hon,Management Decision; Volume 34 No. 9; 1996

States that, although it differs from that practised in the West, moral consideration is a key factor in making strategic moves for business people in Chinese society. Substantiates this claim based on evidence from business history in China, overseas Chinese business practice and Chinese experiences today. Then, deliberates on the management implications of this phenomenon for people who want to do business with Chinese and in China.

Moral judgement and conflict handling styles among Chinese in Hong Kong and PRC ,Chow, Irene Hau-siu; Ding, Daniel Z.Q.,The Journal of Management Development; Volume 21 No. 9; 2002

This paper describes a study which investigated the relationship between stage of moral development and conflict handling styles in Chinese societies. A total of 996 undergraduate business students and 294 MBA students in Hong Kong and China participated in the study. The defining issue test was used to assess stage of moral development. Conflict handling styles were identified by Rahim's organizational conflict inventory. Results showed a significant association between stage of moral development and the use of integrating conflict-handling approach. The extent to which the Chinese culture and psychology influenced moral reasoning and conflict handling styles is discussed.

Morality and the market in China: some contemporary views ; Hanafin, John J.; Business Ethics Quarterly [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Jan 2002; Vol. 12, Iss. 1; pg. 1

A significant effect of China's rejection of a planned economy for a free market is the stimulus this has given to discussion of the relationship between morality and the market. Some Chinese believe that the introduction of a market economy has had a negative effect on public morality. Others disagree and maintain that it has had only a positive effect. Besides this particular debate there are two others. In the first of these debates, it is maintained on the one side that conduct in the market is amoral and essentially contractual or transactional in nature: a boundary must be drawn between economic conduct and conduct in other spheres of social life. Against this it is argued that ethical norms apply equally to all aspects of social life including the economy. In the second debate one side holds that the market engenders its own "ethical" norms. In opposition it is argued that the moral categories articulated in moral philosophy are applicable to behaviour in the market. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

 

Negotiating with Chinese: a cultural perspective ,Herbig, Paul; Martin, Drew,Cross Cultural Management; Volume 5 No. 3; 1998

Talks about the cultural aspects of negotiating in China and compares this with Western approaches. Focuses on cultural factors (and the dominant role of Confucianism), followed by steps in the negotiating process. Explains Confucian ethics and how that translates into everyday behaviour of how to treat and address other people. Points out that the Chinese will only do business with people they know and trust, so the importance of first building good personal relationships cannot be overstated. Suggests ways to make a good first impression, including attending banquets and other social occasions, although that opens up a further behavioural minefield. Recommends viewing doing business with the Chinese as a marriage contract based on old-fashioned courting, rather than in the West, where entering a business relationship could be deemed the equivalent of a marriage of convenience.

Obedience to authority and ethical dilemmas in Hong Kong companies; Robin S Snell; Business Ethics Quarterly, Chicago; Jul 1999; Vol. 9, Iss. 3; pg. 507, 20 pgs

This paper reports a phenomenological sub-study of a larger project investigating the way Hong Kong Chinese staff tacked their own ethical dilemmas at work. A special analysis was conducted of 8 dilemma cases arising from a request by a boss or superior authority to do something regarded as ethically wrong. In reports of most such cases, staff expressed feelings of contractual or interpersonally based obligation to obey. They sought to save face and preserve harmony in their relationship with authority by choosing between "little potato" obedience, token obedience, and undercover obedience. Only where no such obligation existed was face in relation to authority unimportant, and open disobedience chosen. In Kohlbergian terms, ethical reasoning at the conventional stages predominated in dilemmas of obedience. Findings imply that if corruption were to originate at the top, codes of conduct recently introduced into Hong Kong may be of limited effect in stalling it.

Organizational membership and environmental ethics: a comparison of managers in state-owned firms, collectives, private firms and joint ventures in China ; Fryxell, Gerald E.; World Development [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Nov 2001; Vol. 29, Iss. 11; pg. 1941

This study empirically examines the relationship between organizational type and the environmental, ethical orientation of managers in the People's Republic of China (PRC) on three dimensions-stewardship and long- and short-term utilitarianism. It was found that Chinese managers uniformly self-report strong ethical commitments to environmental protection. In addition, organizational type was found to be a significant predictor for the different ethical dimensions. Overall, managers in state-owned firms uniformly reported the strongest values. Managers in private firms, on the other hand, self-reported lower values and appeared relatively more skeptical of emergent utilitarian arguments that economic performance and environmental performance are compatible in the short term. Copyright (c) 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd

Out of the mouths of babes: Business ethics and youths in Asia; Swee Hoon Ang; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Nov 2000; Vol. 28, Iss. 2; pg. 129, 16 pgs

A model of corporate ethics and social responsibility (CESR) was developed and empirically tested among Chinese business undergraduates in Hong Kong and Singapore. As predicted, it was found that CESR beliefs were negatively related to Machiavellianism and two Confucian concepts, guanxi (interpersonal connections) and mianzi (face).

Plumbing the depths of mutual disdain: CHINESE JOINT VENTURES: Alliances between Chinese and western businesses are notoriously tricky. Rahul Jacob meets an academic whose studies and experiences illuminate the clash of cultures: ,Financial Times; London; Mar 28, 2001; Jacob, Rahul; pg. 14

Acouple of years ago, when Katharine Xin, ErPing Wang and James Walsh were finishing their academic paper on the problems that plague Sino-American joint ventures in China, a highly charged political issue drove a wedge between the close-knit team. The bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade by Nato aircraft provoked violent disagreements between Ms Xin's colleagues in numerous e-mail exchanges. Mr Walsh, who is a professor of business at the University of Michigan, believed it was an accident. Mr Wang, a professor at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing, was certain the bombing was intentional.The main fault line along which joint ventures come apart, Ms Xin and her colleagues found, was cultural. Moreover, to adapt Tolstoy's remarks on families, all unhappy joint ventures are unhappy in more or less the same way.Ms Xin believes joint ventures can work but usually only if the foreign company has control and if the management is exceptional. In her interviews she found that Americans came to respect the work ethic of Chinese employees at some ventures, while they in turn learnt to admire the efficiency of foreign managers. Even if national differences raise the risk of failure significantly, what ultimately counts may be good management - as the success of P&G, Kodak and others in China suggests.

 

Progressive capitalism or reactionary socialism? Progressive labour policy, ageing Marxism and unrepentant early capitalism in the Chinese industrial revolution ; Lee, Orlan; Business Ethics [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Apr 2001; Vol. 10, Iss. 2; pg. 97

The writers discuss progressive labor policy, Marxism, and capitalism in Chinese industry. They indicate that China is willing to accept that it must reform uneconomical state firms and forego ideological purity to do so. They also view as rational that Chinese labor wants similar protection from capitalism as progressive labor movements, and they query the extent to which new workers' rights can gain judicial remedies for individual workers.

 

Relationship marketing in China: Guanxi, favouritism and adaptation; Y H Wong; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Nov 1999; Vol. 22, Iss. 2; pg. 107, 12 pgs

One of the hot research topics today is relationship marketing. However, little research has carried out in understanding the complex concepts of Guanxi (relationship) in a Chinese society. A study to operate the constructs of guanxi is described, and the importance of guanxi in relationship development is constructed in order to present a new Guanxi framework. A study of both Western and Chinese literature provides foundations of the Guanxi perspectives. The constructs of adaptation, trust, opportunism and favor are identified. Adaptation and trust are found to be positively correlated with sales stability and quality. Adaptation is negatively correlated with relationship termination costs. Both theoretical framework and managerial implications are given.

Return of lost property vs. demand for a reward: A conflict between morality and law; Anonymous; Beijing Review, Beijing; Sep 18, 2000; Vol. 43, Iss. 38; pg. 21

Legal experts comment on a situation in which a taxi driver in Ningbo China was penalized by the city's public transit authority for returning valuable lost articles to a customer after the customer offered a reward.

Software piracy: A view from Hong Kong; Trevor Moores; Association for Computing Machinery. Communications of the ACM, New York; Dec 2000; Vol. 43, Iss. 12; pg. 88, 6 pgs

The Software and Information Industry Association (SIIA) suggests a 3-pronged attack on software piracy using legislation, effective enforcement, and education of the public. However, the most common reason offered for pirating software is the high cost of legal software. This would suggest a missing element in the SIIA's fight against software piracy, that it, a review of the cost of legal software. The extent to which either legislation, enforcement or cost would be effective in deterring the buying of pirated software can be tested by analyzing the responses of subjects to a number of ethical scenarios in which censure, availability, and cost are issues.

Some cross-cultural evidence on ethical reasoning; Judy Tsui; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; May 2001; Vol. 31, Iss. 2; pg. 143, 8 pgs

This study draws on Kohlberg's Cognitive Moral Development Theory and Hofstede's Culture Theory to examine whether cultural differences are associated with variations in ethical reasoning. Ethical reasoning levels for auditors from Australia and China are expected to be different since auditors from China and Australia are also different in terms of the cultural dimensions of long term orientation, power distance, uncertainty avoidance and individualism. The Defining Issues Tests measuring ethical reasoning P scores were distributed to auditors from Australia and China including Hong Kong and The Chinese Mainland. Results show that auditors from Australia have higher ethical reasoning scores than those from China, consistent with Hofstede's Culture Theory predictions.

Some cross-cultural evidence on ethical reasoning; Judy Tsui; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; May 2001; Vol. 31, Iss. 2; pg. 143, 8 pgs

This study draws on Kohlberg's Cognitive Moral Development Theory and Hofstede's Culture Theory to examine whether cultural differences are associated with variations in ethical reasoning. Ethical reasoning levels for auditors from Australia and China are expected to be different since auditors from China and Australia are also different in terms of the cultural dimensions of long term orientation, power distance, uncertainty avoidance and individualism. The Defining Issues Tests measuring ethical reasoning P scores were distributed to auditors from Australia and China including Hong Kong and The Chinese Mainland. Results show that auditors from Australia have higher ethical reasoning scores than those from China, consistent with Hofstede's Culture Theory predictions.

Staff job-related ethics of hotel employees in Hong Kong ,Wong, Simon Chak Keung,International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management; Volume 10 No. 3; 1998

Unethical consumer practices in Asian countries have attracted much attention from business practitioners. The availability of counterfeit products such as computer disks, fashion clothing and watches, etc., provide a negative impression to the business world. This research aims to investigate the job-related ethical beliefs of hotel employees in Hong Kong. The results show that the four-dimensional factors model as suggested by Vitell and Muncy (1992) can explain hotel employees' job-related ethics. Correlation analysis revealed that there was a significant relationship among the four factors and the general attitudinal statements. Significant differences were observed when analysing the demographic variables (i.e. age and education level) with the four factors including: no harm; unethical behaviours; actively benefiting; and passively benefiting. The results suggest the need for a clearer ethical policy for employees, and the identification of the behaviours that are viewed as "no harm" in the work environment. Hotel management will benefit by being able to identify those areas where employees need guidance and education.

The development of auditing standards and the certified public accounting profession in China ,Cooper, Barry J; Chow, Lynne; Wei, Tang Yun,Managerial Auditing Journal; Volume 17 No. 7; 2002

The organisational framework for the development of auditing in China evolved from government audit, internal audit and public audit institutions and subsequently provided the focus for services offered by the certified public accounting firms. By the mid 1990s, China's independent auditing standards were being issued, incorporating the General Independent Auditing Standard, specific auditing standards and practice pronouncements. The standards, while largely modelled on international standards, nevertheless reflected China's unique transition to a market economy. However, there are a number of issues in the public accounting profession in China that have yet to be resolved, to ensure the application of auditing standards that are in line with international norms. These issues revolve around professional competence, independence, ethical standards and auditing practice. Nevertheless, with an established credible auditing standards framework in place and the ongoing upgrading of educational and training standards of CPAs, the profession in China is heading in the right direction.

 

The effects of cultural dimensions on ethical decision making in marketing: An exploratory study; Long-Chuan Lu; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 1; pg. 91, 15 pgs

As more and more firms operate globally, an understanding of the effects of cultural differences on ethical decision making becomes increasingly important for avoiding potential business pitfalls and for designing effective international marketing management programs. Although several articles have addressed this area in general, differences along specific, cultural dimensions have not been directly examined. Differences in ethical decision making within Hofstede's (1983) cultural framework are examined. The results confirm the utility of Hofstede's cultural dimensions and place ethical decision making within an overall theoretical framework. Sales agents from a high power distance, uncertainty avoidant, Confucian, collectivist culture placed more value on company and fellow employee interests that did managers from a masculine, individualistic culture. American and Taiwanese managers did not differ in their deontological norms or on the importance that they placed on customer interests. Theoretical and managerial importance of these findings are also discussed.

The ethics and positioning of guanxi in China ,Leung, T.K.P.; Wong, Y.H.,Marketing Intelligence and Planning; Volume 19 No. 1; 2001

Guanxi has been a popular research topic but commentators do not have consensus on its ethical and positioning aspects. Attempts to tackle these two aspects and the problem of guanxi and favor according to a survey in a Sino-Hong Kong business negotiation environment. Respondents perceived that there are four dimensions within the guanxi concept, i.e. opportunism, dynamism, business interaction, and protectionism. According to these four dimensions, they can be segmented into three clusters, i.e. the preserver, the wiser, and the braver. Different clusters have different psychological approaches to Sino-foreign negotiation but there is no difference in their perceptions towards the relationship between guanxi and favor. Concludes that guanxi is basically ethical and it can be used as a positioning strategy in China. However, there is some evidence to suggest that guanxi and favor are sensitive and situation-specific, but further research is needed to confirm these claims.

The Kids Are Not All Right; The gilded youth of the coast have no memory of struggle, but also little sense of ethics or mission. China may end up paying the price.; [Atlantic Edition]; Brook Larmer; Newsweek, New York; Oct 28, 2002; International ed.; pg. 50

Full Text:

(Copyright Newsweek, Incorporated - 2002. Reproduced with permissionof copyright owner. Further reproduction prohibited withoutpermission.)

Peering out over her purple-hued Chanel sunglasses, Maggie Cong saunters into China's ritziest shopping center as if she has entered her own private oasis. Huge crowds are jostling for business on the Shanghai streets outside, but Plaza 66 is virtually empty. There are no hawkers shouting. No shoppers bantering. No buses screeching. Just the soothing strains of Muzak wafting across the marble floors, and the hushed entreaties of salespeople eager to please a prized client. Doesn't she just love the little Fendi handbag? How about the Dior dress? Or the Chanel jacket? Plaza 66 is a sanctuary for China's superrich, and Cong visits several times a week to pay homage to the gods of fashion and conspicuous consumption. The luxury brands are so irresistible, in fact, that Cong often spends more than $4,000 a month in Plaza 66--about 130 times the average salary in China.

Oh, yes, and one more thing: Cong is only 17 years old. Still wearing a retainer on her teeth, the long-haired teenager keeps a picture of Hong Kong pop idol Addison in her wallet and carries a pink plastic pacifier in her purse--for those moments, she says, "when I'm really stressed." What's to worry about? Her father made a fortune developing property in the northern city of Shenyang. But the sudden riches broke up her parents' marriage and left Cong feeling lonely, bored and unmotivated. She didn't get past 10th grade in high school, and now she's failing several classes at an expensive private college in Shanghai. More often than she likes to admit, Cong skips class to spend her daddy's cash, salving her loneliness in a lode of luxury goods. "My father always complains that I spend too much," she says. "But every time I ask for money he just gives me more."

China's little emperors--and empresses--are growing up. For the first time in recent Chinese history, there is a generation of kids reaching their 20s with no memory of hardship and loads of money: Generation Cash. Born too late to experience the ravages of the Cultural Revolution, these coddled youth have been weaned on two decades of capitalist revolution, with money, not Mao, as their god. The only children of wealthy businessmen, they carry out their lives in almost complete isolation from China's gritty realities-- shopping, partying, traveling and, yes, doing business on their own terms. Like the coastal areas where most of them live, these youth are symbols of the deep chasm that has emerged between China's rich and poor. But they are much more: they are also the inheritors of China's future. What they choose to do with their families' wealth-- the trends they set, the values they embrace, the opportunities they waste--will go a long way toward determining what sort of country China will become.

At first glance China's privileged children look like any Western elite poised to inherit their country's future. They go to the best private schools, gaining an advantage that their parents, whose education was interrupted by the Cultural Revolution, never had. They wear Armani or Tommy Hilfiger, not the monotonous blue and gray Mao suits of previous generations. Their headphones blare Britney and Eminem, not propaganda operas. And like kids across the world, their heroes are the fleeting icons of the global entertainment industry, unfettered by conservative Confucian values. So China's rich kids are selfish, confused and irresponsible. What's so bad about that? After decades of poverty and rigid control, doesn't it mean China is finally loosening up?

Well, yes. But China, like these kids, is going through a perilous transition. The country has grown at a frantic pace for the past 20 years. But massive debt, corruption and social inequities threaten to undermine its development. China now needs a generation that will handle this wealth judiciously, with greater respect for the rule of law, the principle of fairness and the idea of freedom. The previous generation of young Chinese flooded Tiananmen Square behind banners exalting the ideals of Western-style democracy. But today's kids seem content with the way things are. After all, the current system, built on a foundation of corruption and connections (guanxi), has served them just fine. "Capitalism in China is not about a -real market or the rule of law. It is all about bribery, guanxi," says Zha Jianying, author of the cultural commentary "China Pop." "And the unfairness is perpetuated by the young elites. All they care about is how to win the game, not whether it should be changed. And that's not good for China in the long run."

Guo Caijiang is playing hooky again. The only son of a Ningbo construction magnate is lounging in his hotel suite in Shanghai, smoking his way through a carton of duty-free Marlboros and reveling in his spur-of-the-moment decision to skip a week of school. Rolling in riches for as long as he can remember, Guo, 23, doesn't seem fazed by the fact that he hasn't finished ninth grade. Last year he started attending school in Australia, part of a deal he struck with his father in return for more than $50,000 a year in spending money- -and, eventually, the family business. Most of his classmates are wealthy Chinese kids, so he's hardly learned any English. He spends more time driving his gray BMW 325 and indulging his weakness for Armani and Ferragamo. Still, he gets bored easily, which is why he bought a $500 plane ticket and blithely headed to Shanghai for a week of partying. "I'm a little crazy," Guo admits.

Pampered kids like Guo hardly look like budding revolutionaries. But they could be as much of a threat to China's social structures as the Tiananmen generation was more than a decade ago. This cohort of coddled kids has discarded many of the Confucian values that have guided the country for millennia--discipline, education, filial piety--without filling the void with anything meaningful or socially redeeming. "Many children these days simply have no sense of responsibility," says one Beijing-based sociologist. "Sometimes I think we have a disaster just waiting to happen." The future of an aging China, especially on the coast, will in some ways depend on these rich young Chinese. They set trends for the rest of country. They influence the way government is run. And they will inherit more money than dozens of Chinese generations combined. What happens when such power is untempered by a sense of responsibility?

The freedom to be irresponsible is a new luxury in China, but it's coming at the expense of education. Most Chinese students still prepare feverishly for their exams, constantly reminded by their parents that a good education is the only route to success. But it's different for rich kids: they don't always care so much about school, yet their money and connections still get them preferential treatment. Their parents can afford to send them to one of China's 50,000 new private schools. In public schools, parents can often pay an extra fee--about $13,000 for three years in one Shanghai high school--to enroll their kids in a special class with the best teachers. But the privileged students rarely try very hard. "It's really unfair," says one student whose boyfriend was in the special class. "The rich kids have all the advantages, but they just fool around."

Fooling around comes easiest for the huge numbers of rich young Chinese being sent abroad to study. Many Chinese students, of course, are attending the best prep schools and universities in Europe and the United States. But the majority, like Guo, are enrolled in finishing schools that cater almost exclusively to rich Chinese. "It's easy for kids to go bad there because there1 are no parents around," says Guo, relaxing before an evening of bar- hopping. Tomorrow the mop-haired youth will jet off to a party in Shenzhen. But tonight he'll be flashing his cash at his favorite club, Park 97. "If you don't have money, nobody will look at you," he says. "In China, everything is about money."

The crowd at park 97 oozes money. Five years ago, when it opened, the tony club attracted a sedate crowd of thirtysomething expatriates. Today the clubbers are, on average, 10 years younger-- and more than a third are local Chinese. Look around and you can see young Chinese splashing out some serious dough. At the bar, a young Shanghainese woman--the daughter of a cosmetics exporter--is nursing a $5 gin-and-tonic as she waits for her expat boyfriend. At a front table, two young hipsters from Guangzhou talk about golf lessons over a bottle of expensive Italian wine. When Guo arrives, he will head straight to a VIP room and a bottle of Veuve Clicquot. The 23- year-old high-schooler only wishes he had his BMW to park out front. These rich kids might be nothing special overseas, says Ian Jin, an executive recruiter who returned from the United States two years ago. "But here, they can be kings."

And sometimes they can act like despots. Every Shanghai resident has a tale about rich young kids cruising in a tinted Mercedes, swaggering into a club and indulging in the most blatant abuses. At one club earlier this year, the son of one of Shanghai's most influential leaders struck a female club promoter with a bottle. "This guy started being incredibly violent," recalls the woman, refusing to identify herself or her attacker for fear of retribution. "And then he said: 'I'm the son of so-and-so. Just try to get me arrested!' " After spending several days in the hospital, the woman tried to find a lawyer to press charges. But nobody would take the case. They were too scared of his father's -power, she says.

For China's older generations such decadence is deeply disturbing. They were brought up to idolize Lei Feng, an everyman soldier singled out by Mao Zedong as a model of selflessness. But the young elite have no role models, so they're making it up as they go along. Their sense of impunity has been blamed for a sharp upsurge in youth crime, drug use and casual sex--vices that were all but eradicated under the stringent societal norms of Maoist China. "They are the first generation of rich kids, so they must be terribly confused," says Yue Xiaodong, a psychology professor at City University of Hong Kong who studies mainland youth. "They have nobody to guide them."

Many rich young Chinese are grasping for anything foreign. Plastic surgery is popular among twentysomething women eager to look Western with wider eyes, higher noses, bigger breasts. Many young men, like 23-year-old Xu Zhe, have acquired the trappings of global youth culture: baggy cargo pants, gray Cat shoes, Tibetan thumb ring and rust-colored dreadlocks. Xu may be instantly recognizable the world over as part of the hip-hop nation, but Chinese peasants wouldn't have a clue what to make of him. "In cultural outlook, kids these days are closing the gap with the rest of the world," says Tony Zhang, the owner of Park 97. "But they are widening the gap inside China."

It is easy to assume that this generation of wealthy Chinese kids is thoroughly Western: they speak English, wear Western clothes and seem mesmerized by all things American. But the young, rich and powerful are often the most fiercely patriotic and, when the occasion calls for it, anti-American. "They may dress the same and look the same [as Americans], but they live in a different world," says author Zha. "They grow up with a sophisticated understanding of international pop culture, but then they take in whatever the government says without question." Rich Chinese youth may be cynical about the way the business world operates, but, unlike their parents, they have a remarkable lack of skepticism about their government.

Perhaps that is because, unlike any other, this is a generation without history. Their parents suffered horribly during the Cultural Revolution. Their older friends and relatives were swept up in the tragedy of Tiananmen. But these kids seem unfazed by the past. The strains of "The East Is Red" can still be heard on the streets, but only in the ring-tones of the Nokia mobile phones of youngsters who, instead of believing in a socialist workers' paradise, long for Skechers shoes. Without the baggage of history, these youth can forge ahead with a self-confidence their parents could never muster. But they are perpetuating a system of political acquiescence and guanxi economics--even as they help break down society's old value structures.

All over the world, parents use their influence to help their children get ahead. The danger in China, however, is that connections and cash--sometimes in the form of bribes--are often the only determinants of success. And the young elites are the last ones who want to let go of that system: it helps them cut the kind of deals that will make them rich without really trying. Right now, the rest of China envies Generation Cash. But when it becomes clear that wealth doesn't trickle down to the masses--and that the system is hopelessly stacked against them--there is a risk that the hundreds of millions who don't have jobs, much less Ferraris, may rise up in protest. "There is growing anger over the polarization of society," says Stanley Rosen, a China specialist at the University of Southern California. "It could get dangerous if there's a spark to set people off."

Back in Plaza 66, Maggie Cong seems a universe away from the knotty social problems facing China. As she strolls through the opulent boutiques, Cong seems comforted by the glittery unreality of the mall. But the teenager cuts a melancholy figure, like an only child roaming through the rooms of a palace looking for something to fill her emptiness. Cong doesn't like to dwell on her past, and she has given little thought to her future--or to China's future. But she perks up when she talks about this month's vacation: a shopping spree in Hong Kong with five friends. "There's supposed to be a huge sale at the top stores,'' she says excitedly. With her background, who can blame Cong for seeking fulfillment in a shopping bag? It's the only escape she knows. But money can't buy her happiness, just as the indulgences of China's young elite can't ensure a prosperous future for China.

[Illustration],Caption: Retail therapy: Cong, 17, sometimes spends more than $4,000 a month at Plaza 66; Spoiled rich: The young elite can party all night at clubs and use connections to get by; Spring break: Guo bought a $500 ticket and blithely flew to Shanghai for a week of fun

 

The perceived role of ethics and social responsibility: An alternative scale structure; John M Etheredge; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 1; pg. 51, 14 pgs

The Perceived Role of Ethics and Social Responsibility (PRESOR) instrument was developed in the US by Singhapakdi et al. (1996) as a reliable and valid scale to measure the perceived role of ethics and social responsibility in achieving organizational effectiveness. A study was carried out to confirm the factorial structure of the instrument and to assess its reliability and validity for use in Hong Kong. Constructive replication of the exploratory factor analytic procedure of the original study with a representative sample of Hong Kong managers failed to support the hypothesized scale structure but instead suggested a different, two-factor, structure. Confirmatory factor analysis defined the alternative model which comprised two interpretable, negatively intercorrelated factorial scales. The model showed a high level of goodness-of-fit for the population and two subscales, comprised of five items respectively, were shown to have acceptable internal consistency reliability. Correlational and multiple regression analysis showed highly significant levels of association with the ethical ideology dimensions of the EPQ, used in the validation of the original scale, and with two ethical philosophy subscales derived from the ATBEQ.

The personal influence model and gao guanxi in Taiwan Chinese public relations; Yi-Hui Huang; Public Relations Review, Greenwich; Summer 2000; Vol. 26, Iss. 2; pg. 219

Research has proved the existence of a "personal influence" model of public relations in Far Eastern countries. The literature also suggests that the personal influence model is often performed in an unethical manner. Based on the discussion on the practice of the personal influence model and its unethical implication, a study aims to develop a contemporary Chinese philosophy of public relations. Five suggestions for developing a public relations strategy in China are presented, including: 1. Introduce the notion of "holism" and expand the purview of the "extended family." 2. Highlight social responsibility and public interest. 3. Emphasize disclosure. 4. Reemphasize the old tenet, Jen. 5. Highlight equality.

 

The power of money: A cross-cultural analysis of business-related beliefs; Swee Hoon Ang; Journal of World Business, Greenwich; Spring 2000; Vol. 35, Iss. 1; pg. 43

This study compared beliefs in money, business ethics and social responsibility, and guanxi; and Machiavellian personality among youths in two Asian economies - Hong Kong and Singapore - and two Western economies - Canada and Hawaii. It found interesting variations across economies. The factors that influence how much one believes in the power of money also varied.

The practice of business ethics in China: we need a parent ; Hong, Ying; Business Ethics [H.W. Wilson - SSA]; Apr 2001; Vol. 10, Iss. 2; pg. 87

The practice of business ethics in China is examined. The role of the state in China is assessed through a traditional cultural framework, and a comparison is made between the evolution of Chinese social and political forms and similar models in the West. The impact of these differences for auto-organization within China are considered. It is argued that the process of business ethics in China needs the guidance of government.

 

The relationship of ethical decision-making to business ethics and performance in Taiwan; Chen-Fong Wu; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Feb 2002; Vol. 35, Iss. 3; pg. 163, 14 pgs

This paper examines the relationship of ethical decision-making by individuals to corporate business ethics and organizational performance of three groups: small and medium enterprises, outstanding small and medium enterprises and large enterprises, in order to provide a reference for Taiwanese entrepreneurs to practice better business ethics. The survey method involved random sampling of 132 enterprises within three groups. Some 524 out of 1320 questionnaires were valid. The survey results demonstrated that ethical decision-making by individuals, corporate business ethics and organizational performance are highly related. In summary, then, high levels of organizational performance were directly attributable to high levels of applied corporate and individual ethics. Furthermore, there is a demonstrable tendency for outstanding small and medium enterprises to reject ethically unsound practices such as padded expense accounts, tax evasion and misleading advertising.

 

The study of global business ethics in East Asia: Taiwanese enterprises in Indonesia as targets; Chen-Fong Wu; Omega, Oxford; Jun 2001; Vol. 29, Iss. 3; pg. 221

A survey randomly sampled 500 Taiwanese enterprises in Indonesia. One hundred and fifty three copies (30.6%) of the questionnaire were effective. The dimensions of ethical decision-making, societal marketing, internal and external resources and country risks were found to be demonstrably influential on the global business ethics of Taiwanese enterprises. Additionally, the study explored the ethical emphasis of targeted Taiwanese enterprises on localization and human rights.

 

The study of global business ethics of Taiwanese enterprises in East Asia: Identifying Taiwanese enterprises in Mainland China, Vietnam and Indonesia as targets; Chen-Fong Wu; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Sep 2001; Vol. 33, Iss. 2; pg. 151, 15 pgs

The study explores the traits and influences on global business ethics practiced by Taiwanese enterprises in East Asia in order to provide those enterprises with a ready guide to contemporaneous standards of ethical management overseas and, in particular, in East Asia. The study randomly sampled 1496 Taiwanese enterprises in Mainland China, Vietnam and Indonesia. One questionnaire per enterprise was answered by Taiwanese owners or senior administrators. Some 375 valid responses, or 25% of the sample, were returned. Taiwanese enterprises in East Asia were found to be ethically inclined in respect of their local environments and generic human rights, though one-third of participants identified themselves as ethically lax. The study identified various influences on global business ethics viz. personnel localization, employment partnership, marketing ethics and the competitiveness of Taiwanese enterprises.

The Weizhi Group of Xian: A Chinese virtuous corporation; Po-Keung Ip; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 2002; Vol. 35, Iss. 1; pg. 15, 12 pgs

Since China opened herself up to the world in the late 1970s, privately-owned companies of different trades began to emerge along side with the state-owned enterprises. Among these successful private enterprises, a few have distinguished themselves from the rest by their distinct corporate cultures. Despite an increasing number of research on private enterprises in China, little has been done to unveil the ethical aspects of their corporate cultures. This paper focuses on one company named the Weizhi Group in Xian. The Weizhi culture is indeed the basis of a company which is referred to as virtuous corporation. An empirical survey on the values and perceptions of the employees of Weizhi Group was conducted to probe the values and perceptions of business ethics of its employees.

Trust and decision making: are managers different in the People's Republic of China and in Australia? ,Wang, Karen Yuan; Clegg, Stewart,Cross Cultural Management; Volume 9 No. 1; 2002

Examines the relationship between trust and participation in decision making and the cultural differences and similarities between Chinese and Australian managers. Finds that the level of trust placed by managers in th eir subordinates has a direct impact on the managers' attitudes towards employee participation in management. States that while there is a significant difference between Australian and Chinese managers on levels of trust in employees' psychological maturity, managers from both countries display similar trust in employees' ability to perform their jobs.

 

What can Eastern philosophy teach us about business ethics?; Daryl Koehn; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Mar 1999; Vol. 19, Iss. 1; pg. 71, 9 pgs

What, if anything, "Eastern philosophy" can teach people about business ethics is examined. The whole idea of "Eastern ethics" or so-called "Asian values" is suspect on a number of scores. It is argued that it is better to refer to specific ideas of particular thinkers influential within one country or tradition. The philosophy of two such thinkers are concentrated on - Watsuji Tetsuro of Japan and Confucius. When this more micro approach is adopted, some important lessons are learned with respect to the meaning of trust, the longterm nature of relations, and ethics that extend far beyond the limited idea of rights. These lessons are considered in the business context.

Work, ethics & banking; Anonymous; Hong Kong Business, Hong Kong; Apr 2001; Vol. 18, Iss. 226; pg. 32, 3 pgs

The danger has passed. Central to turning around the bank is a nine-member executive team that made up the core of the bank's senior management. Among its members only Simon Lee and Norman Li, two seniorvice presidents, had been in the bank before 1998. The rest came later, and they were seasoned bankers from companies like Credit Suisse, ING Baring, Standard Chartered, Chase Manhattan, and Jardine Fleming. They may not define a single banking culture; diversity may even be good.

 

Korea

 

A cross-country comparison of the codes of professional conduct of certified/chartered accountants; S T Jakubowski; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 2002; Vol. 35, Iss. 2; pg. 111, 19 pgs

This research examines the extent to which similarities and differences exist in the codes of professional conduct of certified (chartered) accountants across the following countries: the US, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia, Canada (Ontario), Australia, India, and Hong Kong. These 8 countries exemplify some of the diversity in economic, political, legal, and cultural environments in which public accountants practice. The results of the study reveal that commonalities exist on some ethical rules indicating that some rules are indeed "culture free". Cross-country variations, however, exist as to the specificity and elaborateness of the rules. Such variations can be attributed to cultural and legal differences, as well as the length of time each professional organization has been in existence. Professional accountants involved in the international business must understand the implications of the decisions they make in light of the ethical codes and moral values of their counterparts in foreign countries.

Cultural influences on agency practitioners' ethical perceptions: A comparison of Korea and the U.S.; Young Sook Moon; Journal of Advertising, Provo; Spring 2000; Vol. 29, Iss. 1; pg. 51, 15 pgs

Patterns of cross-cultural differences in ethical perceptions can be explained by Hofstede's typology of cultural dimensions. To test hypothesized differences, researchers conducted a survey of practitioners at Korean advertising agencies and compared their responses with results from previous surveys in the US. Evaluations of ethical issues in hypothetical scenarios are consistent with the 2 cultures' relative levels of masculinity/femininity and individualism/collectivism. Agency practitioners in the 2 countries also vary in the ethical problems they face in their daily work. Differing perceptions that the problems are a concern of top management, or are a hindrance to performance and relations with coworkers, are consistent with relative levels of power distance, long-term orientation, and individualism/collectivism. The findings illustrate the influence of cultural dimensions on ethical perceptions and practices in the advertising industry.

The effect of moral philosophy and ethnocentrism on quality-of-life orientation in international marketing: A cross-cultural comparison; Dong-Jin Lee; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 1; pg. 73, 17 pgs

The effects of moral philosophy and ethnocentrism on quality of life orientation in international marketing is examined. A cross-cultural comparison of ethical values between Koreans and Americans is also provided. International quality-of-life (IQOL) orientation refers to marketers' disposition to make decisions to enhance the well-being of consumers in foreign markets while preserving the well-being of other stakeholders. It is hypothesized that marketers' moral philosophy and ethnocentrism influence the development of marketers' IQOL. Specifically, the higher the IQOL orientation of international managers, the higher their moral idealism, the higher their moral relativism, the lower their ethnocentrism. Also, it is hypothesized that American managers are likely to score higher on moral relativism but lower on moral idealism compared to their Korean counterparts. Also, Korean managers are expected to be more ethnocentric than American managers. Data were collected from business professionals who enrolled in professional MBA courses both from the US and Korea. The results provided support for the hypothesized relationships. Managerial implications of these relationships are discussed.

The effect of moral philosophy and ethnocentrism on quality-of-life orientation in international marketing: A cross-cultural comparison; Dong-Jin Lee; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 1; pg. 73, 17 pgs

The effects of moral philosophy and ethnocentrism on quality of life orientation in international marketing is examined. A cross-cultural comparison of ethical values between Koreans and Americans is also provided. International quality-of-life (IQOL) orientation refers to marketers' disposition to make decisions to enhance the well-being of consumers in foreign markets while preserving the well-being of other stakeholders. It is hypothesized that marketers' moral philosophy and ethnocentrism influence the development of marketers' IQOL. Specifically, the higher the IQOL orientation of international managers, the higher their moral idealism, the higher their moral relativism, the lower their ethnocentrism. Also, it is hypothesized that American managers are likely to score higher on moral relativism but lower on moral idealism compared to their Korean counterparts. Also, Korean managers are expected to be more ethnocentric than American managers. Data were collected from business professionals who enrolled in professional MBA courses both from the US and Korea. The results provided support for the hypothesized relationships. Managerial implications of these relationships are discussed.

 

Japan

 

A phenomenological approach to inquiring into an ethically bankrupted organization: A case study of a Japanese company; Nobuyuki Chikudate; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Nov 2000; Vol. 28, Iss. 1; pg. 59, 14 pgs

A phenomenological approach to the study of the companies that committed corporate crimes is introduced. First, the epistemology of normative control, which is based on the philosophical ground of phenomenology, sociology of knowledge, ethnomethodology, Habermas's normative theories, and Foucault's normalizing discourse in the context of organizations, was developed. Next, the procedures are shown for conducting a qualitative and phenomenological empirical case study of an aggressive Japanese company whose name appeared in the media for its scandal in Tokyo. The inquiry revealed the generative mechanism of normative control and the patterns of construction social reality of workplaces in a Japanese company.

An empirical investigation of Japanese consumer ethics; Robert C Erffmeyer; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Jan 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 1; pg. 35, 16 pgs

One of the gaps in the current international marketing literature is in the area of consumer ethics. Using a sample drawn from Japanese consumers, individuals' reported ethical ideology and their perception of a number of different ethical situations in the realm of consumer behavior are investigated. Comparisons are then made across several demographic characteristics. The results reveal differences which provide theoretical support for expanded research in the area of cross-cultural/cross-national consumer ethics and highlight the need for managers to consider possible differences in the ethical behavior of consumers when entering a new international market. In addition, current knowledge in international marketing ethics is extended by utilizing a research design and survey instruments similar to precious studies on consumer ethics.

Attempting to institutionalize ethics: Case studies from Japan; Chiaki Nakano; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Feb 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 4; pg. 335, 9 pgs

A series of survey studies on corporations' institutionalization of ethics has been done in the US and Japan. Among them, one Japanese study suggests that company policy is the most influential factor in managers' ethical decision-making and behavior. This empirical evidence suggests that, in Japan, company efforts to institutionalize ethics are effective in improving business behavior. This is examined by describing three case studies of Japanese managers' ethical decision-making.

Cognitive moral development and Japanese procurement executives: Implications for industrial marketers; John B Ford; Industrial Marketing Management, New York; Nov 2000; Vol. 29, Iss. 6; pg. 589

With the importance of Japan to the world economy and the attractiveness of Japanese corporations as buyers of US industrial products, it is vital for industrial marketers to understand the ethical predispositions of Japanese purchasing executives. A ground-breaking sample of 222 purchasing executives from the largest Japanese corporations was obtained and assessed in terms of their cognitive moral development (CMD). Findings indicated: 1. The Japanese were more focused on the conventional level than on the post-conventional level of CMD. 2. Older executives were less concerned with group harmonization. 3. Upper management focused on less on mutually satisfying outcomes and group harmonization than middle or lower levels. Benchmarking against previous research involving Chinese and American business executives, this study found that the Japanese approach moral judgment differently from wither of the populations. Details are presented.

Collective myopia and disciplinary power behind the scenes of unethical practices: A diagnostic theory on Japanese organization; Nobuyuki Chikudate; The Journal of Management Studies, Oxford; May 2002; Vol. 39, Iss. 3; pg. 289

This study draws on multiple writings to offer a new conceptualization, one that aids in the assessment of unethical practices. Traditionally phenomenology and the sociology of knowledge have focused on perception, cognition and common sense. Ethnomethodology has focused on procedural infrastructures of ordinary lives. This article combines concepts and ideas from these methodologies in the general concept of "collective myopia" with some Habermasian and Focaultian influences. The conceptualization focuses on normative controls operating behind the scenes of unethical practices in Japanese business. The contributions of national culture to the crimes are omitted as much as possible to establish a position of general theory. The conceptualization is then applied to examine the case of the Dai-ichi Kangyo Bank, which was linked to racketeering in 1997.

Cultural and business ethics ,Seitz, Paul,Cross Cultural Management; Volume 8 No. 1; 2001

Compares and contrasts the cultures of Japan, the USA and the European Union in relation to business ethics. Focusing on three main areas - employees, environment, and consumers - states that these three items are common to any business regardless of country or culture. Shows that businesses grouped by culture can be compared and evaluated on each of these items and their priorities. Suggests the differences can then be said to stem from each region's development in business ethics.

 

Election rigging in Japan; Jon Leland; Multinational Monitor, Washington; Mar 1999; Vol. 20, Iss. 3; pg. 6, 1 pgs

Corporate election-rigging in Japan has had a major impact on local elections and government policy. Local political activists are outraged with the corporate undermining of their democracy.

Making ethical judgements: A cross-cultural management study; Terence Jackson; Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Singapore; Dec 2000; Vol. 17, Iss. 3; pg. 443

This article reports the results of a cross-cultural empirical study across 7 countries which investigates the differences in the way managers structure their ethical judgments regarding the loyalty of a corporation to its employees, the loyalty of employees to the corporation, and the loyalty of employees towards their co-workers. Managers' ethical judgments from the East Asian "tiger" countries of Japan, Korea and Hong Kong are compared with those from the "Anglo" countries of the US and Australia, and with those from the "transitional" countries of Asiatic Russia and Poland. As hypothesized, cross-cultural differences were indicated for both the structure and content of managers' ethical judgments, which have important implications for the way organizations are effectively managed both nationally, regionally and internationally.

Moral decision making in international sales negotiations ,Zarkada-Fraser, Anna; Fraser, Campbell,The Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing; Volume 16 No. 4; 2001

International sales negotiations are fast becoming a major part of the marketeer's mandate in an increasingly globalised economy. To be successful in that role, managers need to be aware of the limits of acceptability of their behaviours, able to anticipate their counterparts' actions and understand the motivations behind them. Presents a cross-national study of 332 experienced sales negotiators' perceptions in Australia, the USA, the UK, Japan, Russia and Greece. It explores the degree to which different tactics are considered morally acceptable in each country and how the decision-making frameworks the managers employ affect their evaluation. The results demonstrate that, although moral acceptability of specific practices, the overall level of tolerance and the effect of each one of a set of decision-making variables vary among different nationalities, the mechanism of the evaluation can be analysed by a single explanatory model.

Principled leadership and business diplomacy A practical, values-based direction for management development; Manuel London; The Journal of Management Development, Bradford; 1999; Vol. 18, Iss. 2; pg. 170

This paper introduces the concept of business diplomacy as a way to implement values-based, ethical leadership. Drawing on the Japanese concept of kyosei, business diplomats take responsibility for themselves and others and treat people with respect and kindness while they simultaneously attempt to be entrepreneurial, add business value, and make a profit. This paper reviews the strategies and tactics of business diplomacy and provides case examples of how to be diplomatic and ethical in difficult situations. The paper concludes with recommendations for how to establish an organizational culture based on business diplomacy.

The concept of trustworthiness: A cross-cultural comparison between Japanese and U.S. business people; Masami Nishishiba; Journal of Applied Communication Research, Annandale; Nov 2000; Vol. 28, Iss. 4; pg. 347, 21 pgs

A card sorting procedure was used to explore the structure of Japanese and American business people's concept of trustworthiness. Hierarchical cluster analyses and multidimensional scaling indicated that Japanese emphasize organizational commitment, while Americans emphasize personal integrity in judging another's trustworthiness. Differences may help explain persistent miscommunication about trustworthiness between Japanese and US colleagues.

The implication of language style in business communication: focus on English versus Japanese ,Kameda, Naoki,Corporate Communications: An International Journal; Volume 6 No. 3; 2001

An advisory group to the Prime Minister proposed early this year that Japan should consider making English its official second language. This proposal has proven highly controversial, igniting a national debate. While the philosophical debate rages, many in the business community say they face an urgent need to use English to cope with increasing economic globalization. Both the proposal and the claim presuppose that Japanese cannot communicate well simply because they cannot use English well. However, we should understand that linguistic capability and communicative competency are two different things. To improve their communicative competency in business situations, Japanese businesspeople should first be aware of the unique characteristics of their own language habits which are deeply rooted in their ethics. If properly coordinated with English, a widely used international business language, a human-oriented Japanese communication style may find its way into the global business communication of the twenty-first century.

The maturing of the Japanese economy: Corporate social responsibility implications; Richard E Wokutch; Business Ethics Quarterly, Chicago; Jul 1999; Vol. 9, Iss. 3; pg. 527, 14 pgs

Corporate social responsibility in Japan today within the context of the paradigm of the moral unity of business is examined. Under this paradigm, business is expected to operate under the same set of moral standards operative in other societal institutions. It is suggested that a micro moral unity characterizes Japan - business activity is linked to that society's moral values but only within carefully circumscribed communities of interest. Because of the strains brought on by the maturing of the Japanese economy, the negative consequences of this micro moral unity are now becoming apparent. A new paradigm will be required to address these challenges. A possible foundation for such a paradigm, based on the emerging notion of kyosei (living and working together for the common good), is discussed.

What can Eastern philosophy teach us about business ethics?; Daryl Koehn; Journal of Business Ethics, Dordrecht; Mar 1999; Vol. 19, Iss. 1; pg. 71, 9 pgs

What, if anything, "Eastern philosophy" can teach people about business ethics is examined. The whole idea of "Eastern ethics" or so-called "Asian values" is suspect on a number of scores. It is argued that it is better to refer to specific ideas of particular thinkers influential within one country or tradition. The philosophy of two such thinkers are concentrated on - Watsuji Tetsuro of Japan and Confucius. When this more micro approach is adopted, some important lessons are learned with respect to the meaning of trust, the longterm nature of relations, and ethics that extend far beyond the limited idea of rights. These lessons are considered in the business context.