East Meets West: A Meta-Analytic Investigation of Cultural Variations in Idealism and Relativism

  title={East Meets West: A Meta-Analytic Investigation of Cultural Variations in Idealism and Relativism},
  author={D. Forsyth and Ernest H O'Boyle and Michael A. McDaniel},
  journal={Journal of Business Ethics},
Ethics position theory (EPT) maintains that individuals’ personal moral philosophies influence their judgments, actions, and emotions in ethically intense situations. The theory, when describing these moral viewpoints, stresses two dimensions: idealism (concern for benign outcomes) and relativism (skepticism with regards to inviolate moral principles). Variations in idealism and relativism across countries were examined via a meta-analysis of studies that assessed these two aspects of moral… Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

Rules, standards, and ethics: Relativism predicts cross-national differences in the codification of moral standards
This research examines the relationship between the code of ethics adopted by businesses in a country and the ethics positions of the inhabitants of that country. Ethics Position Theory (EPT)Expand
The Role of Moral Philosophies and Value Orientations in Consumer Ethics: a Post-Transitional European Country Perspective
The purpose of this paper is to broaden knowledge of the antecedents of consumer ethics and examine them in a novel setting. Thus, two complementary pairs of variables, i.e., moral philosophiesExpand
A Relativistic Approach to Moral Judgment in Individuals: Review and Reinterpretation
In Ethics Position Theory, relativism is the degree to which people believe that universal moral rules should not always be applied unwaveringly. Researchers often predict that highly relativisticExpand
Moral Philosophy, Materialism, and Consumer Ethics: An Exploratory Study in Indonesia
Although the ethical judgment of consumers in the United States and other industrialized countries has received considerable attention, consumer ethics in Asian-market settings have seldom beenExpand
The effects of idealism and relativism on the moral judgement of social vs. environmental issues, and their relation to self-reported pro-environmental behaviours
The findings suggest that Ethics Position Theory could have a strong potential for defining moral differences between environmental attitudes and behaviours, capturing the moral drivers of an attitude-behaviour gap, which continuously stands as a barrier in motivating people to become more pro-environmental. Expand
The Impacts of Ethical Ideology, Materialism, and Selected Demographics on Consumer Ethics: An Empirical Study in China
This study attempts to investigate the relationships among the ethical beliefs of Chinese consumers and orientations based on attitudinal attributes: materialism and moral philosophies (idealism andExpand
Ethical relativism vs absolutism : research implications
Purpose – The constructs of relativism and absolutism have a significant role to play in the development of ethical theory; however, they are commonly simplified in their depictions and areExpand
Individual differences in ethics positions: The EPQ-5
We revised the Ethics Position Questionnaire (EPQ), which measures variations in sensitivity to harm (idealism) and to moral standards (relativism). Study 1 identified the core components of theExpand
Can Ethical Ideologies Predict Prejudice?
Idealism and relativism were designed to assess different ethical ideological views. Their relation with attitudes toward a variety of outgroups has not been previously studied. Understanding howExpand
Cultural variations and ethical business decision making: a study of individualistic and collective cultures
This study aims to examine the ethical beliefs and moral philosophical typologies, the relative effect of religiosity on personal ethical beliefs and behavior of the collectivist and individualisticExpand


Social Dominance and Ethical Ideology: The End Justifies the Means?
  • M. Wilson
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • The Journal of social psychology
  • 2003
SDO showed no consistent association with relativism, a belief that the moralities of actions are not comparable, and might be described as “ruthless” in their pursuit of desirable goals and indifferent about whether the morality of different actions can be compared or even matter. Expand
Measuring Ethical Ideology in Business Ethics: A Critical Analysis of the Ethics Position Questionnaire
Individual differences in ethical ideology are believed to play a key role in ethical decision making. Forsyth’s (1980) Ethics Position Questionnaire (EPQ) is designed to measure ethical ideologyExpand
Moral philosophies of marketing managers A comparison of American , Australian , and Malaysian cultures
A recent article pointed out that `̀ past research has paid relatively little attention to the sources of individuals’ moral philosophies from either a conceptual or an empirical standpoint’’ andExpand
Is Cross-Cultural Similarity an Indicator of Similar Marketing Ethics?
This study compares Australian marketers with those in the United States along lines that are particular to the study of ethics. The test measured two different moral philosophies, idealism andExpand
Idealism, Relativism, and the Ethic of Caring
Abstract In this study, we investigated Gilligan's (1982) theory of moral thought. Two hundred sixteen American college students (73% women and 20.5% black) completed two questionnaires designed toExpand
A Cross‐cultural Study of Moral Philosophies, Ethical Perceptions and Judgements: A Comparison of American and Thai Marketers
Moral philosophers and marketing ethicists generally agree that variations in moral judgements exist between different cultures. Compares American marketers with Thai marketers with respect to theirExpand
The Effect of Organizational Culture and Ethical Orientation on Accountants' Ethical Judgments
This paper examines the relationship between organizational ethical culture in two large international CPA firms, auditors' personal values and the ethical orientation that those values dictate, andExpand
Lambs Among Lions? The Impact of Ethical Ideology on Negotiation Behaviors and Outcomes
Relationships between individuals' ethical orientations (classified on dimensions of idealism and relativism), their negotiation strategies, their views of ethically ``marginal'' tactics, and theirExpand
Moral philosophies of marketing managers
A recent article pointed out that “past research has paid relatively little attention to the sources of individuals’ moral philosophies from either a conceptual or an empirical standpoint” andExpand
Ethical judgments and intentions: a multinational study of marketing professionals
A multinational study of marketing professionals was conducted in the US, England, Spain and Turkey. Respondents from these countries were compared on various ethics-related constructs such asExpand