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Laddered motivations of external whistleblowers: The truth about attributes, consequences, and values

Laddered motivations of external whistleblowers: The truth about attributes, consequences, and values

Park, Huengsik, Vandekerckhove, Wim ORCID: 0000-0002-0106-7915, Lee, Jaeil and Joowon, Jeong (2018) Laddered motivations of external whistleblowers: The truth about attributes, consequences, and values. Journal of Business Ethics. ISSN 0167-4544 (Print), 1573-0697 (Online) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-018-4082-0)

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore the motivational structures of external whistleblowers involved in the decision to blow the whistle by applying MEC theory and the laddering technique. Using both soft and hard laddering methods, data were collected from 37 Korean external whistleblowers. Results revealed that the means-end chain of external whistleblow-ers was the hierarchical linkage among two concrete attributes (the power of external whistleblowing to make changes and its warning about the seriousness of wrongdoing to the public), two functional consequences (correcting a wrongdoing and making those who violated laws admit their offenses), and one terminal value (the truth). The extant whistleblowing literature has either made assumptions about whistleblowers’ motivations when developing models or has drawn indirect inferences from measures of other variables. Our study is the first with an explicit and empirical focus on whistleblowers’ motivations. The findings provide evidence of the motivational structures of external whistleblowers that consist of a set of complex paths linked by multi-layered motivators. This research will be helpful in designing and reviewing whistleblowing programs for organizations, regulatory agencies, and journalists.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: external whistleblowers; motivation; means-end chain theory
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Faculty of Business > Centre for Work and Employment Research (CREW) > Work & Employment Research Unit (WERU)
Faculty of Business > Department of Human Resources & Organisational Behaviour
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2019 09:54
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: GREAT 3
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/22433

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