Title: Business ethics: a study of Portuguese social representation of business ethics

Authors: Alvaro Gijón Francis; Lisete Mónico; Leonor Pais; Nuno Rebelo Dos Santos

Addresses: Faculdade de Psicologia e de Ciências da Educação, Universidade de Coimbra, Portugal ' Faculdade de Psicologia e de Ciências da Educação, Universidade de Coimbra, Portugal ' Faculdade de Psicologia e de Ciências da Educação, Universidade de Coimbra, Portugal ' Departamento de Psicologia, Universidade de Évora, Portugal

Abstract: Ever since the 1980s, the business ethics field has gone through significant changes. There is now a vast body of business ethics literature concerned with diverse topics and themes, but relating the field of business ethics with social representations is not one of them, with this article being the first, to our knowledge, to do so with a Portuguese sample (N = 2,735). Attempting to provide a 'bridge' between theory and reality, we proceeded with this study, trying to discover the social representation of business ethics in Portuguese workers using the free evocation test and applying Abric's central nucleus theory. The results show a central core organised around the concepts of 'respect', 'justice', 'honesty', 'equality', 'code of conduct', 'confidentiality' and 'fair competition'. While some of the core concepts of business ethics are directly found in the literature, others were not, pointing to a possible partition between theory and reality.

Keywords: EVOC; business ethics; social representations; theory of the central nucleus.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBGE.2018.095415

International Journal of Business Governance and Ethics, 2018 Vol.13 No.1, pp.85 - 106

Available online: 01 Oct 2018 *

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