Cornelissen, G., Bashshur, M. R., Rode, J., & Le Menestrel, M. (2013). Rules or Consequences? The Role of Ethical Mind-Sets in Moral Dynamics. Psychological Science, 24(4), 482-488.
Recent research on the dynamics of moral behavior has documented two contrasting phenomena – moral consistency and moral balancing. Moral balancing refers to the phenomenon whereby behaving (un)ethically decreases the likelihood of doing so again at a later time. Moral consistency describes the opposite pattern – engaging in (un)ethical behavior increases the likelihood of doing so later on. Three studies support the hypothesis that individuals’ ethical mindset (i.e., outcome-based versus rule-based) moderates the impact of an initial (un)ethical act on the likelihood of behaving ethically in a subsequent occasion. More specifically, an outcome-based mindset facilitates moral balancing and a rule-based mindset facilitates moral consistency.
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Gert Cornelissen is Associate Professor at Pompeu Fabra University’s Department of Economics and Business. He has a PhD from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. His research papers have been published in journals including Psychological Science, Personality and Social Psychology Bulleting, and the International Journal of Research in Marketing.
Prof. Cornelissen teaches Consumer Behavior at the Barcelona School of Management.
Marc Le Menestrel is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Business of University Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona, Spain) and Visiting Professor of Ethics at the Social Innovation Center of INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France). He holds a Ph.D. in Decision Sciences from INSEAD.
Prof. Le Menestrel teaches Rationality and Ethical Values at the Barcelona School of Management
Department of Economics and Business
Universitat Pompeu Fabra and Barcelona School of Management
Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ
Michael R. Bashshur
Singapore Management University