Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 55, Issue 4, pp 307-320

First online:

Organizational Ethics in Developing Countries: A Comparative Analysis

  • Jamal A. Al-KhatibAffiliated withDepartment of Marketing, College of Business, University of St. Thomas Email author 
  • , Mohammed Y. A. RawwasAffiliated withDepartment of Marketing, University of Northern Iowa
  • , Scott J. VitellAffiliated withDepartment of Marketing, College of Business, University of Mississippi

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


Relationships with one’s employees, co-workers, or superiors create ethical dilemmas. Employees’ judgments and ethical perceptions have been extensively studied in Western cultures, but not in developing countries. The purpose of this investigation is to examine employees’ self-reported work-related ethics and compare them to their perceptions of co-workers’ and top managements’ along various morally challenging situations in three developing countries’ organizations. Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Oman, known as the Gulf countries, were selected as the research setting – and provided the sampling frame – for this study. The results suggest that respondents perceived all ethically challenging situations as unethical and had significant differences among themselves regarding the ethical perceptions of self, as compared to perceptions of peers’, and top managements’. Discussion of the results and implications are provided.


business ethics Arab employees Saudi Arabia Kuwait Oman