Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 156, Issue 1, pp 241–256 | Cite as

Reexamining the “Discussion” in the Moral Dilemma Discussion

  • Rommel O. SalvadorEmail author
Original Paper


Cumulative evidence points to the effectiveness of moral dilemma discussion as a pedagogical strategy. However, much of the extant empirical research has been limited to investigating its effect on moral judgment. In addition, the potentially distinct effects of the two major components of the intervention, the intrapersonal contemplation and the interpersonal discussion that follows, have been barely examined. Using the Trolley Problem, this quasi-experimental study (N = 115) examined the effectiveness of moral dilemma discussion and of intrapersonal moral dilemma contemplation in promoting prosocial intentions among individuals in the context of a product-harm situation. The results confirm that moral dilemma discussion positively influences some forms of prosocial intentions. The results also suggest that moral dilemma discussion is not necessarily more effective than intrapersonal moral dilemma contemplation in promoting prosocial intentions.


Moral dilemma discussion Prosocial intentions Business ethics education 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ManagementCalifornia State University, FullertonFullertonUSA

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