Journal of Business and Psychology

, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 533–541 | Cite as

Resistance to Socialization into Organizational Corruption: A Model of Deontic Justice

  • Constant D. BeugréEmail author



The purpose of this article is to develop a deontic model of corruption in organizations. This model intends to explain newcomers’ resistance to socialization into corrupt practices.


This article uses deontic justice as a conceptual framework to indicate whether adherence to deontic principles could help reduce the tendency to be engaged in corrupt practices in the workplace.


The fundamental premise of the deontic model of organizational corruption is that newcomers with strong deontic principles would be more likely to resist socialization into corruption and take actions to reduce the corrupt nature of their organization than those with weak deontic principles. The model also suggests that newcomers with strong deontic principles would be more likely to leave corrupt organizations than those with weak deontic principles.


To assess the impact of deontic principles on resistance to socialization into corruption, organizational scholars could develop a scale measuring people’s adherence to deontic principles—a deonance scale. The deontic model of organizational corruption could be used to train employees in considering fairness as a moral obligation. To the extent that employees consider fairness as a moral duty, they would be less likely to engage in corrupt practices.


This article is the first to the best of my knowledge to blend together the literature on the theory of deontic justice and the literature on corruption in organizations. In this regard, the article breaks new grounds that could help organizational scholars study corruption through the lens of fairness and justice.


Corruption Deontic agents Deontic justice Deontic theory Organizational corruption Organizational justice Socialization to corruption 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Delaware State University College of BusinessDoverUSA

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