Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 247–262 | Cite as

The Nature of the Relationship between Corporate Codes of Ethics and Behaviour

  • M. Schwartz


A study was conducted in order to examine the relationship between corporate codes of ethics and behaviour. Fifty-seven interviews of employees, managers, and ethics officers were conducted at four large Canadian companies. The study found that codes of ethics are a potential factor influencing the behaviour of corporate agents. Reasons are provided why codes are violated as well as complied with. A set of eight metaphors are developed which help to explain how codes of ethics influence behaviour.

behaviour codes effectiveness employees ethics 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Schwartz
    • 1
  1. 1.The Wharton School, University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaU.S.A.

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