Money, Emotions, and Ethics Across Individuals and Countries

Long Wang, J. Keith Murnighan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 8 Citations

Abstract

This article presents two separate but closely related studies. We used a first sample to investigate the relationships among individuals’ reports of their income and their subjective well-being, and their approval of unethical behavior in 27 countries and a second sample to investigate the relationship between corruption in 55 countries and their populace’s aggregated feelings of subjective well-being (happiness). Analysis of data from 27,762 working professionals showed that, although reported feelings of subjective well-being were negatively related to their approval of unethical behaviors, income was positively related to their approval of unethical behaviors. In addition, the effects for feelings of subjective well-being were particularly strong for high-income people. Analyses also showed that, after controlling for economic development and other country-level factors, corruption was negatively related to a country’s feelings of happiness. These findings suggest that feelings of subjective well-being may lead to more ethical, less corrupt behavior and that the tolerance of unethical, corrupt behavior may lead to less collective happiness and subjective well-being.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages163-176
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Volume125
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Fingerprint

money
emotion
well-being
moral philosophy
happiness
income
corruption
tolerance
Subjective well-being
Emotion
Subjective Well-being
Unethical behavior
economics
Income
Happiness
Corruption

Keywords

  • Corruption
  • Culture
  • Emotions
  • Ethics
  • Income
  • Subjective well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law

Cite this

Wang, Long ; Murnighan, J. Keith. / Money, Emotions, and Ethics Across Individuals and Countries. In: Journal of Business Ethics. 2014 ; Vol. 125, No. 1. pp. 163-176
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Money, Emotions, and Ethics Across Individuals and Countries. / Wang, Long; Murnighan, J. Keith.

In: Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 125, No. 1, 01.01.2014, p. 163-176.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Wang L, Murnighan JK. Money, Emotions, and Ethics Across Individuals and Countries. Journal of Business Ethics. 2014 Jan 1;125(1):163-176. Available from, DOI: 10.1007/s10551-013-1914-9