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A new approach to examining whistle-blowing: the influence of cognitions and anger.

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Introduction

Articles about whistle-blowing continue to appear on a regular basis in the popular press as well as in managerial publications and the academic literature (e.g., Delikat, 2007; Leonard, 2007; Rehg, Miceli, Near, and Van Scotter, 2008). Evidence shows that whistle-blowing occurs frequently, and that organizational wrongdoing is prevalent and can be very costly. For example, in 2006, cases of fraud in U.S.-based companies accounted for losses of $650 billion. One third of these cases were discovered through information from whistle-blowers. In fact, tips from whistle-blowers proved more effective in revealing fraud than any other methods, such as such as internal audits, internal controls, and external audits (Sweeney, 2008). However, reports about fraud are not the most common example of whistle-blowing. According to a comprehensive study of 277,000 calls to whistle-blowing hotlines from 2003-2007 in nine major U.S. industries, the greatest number of calls (50%) were about personnel management incidents (Security Executive Council, 2007).

Discussing whistle-blowing and the motivations of whistle-blowers can produce heated controversy. While some whistle-blowers may be viewed as courageous heroes, others can be viewed as disgruntled or selfish trouble-makers. Yet, regardless of one's personal views about whistle-blowing, managers and researchers must take an objective and focused perspective on this issue due to its legal, ethical, and practical imperatives (Barnett, 1992). For example, the U.S. based Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 has affected companies throughout the world and has important implications for whistle-blowing. This Act specifically instituted new protections for whistle-blowers, yet research continues to show that whistle-blowing usually results in unpleasant and unrewarding outcomes for whistle-blowers. Whistle-blowers often are viewed as finks instead of heroes; are retaliated against through personal threats; are ostracized, dismissed, or demoted; and often suffer in their careers due to damaged reputations (Delikat, 2007; Rosenblatt, 1997).

Given such common negative outcomes, why do certain individuals step up and decide to blow the whistle? This question has intrigued managers and researchers alike, because understanding the whistle-blowing decision-making process helps create policies and procedures resulting in the greatest ethical benefits for organizations and society. However, answering this question has proved challenging, and much still remains to be understood about whistle-blowing (Gundlach, Douglas, and Martinko, 2003; Near and Miceli, 2008).

Addressing this need, the purpose of this study is to further our understanding of whistle-blowing by examining it empirically with a new theoretical approach. Using attribution theory (Weiner, 1986, 1995, 2006), this study examines how specific cognitive and emotional responses to perceived workplace wrongdoing lead to whistle-blowing decisions. Specifically, we examine how judgments of responsibility about wrongdoing, perceptions of intention about wrongdoing, and feelings of anger about wrongdoing lead to decisions to blow the whistle. Based on our findings, we are able to provide managers and researchers with a better understanding of whistle-blowing. Furthermore, from a practical perspective, the implications of our research will help mangers review and update their policies in light of current management trends in whistle-blowing.

The paper proceeds as follows: we develop and articulate the hypotheses, present the methodology, and then discuss the implications of this research, note limitations of the study, and identify opportunities for future inquiry. In this third main section of the paper, we discuss the managerial implications of this research, which will be of special interest to practitioners.

Hypotheses Development

In this research, we applied attribution theory to the study of whistle-blowing to further understanding of this topic. According to attribution theory, information about how events such as acts of wrongdoing were caused will influence cognitive and emotional responses, which, in turn, will lead to the decisions people make about these events (Weiner, 1995, 2006). Researchers have shown that negative workplace events attributable to controllable and stable factors can encourage perceptions of intention, judgments of responsibility, and feelings of anger (Comer and Vega, 2006; Martinko and Zellars, 1998; Struthers, Miller, Boudens, and Briggs, 2001; Weiner, 2006). When events are due to controllable factors, they occurred under conditions that allowed those that caused them the freedom to choose their behavior. On the other hand, the attributional dimension of stability refers to the extent that the cause for an outcome is perceived as likely to change over time. For example, when wrongdoing is due to stable organizational causes, this indicates it has occurred more than once and may happen again.

In the context of whistle-blowing, acts of wrongdoing that are attributable to controllable and stable organizational factors mean that organizations were free to choose the behavior causing these acts and that they occurred more than once. This type of causal information should encourage cognitive and emotional responses leading to whistle-blowing decisions. Specifically, this type of causal information should encourage perceptions of intention, judgments regarding responsibility, and feelings of anger (Weiner, 1995, 2006). In other words, wrongdoing attributable to controllable and stable organizational causes should strongly influence perceptions of intention, judgments of responsibility, and feelings of anger. Furthermore, these responses should be stronger than when wrongdoing is attributed to uncontrollable or unstable organizational causes. Based on this discussion, we present the following hypotheses:

Hypothesis 1. Organizational wrongdoing that is attributed to controllable and stable organizational causes will result in stronger perceptions of intention than will wrongdoing that is attributed to uncontrollable or unstable organizational causes.

Hypothesis 2. Organizational wrongdoing that is attributed to controllable and stable organizational causes will result in stronger judgments of responsibility than will wrongdoing that is attributed to uncontrollable or unstable organizational causes.

Hypothesis 3. Organizational wrongdoing that is attributed to controllable and stable organizational causes will result in stronger feelings of anger than will wrongdoing that is attributed to uncontrollable or unstable organizational causes.

Next we will explain how these cognitive and emotional responses can lead to whistle-blowing decisions. Researchers have shown that perceptions of intention and judgments of responsibility predict responces to acts of wrongdoing (Martinko and Zellars, 1998; Weiner, 1995, 2006). Therefore, we believe they are important factors to consider in understanding the whistle-blowing decision-making process. Furthermore, based on additional research about attribution theory, we believe that anger will play an important role in motivating decisions to blow the whistle. Attribution theory holds that, in addition to the influence of the cognitions just discussed, anger can serve as a strong influence on decisions (Weiner, 1995, 2006). Specifically, previous research shows that anger can serve as the motivational conduit through which cognitions about wrongdoing are transformed into the actual decisions people make about these acts. Anger can mediate the influence of cognitions on actual decisions (e.g., Betancourt and Blair, 1992; Weiner, 1995, 2006). Applying these insights to whistle-blowing, we believe that anger will mediate the relationship between judgments of responsibility and whistle-blowing decisions, and that anger will also mediate the relationship between perceptions of intention and whistle-blowing decisions. Based on this, we present the following hypotheses:

Hypothesis 4. There will be a positive relationship between perceptions of intention about organizational wrongdoing and decisions to blow the whistle.

Hypothesis 5. Feelings of anger about organizational wrongdoing will mediate the relationship between perceptions of intention about organizational wrongdoing and decisions to blow the whistle.

Hypothesis 6. There will be a positive relationship between judgments of responsibility about organizational wrongdoing and decisions to blow the whistle.

Hypothesis 7. Feelings of anger about organizational wrongdoing will mediate the relationship between judgments of responsibility about organizational wrongdoing and decisions to blow the whistle.

Methodology

The authors collected data from 244 non-managerial employees working for a company in the southeastern United States. The participants first read and signed a consent form indicating their voluntary participation in the study and guaranteeing the anonymity of their responses. Then, each participant was given a copy of the survey instrument, consisting of a brief written scenario followed by the primary measures as well as several demographic questions. Four scenarios about organizational wrongdoing were developed to form four experimental conditions. Each participant read one of the scenarios in which organizational wrongdoing was attributable either to controllable and stable causes (Experimental Condition 1), controllable and unstable causes (Experimental Condition 2), uncontrollable and stable causes (Experimental Condition 3), or uncontrollable and unstable causes (Experimental Condition 4). To be consistent with previous work (Miceli and Near, 1985; Miceli, Rehg, Near, and Ryan, 1999), wrongdoing was described at an organizational level. The scenarios were developed by modeling them after those used in previous studies involving similar attributional manipulations (Betancourt and Blair, 1992; Weiner, 1995, 2006). Additionally, as in previous studies, the four versions of organizational wrongdoing were written exactly the same except for the wording about the cause of wrongdoing. This allowed for consistency of information across participants who read different versions of the scenarios. Once completed, the survey instrument was reviewed by a panel of practitioners and academics with expertise in the area. Based on their feedback, refinements were made; then, the instrument was piloted before being administered in the present study.

Measures

* Perceptions of intention. The participants' perceptions of intention were measured using a three-item scale based on work by Betancourt and Blair (1992) and Weiner (1995). The reliability coefficient for this measure was .88.

* Judgments of responsibility. The participants' judgments of responsibility were measured using a three-item scale based on work by Struthers et al. (2001) and Weiner (1995). The reliability coefficient for this measure was .89.

* Feelings of anger. The participants' feelings of anger were measured using a three-item scale based on work by Betancourt and Blair (1992) and Weiner (1995). The reliability coefficient for this measure was .86.

Whistle-blowing decisions. The participants' whistle-blowing decisions were measured using a three-item scale based on work by Miceli and Near (1984, 1985). The reliability coefficient for this measure was .84.

Control variables. Research has indicated that gender, age, education, and tenure are related to whistle-blowing decisions (Miceli and Near, 1984, 1988, 1992; Parmerlee, Near, and Jensen, 1982; Rehg et al., 2008). These variables were controlled for in this study. Several studies have also shown that the perceived seriousness of wrongdoing can influence decisions to blow the whistle (Miceli and Near, 1985, 2002). Accordingly, perceived seriousness of wrongdoing was also controlled for using a three-item scale based on work by Miceli and Near (1985). The reliability coefficient for this measure was .83.

Analysis and Results

Means, standard deviations, and intercorrelations among the variables are shown in Table 1. Of those surveyed, 64% were male and 36% were female, the average age was 33, and average tenure with the company was six years. In terms of educational background, the average had "some" college courses.

Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test Hypotheses 1, 2, and 3. The ANOVAs for perceptions of intention (F (3,243) = 32.82, p < .001), judgments of responsibility (F (3,243) = 74.17, p < .001), and feelings of anger (F (3, 243) = 37.21, p < .001) were all significant. Thus, these results supported Hypotheses 1, 2, and 3 because they confirmed that participants reading scenarios in which wrongdoing was attributable to controllable and stable organizational causes had significantly stronger perceptions of intention, judgments of responsibility, and feelings of anger than participants who read any of the other three scenarios.

Baron and Kenny's (1986) procedure was used to test hypotheses four through seven. Baron and Kenny (1986) explain how to test for mediation by using a three-step procedure involving three regression analyses. Hypotheses 4 and 5 were tested first; results are shown in Table 2. These results demonstrated that perceptions of intention were significantly related to whistle-blowing decisions ([beta] = .32, p < .001). Thus, Hypothesis 4 was supported. Additionally, the results demonstrated that perceptions of intention ([beta] = .21, p < .001) and feelings of anger ([beta] = .31, p < .001) were significantly related to whistle-blowing decisions. Thus, Hypothesis 5 was supported; specifically, partial mediation was indicated because the effect of perceptions of intention on whistle-blowing decisions remained significant but was reduced in value from step two to step three (Baron and Kenny, 1986). We used the corrected test for significance detailed by Kenny, Kashy, and Bolger (1998) to determine if this reduction was large enough to be significant, and it was (Z = 3.73, p < .001).

Hypotheses 6 and 7 were tested next, with the results shown in Table 3. The results showed that in step two, judgments of responsibility were significantly related to whistle-blowing decisions ([beta] = .23, p < .001). Thus, Hypothesis 6 was supported. However, in step three the results showed that when feelings of anger were entered into the equation with judgments of responsibility, judgments of responsibility were no longer significantly related to whistle-blowing decisions. Instead, feelings of anger ([beta] = .39, p < .001) were significantly related to whistle-blowing decisions. Taken together, the results from steps two and three demonstrated that Hypothesis 7 was supported; specifically, full mediation was indicated because the effect of judgments of responsibility on whistle-blowing decisions was significant in step two but was no longer significant in step three (Baron and Kenny, 1986; Kenny, et al., 1998).

Discussion and Implications

The aim of this research was to further our understanding of whistle-blowing by using a new approach. As such, this study represents the first empirical examination of whistle-blowing using attribution theory (Weiner, 1986, 1995, 2006). Guided by this theory, we examined how certain cognitive and emotional responses to acts of wrongdoing led to decisions to blow the whistle. Overall, the results demonstrated support for this new approach. Specifically, results for hypotheses one, two, and three showed that when wrongdoing was attributable to controllable and stable organizational causes there were strong cognitive and emotional responses to it. Results also supported the direct effect of perceptions of intention on whistle-blowing decisions (Hypothesis 4), as well as the direct effect of judgments of responsibility on whistle-blowing decisions (Hypothesis 6). These results suggest that cognitive responses to wrongdoing can have a significant impact on individuals' decisions to blow the whistle. Additionally, feelings of anger were hypothesized to mediate the relationship between perceptions of intention and whistle-blowing decisions (Hypothesis 5), as well as the relationship between judgments of responsibility and whistle-blowing decisions (Hypothesis 7). The results supported both of these hypotheses. These findings demonstrate the significant role anger can play in translating cognitive assessments of wrongdoing into decisions to blow the whistle.

Implications for managers

This research has important implications for managers. As shown in this study, employee perceptions about workplace wrongdoing can feed a cognitive-emotional process leading to whistle-blowing. Of course, in a perfect world, wrongdoing in the workplace would never occur. The reality is that wrongdoing, or at least the perception of wrongdoing, will inevitably occur in the workplace. This is an important point because, as the legal experts explain:

"Employers should not treat employees who are mistaken in their beliefs any differently, because even a mistaken but objectively reasonable belief is protected under law" (Cha, 2008). With these insights in mind, it is evident that managers must take a clear stance on whistle-blowing and have effective policies and procedures in place.

Consider, for example, how the present research sheds light on the whistle-blowing incident involving the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. In brief, the FBI did not view its handling of information related to the terrorist attacks as indicative of controllable and stable organizational behavior (Ripley and Sieger, 2003). However, one employee of the FBI perceived that this information was mishandled and that this behavior was due to controllable and stable causes. Consequently, she viewed the FBI as responsible for this mishandling and was angry enough to blow the whistle (Ripley and Sieger, 2003).

As this example shows, organizations must have open channels of communication in place that enable employees to report workplace acts they perceive as questionable and that assist them in understanding how these acts were caused. Having these channels not only encourages a more ethical and transparent workplace, but also enhances organizational learning and knowledge sharing. By understanding the causal attributions associated with employees' perceptions, and by taking their cognitive and emotional concerns seriously, managers can build trust within their organizations and benefit from learning how things operate in the eyes of all employees. For example, consider the influence of anger. This study is the first to demonstrate empirically the significant effect of anger on whistle-blowing. Translating this finding into a managerial implication causes us to take a step back in the whistle-blowing process to note that employee perceptions and judgments about wrongdoing precede the development of anger. Thus, by having mechanisms in place that enable employees to voice and discuss these concerns before anger arises, managers can encourage a more ethical and transparent workplace. For example, if an employee views the organization or one of its members as responsible for wrongdoing, an explanation of how the situation occurred and what is being done to remedy it could encourage understanding and trust versus potential anger.

To achieve these goals, managers can choose from several options that best fit their circumstances. More traditional approaches include open door policies, company Web sites, new sletters, and other forums for communication. Organizational leadership and culture are also crucial. The norms within a company and the behavior of its executives are good indicators of its ethical climate. A decentralized organizational structure is also conducive to encouraging ethical decision-making at all levels (Stanford, 2004). A more recent trend in the management of whistle-blowing that has affected companies throughout the world is the use of ethical hotlines. In the U.S., this trend primarily has been driven by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Enacted in 2002, this legislation requires publicly traded companies based in the U.S. to have reporting mechanisms in place that include a toll-free whistle-blower hotline. According to a comprehensive report conducted in 2007, 81% of public and private U.S. companies have instituted whistle-blower hotlines, which have proved very effective. The report showed that wrongdoing acts occur at all levels of organizations, and that the top four reasons for hotline calls were 1) personnel management incidents (50%), 2) company/professional code violations (16%), 3) employment law violations (11%), and 4) corruption or fraud (10%) (Security Executive Council, 2007). The report also showed that 71% of the callers did not notify management of the issue before calling the hotline. This finding reinforces the notion that perceptions of wrongdoing and associated cognitive-emotional responses leading to decisions to blow the whistle will inevitably occur.

To encourage employees to be as open as possible about their perceptions, judgments, and feelings about workplace wrongdoing, most of the hotline services allow callers to remain anonymous. However, only about one-half of whistle-blowers made their reports anonymously, according to the 2007 comprehensive report. These providers employ skilled professional operators who are familiar with relevant laws and whistle-blowing statutes and are trained in the documentation of such reports. In terms of price, obtaining whistle-blowing hotline services from top providers can cost as little as 50 cents per employee (Sweeney, 2008). If companies could save some of the hundreds of billions of dollars lost each year due to workplace wrongdoing, these services would pay for themselves.

Another recent trend is that some companies are providing training about whistle-blowing hotlines to their vendors and even customers. Training focuses not only on teaching about the hotline services, but also concentrates on raising awareness about what constitutes questionable behavior. This is an important component of any company's whistle-blowing training process. Employees should be given clear examples of wrongful acts, and they must be taught what procedures to follow in these situations as well as what resources are available to them, such as ethical hotlines. In addition to strengthening whistle-blowing training programs, following these guidelines will encourage an ethical climate within a company and deter wrongdoing from happening in the first place. One last trend to note is that some companies are offering awards and incentives, not only for ethical behavior (Sauser, 2007), but also for whistleblowers who bring workplace wrongdoing to light (Sweeney, 2008).

As these recent trends show, managers are more aware than ever that wrongdoing can and likely will take place within their companies. Moreover, even if actual wrongdoing does not take place, inevitably some employees will perceive that it has. This research showed how these perceptions can lead to cognitive responses and feelings of anger that will trigger whistle-blowing decisions. Therefore, companies must have policies and practices in place that will enable employee concerns to be heard and their thoughts and feelings to be taken seriously. If these policies and practices are not in place, if they are not viewed as authentic or trustworthy, or if employees are not aware of them, the likelihood that whistle-blowing will result becomes greater and greater.

Research implications, future inquiry, and limitations

Findings from this research can further understanding of previous work in the area of whistle-blowing. For example, researchers have been concerned with how power relations between whistle-blowers and wrongdoers influence decisions to blow the whistle (Miceli and Near, 1992; Near and Miceli, 1986, 1995; Rehg et al., 2008). They have noted that whistle-blowers often suffer retaliation from their organizations, but will still blow the whistle even when they know or suspect that retaliation is likely. This situation seems counterintuitive because most people tend to avoid punishment, especially if it is predictable. Perhaps whistle-blowers' knowledge that their organizations may retaliate is viewed as yet another controllable and stable example of wrongdoing. In making this inference, it follows that these controllable and stable attributions will then exacerbate perceptions of intention, judgments of responsibility, and feelings of anger, which, in turn, will increase the probability that people will blow the whistle. This helps explain why individuals decide to blow the whistle even when the cost may not appear to justify the reward.

The present research also relates to work focusing on the topic of psychological contracts (Rousseau, 1995). Turnley and Feldman (1999) conducted a study showing that violations of psychological contracts resulted in increased levels of whistle-blowing. This finding resonates with the present research. For example, perceptions of intention about wrongdoing could contribute to an employee's sense of psychological contract violation. As shown in this study, the anger associated with this perception could lead to whistle-blowing. Beyond making this connection between the present research and this previous study on psychological contracts, opportunities for future research also exist in this area. For example, research on psychological contracts is related to work on loyalty and whistle-blowing (Larmer, 1992; Vandekerckhove and Commers, 2004). In this context, anger could be viewed as disrupting loyalty found within psychological contracts, motivating decisions to blow the whistle. Investigating these types of relationships within these common areas of research offers fertile ground for future inquiry.

Using a cognitive-emotional approach also highlights the interesting and complex relationship between cognitions and emotions. To view cognitive and emotional responses as separate oversimplifies the dynamics of their relationship. It is more accurate to consider emotion as a vehicle through which cognition can be transformed into action (Goldman, 2003; Weiner, 1986, 1995, 2006). Consistent with this perspective, results from this study provide a specific example demonstrating how emotion mediated the process by which cognitions influenced decisions to blow the whistle.

It is important to consider the limitations of this study. First, given our use of a new approach, the results provide initial support for empirically examining how cognitions and anger influence whistle-blowing. These findings should be further validated by future research, which could also consider the influence of other factors not examined in this research. For example, what role might emotions such guilt, fear, or greed play in whistle-blowing decisions? Examining these factors was beyond the scope of this study, but provides opportunities for future inquiry.

Another limitation relates to the use of a scenario-based design. The individuals surveyed responded to a hypothetical scenario. Ideally, we could have asked respondents if they had or had not blown the whistle in an actual organizational situation, thus strengthening our results. Not surprisingly, whistle-blowing research conducted in this manner is quite rare. Due to the sensitivity of the topic, organizations and employees are reluctant to participate in studies of this type. To address such challenges, the majority of whistle-blowing studies used scenario-based approaches (e.g., Decker and Calo, 2007; Keenan, 2002; O'Leary and Cotter, 2000; Patel, 2003; Peek et al., 2007; Rothschild and Miethe, 1999).

Although using hypothetical scenarios has limitations, this approach also has advantages. For example, it is effective for testing specific relationships, such as in the present research. Furthermore, it helps overcome the difficulties associated with gathering whistle-blowing data.

In conclusion, because this approach has been widely used throughout whistle-blowing research, as well as in studies based on attribution theory (e.g., Betancourt and Blair, 1992; Jonathan, Alison, and Long, 2007; Weiner, 1995, 2006), it was an appropriate and effective design for acquiring data in this study.

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Michael J. Gundlach, California State University, Chico

Mark J. Martinko, Florida State University

Scott C. Douglas, University of Montana

Dr. Gunlach teaches human resource management and general management and also conducts research, publishes, and consults in these areas--especially whistle-blowing, training and development, emotional intelligence, and computer self-efficacy. Dr. Martinko teaches organizational behavior, leadership, and research methods. His research focuses on developing and testing models to explain intra- and interpersonal behavior in organizations, particularly leadership behaviors, impression management, and causal reasoning processes. He also consults and has published extensively. Dr. Douglas teaches human resource management, strategy, and general and international management. His research interests and publications include workplace aggression and work-family conflict, ethical decision-making, employee selection stress, and expatriate management performance.
Table 1. Means, Standard Deviations, and Intercorrelations of the
Study Variables

 Variables Mean SD 1 2 3 4

1 Age 3.81 2.11 --

2 Gender 0.64 0.52 -.03 --

3 Education 2.15 1.11 .20 -.05 --

4 Tenure 4.00 2.90 .64 ** .06 .12 --

5 Seriousness of 7.89 1.49 .30 ** -.12 .11 .17 **
 wrongdoing

6 Perceptions of 3.00 2.19 .03 -.01 .05 -.05
 Intention

7 Judgments of 6.19 2.67 -.07 .04 .10 -.09
 Responsibility

8 Feelings of 6.67 2.07 .03 -.07 .08 .00
 Anger

9 Whistle- 5.47 2.21 .11 -.07 .11 .05
 blowing
 decisions

 Variables 5 6 7 8

1 Age

2 Gender

3 Education

4 Tenure

5 Seriousness of --
 wrongdoing

6 Perceptions of .06 --
 Intention

7 Judgments of .24 .47 ** --
 Responsibility

8 Feelings of .37 ** .37 ** .63 ** --
 Anger

9 Whistle- .22 ** .33 ** .26 ** .42 *
 blowing
 decisions

N = 244

* p <.05

** p < .01

*** p < .001

Table 2. Hierarchical Regression Summary for Perceptions of
Intentionality and Feelings of Anger on Whistle-Blowing Decisions

First Step: Mediator (Feelings of Anger) Regressed on Independent
Variable (Perceptions of Intentionality)

 Feelings of Anger

 [beta] [R.sup.2]
 F change
Part 1- Control Variables Entered
Age -.09
Gender .02
Education .06
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .38 *** 8.19 *** .14 ***
Part 2--Independent Variable
 Entered
Perceptions of Intentionality .35 *** 14.76 *** .12 ***

Second Step: Dependent Variable (Whistle-Blowing Decisions) Regressed
on Independent Variable (Perceptions of Intentionality)

 Whistle-Blowing Decisions

 [beta] [R.sup.2]
 F change
Part 1--Control Variables Entered
Age .04
Gender .04
Education .08
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .19 *** 2.84 * .06 *
Part 2--Independent Variable
 Entered
Perceptions of Intentionality .32 *** 7.58 *** .10 ***

Third Step: Dependent Variable (Whistle-Blowing Decisions) Regressed on
Mediator (Feelings of Anger) with Independent Variable (Perceptions
of Intentionality) Included

 Whistle-Blowing Decisions

 [beta] [R.sup.2]
 F change
Part 1--Control Variables
 Entered
Age .04
Gender .04
Education .08
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .19 *** 2.84 * .06 *
Part 2--Independent Variable and
Mediator Entered
Perceptions of Intentionality .21 ***
Feelings of Anger .31 *** 10.11 *** .17 ***

N=244

* p <.05

** P <.01

*** p <.001

Table 3. Hierarchical Regression Summary for Judgments of
Responsibility and Feelings of Anger on Whistle-Blowing Decisions

First Step: Mediator (Feelings of Anger) Regressed on Independent
Variable (Judgments of Responsibility)

 Feelings of Anger

 [beta] F [R.sup.2]
 change
Part 1--Control Variables
 Entered
Age -.09
Gender .02
Education .06
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .38 *** 8.19 *** .14 ***
Part 2--Independent Variable
 Entered
Judgments of Responsibility .52 *** 33.25 *** .26 ***

Second Step: Dependent Variable (Whistle-Blowing Decisions) Regressed
on Independent Variable (Judgments of Responsibility)

 Whistle-Blowing Decisions

 [R.sup.2]
 [beta] F change
Part 1--Control Variables
 Entered
Age .04
Gender .04
Education .08
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .19 *** 2.84 * .06 *
Part 2--Independent Variable
 Entered
Judgments of Responsibility .23 *** 4.60*** .05***

Third Step: Dependent Variable (Whistle-Blowing Decisions) Regressed
on Mediator (Feelings of Anger) with Independent Variable (Judgments
of Responsibility) Included

 Whistle-Blowing Decisions

 [R.sup.2]
 [beta] F change
Part 1--Control Variables
 Entered
Age .04
Gender .04
Education .08
Tenure -.02
Seriousness of Wrongdoing .19 *** 2.84 * .06 *
Part 2--Independent Variable
and Mediator Entered
Judgments of Responsibility .07
Feelings of Anger .39 *** 7.96*** .13 ***

N = 244

* p < .05

** p <.01

*** p <.001
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Author:Gundlach, Michael J.; Martinko, Mark J.; Douglas, Scott C.
Publication:SAM Advanced Management Journal
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 22, 2008
Words:5708
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