How does ethical leadership influence employees’ whistleblowing intention? Evidence from China

Peng Wen1, Cheng Chen2
1School of Economics and Business Administration, Central China Normal University, People’s Republic of China
2College of Public Administration, Central China Normal University, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Wen, P., & Chen, C. (2016). How does ethical leadership influence employees’ whistleblowing intention? Evidence from China. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 44(8), 1255-1266.

Volume 44 Issue 8 | e5504 | Published: September 2016 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2016.44.8.1255

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We investigated the relationship between ethical leadership and employees’ whistleblowing intention, along with the mediating role of moral identity and the moderating role of power distance orientation. We conducted a 2-wave survey with 172 participant managers in China. Results indicated that ethical leadership was positively related to employees’ whistleblowing intention and this relationship was mediated by moral identity. Moreover, employee power distance orientation positively moderated the relationship between ethical leadership and moral identity, such that the relationship was stronger for high power distance orientation employees than for those with a low power distance orientation. Theoretical contributions and practical implications are discussed.

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