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The intention is to provide a forum for the publication of scientific articles in the field of business ethics. It is the first journal of business ethics on the African continent. The aim of the journal is to contribute to the expansion and establishment of business ethics as academic field in Africa.

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The Globethics.net library contains articles of the African Journal of Business Ethics (AJoBE) as of vol. 1(2005) to current.

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  • “First, do no harm”? An overview and ethical evaluation of South Africa’s climate change mitigation commitments in light of the Paris Agreement

    Steenkamp, Lee-Anne; Naude, Piet (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2018-11-16)
    South Africa ratified the Paris Agreement in 2016 and thereby committed to reducing Greenhouse Gas (GHG) concentration levels as part of its self-determined goals in its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC). This articleviewed the targets in the NDC through an ethical lens. It was demonstrated that the commitment below the ‘business-asusual’ (BAU) level allowed for large increases in South Africa’s emissions without explaining how these were consistent with a specific understanding of what equity required. Also, the NDCtargets were found to be highly insufficient. Consequently, South Africa’s climate change mitigation commitments were deemed inconsistent with the ethical ‘no-harm’ principle.
  • Reducing Carbon Emissions: Strathmore University Contributions Towards Sustainable Development in Kenya

    Munene, Lilian Njeri (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-07-22)
    Strathmore University is the first educational institution in sub-Saharan Africa to achieve a zero-carbon footprint. With 2,400 panels located on the roofs of six buildings, it is the largest rooftop solar installation in the region. Kenya sits on the equator and enjoys year-round insulation. Taking advantage of a green line of financial support created by the French Government, Strathmore embarked on a project to install a 600kW roof-top, grid-connected solar photovoltaic power system to cater for its electricity needs. The system is designed to produce more than the required self-consumption, hence the extra power is sold to the utility via a power purchase agreement. This investment in renewable energy confirms that universities can demonstrate leadership in the area of environment and energy. This paper describes the economic and social impact created by a university through greening its sources of energy.
  • Perceptions regarding distributive justice in the South African financial service industry

    Smith, Elroy Eugene; Mazibuko, Noxolo Eileen; Mrwebi, Viwe (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-07-22)
    Distributive justice is associated with the perceptions of an individual to the presence of equity and fairness in an organisation. The primary objective of this study is to critically assess distributive justice within the South African financial services industry. A quantitative research design was employed. Non-probability sampling was used and 436 usable questionnaires were returned. The empirical results revealed that trustworthiness of management, extrinsic rewards and organisational climate have positive influence on distributive justice, while employee engagement and two-way communication are founded to have no significant influence on distributive justice. Furthermore, distributive justice had a positive influence on organisational citizenship behaviour and reputable employee retention in the financial services industry.
  • VALIDITY OF THE CORPORATE ETHICAL VIRTUE MODEL (CEV) IN A SOUTH AFRICAN CONTEXT: A CASE STUDY

    van Wyk, Ireze (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-07-22)
    Ethics is reflected in the culture of an organisation. If necessary, the status of the ethical culture in an organisation can be measured. The purpose of this study was to identify an instrument that can measure ethical culture, and to establish its validity and reliability in a South African context. The Corporate Ethical Virtue Model was identified, as its validity had been subjected to reliability tests within a South African insurance company. The instrument’s reliability was confirmed through Cronbach Alpha coefficients. The article concludes that the CEV model has application value within the context in which it was tested.
  • CSR ENGAGEMENT BY ZIMBABWEAN SMES

    Chanakira, Maxwell (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-07-22)
    This study examines CSR engagement by Zimbabwean SMEs through their practices and procedures. A qualitative approach was adopted, involving 16 in-depth interviews with key decision makers of ICT SMES in Zimbabwe. The study makes finds that Understanding of CSR by SMEs is patchy, their approach to selecting and executing CSR activities is ad hoc, unstructured and not supported by dedicated budgets while decision making rests solely with the CEO who values and upbringing plays a defining role in this process. The study presents useful insights from a developing world context on CSR characteristics by SMEs.
  • Consider the following scenario: “A politically connected White Western European businessman offers to smooth the way for your company to sell in his country … for a fee.”

    Eccles, Neil Stuart; Magagula, Busisiwe (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-07-22)
    In 2014, Birtch et al published a paper that contained unnecessary negative cultural/racial stereotyping in a vignette presented in the paper’s introduction. Given the potentially harmful consequences of negative stereotyping, and the relatively frequent use of vignettes in the business ethics literature, this prompted us to wonder whether this was an isolated instance or a more widespread occurrence. To investigate this question we conducted a search of the scholarly literature for papers containing the string ‘vignette’ or ‘scenario’, and ‘business ethics’ using the EBSCOhost databases to which our institution subscribes. This search yielded a collection of 154 papers where vignettes were actually presented. Of these, approximately 18% contained negative cultural or racial stereotyping while 38% contained some form of negative gender stereotyping. In our view, these are uncomfortably high frequencies, so uncomfortably high in fact that they prompt us to conclude with a plea to authors, editors and reviewers within the business ethics academic literature to be on guard against this practice.
  • Academic dishonesty and whistleblowing in a higher education institution: A sociological analysis

    Radulovic, Ugljesa; Uys, Tina (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-12-11)
    High rates of academic dishonesty are a concern, and whistleblowing is a mechanism that can curb the incidence thereof. This study attempted to identify the variables associated with the reporting of academic dishonesty, framing itself within the reasoned action approach. It entailed a survey with a sample of 405 undergraduate sociology students. Data was collected by means of self-administered structured questionnaire. Five factors mediate the willingness to report: students’ general honesty; their level of academic honesty; the justification for committing academic dishonesty; the personal impact of reporting; and the adherence to principles as an influence on reporting. Students with higher degrees of general honesty were more willing to report, the fear of retaliation contributed to an unwillingness to report, and institutional rules; norms and procedures influenced willingness to report.
  • Perceptions of governance in the animal welfare sector

    Murray, Chantelle; Thomas, Adèle (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-12-11)
    The purpose of the study was to gather information on perceptions of the current governance practices in shelters in South Africa and put forward recommendations to professionalise the sector at board/committee level. Through semi-structured interviews, this qualitative study sought out the views of 16 participants, both at board/committee and at operational levels, at companion animal shelters. The main findings indicate inconsistencies and flaws in the governance fabric in this sector, and point to the need for a coherent set of basic governance standards suitable for shelters. This study makes a contribution to the companion animal welfare sector by offering the first formal study into governance in this domain, and provides a foundation from which future research can be leveraged.
  • Perceived ethical leadership in relation to employees’ organisational commitment in an organisation in the Democratic Republic of Congo

    Mitonga-Monga, Jeremy; Cilliers, Frans (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
    The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between ethical leadership and organisational commitment. A cross-sectional quantitative survey approach was used, with a non-probability purposive sample of 839 employees from a railway organisation in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The results indicate that ethical leadership perceptions have a significant influence on the level of organisational commitment. The study further indicated that ethical leadership predicted employees’ affective, continuance and normative and overall commitment. These results add new insights to the construct of business ethics by showing that a positive perception of ethical leadership by employees is an important consideration in enhancing their organisational commitment.The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between ethical leadership and organisational commitment. A cross-sectional quantitative survey approach was used, with a non-probability purposive sample of 839 employees from a railway organisation in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The results indicate that ethical leadership perceptions have a significant influence on the level of organisational commitment. The study further indicated that ethical leadership predicted employees’ affective, continuance and normative and overall commitment. These results add new insights to the construct of business ethics by showing that a positive perception of ethical leadership by employees is an important consideration in enhancing their organisational commitment.
  • They can be choosers: Aid, Levinas and Unconditional Cash Transfers

    Andrade, Julio (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2019-12-11)
    In this paper I seek to critically examine UCT’s and CCT’s and consider how a Levinasian ethics might offer normative guidelines to evaluate such aid programmes. Such an analysis will serve to both critique and supplement the traditional utilitarian analyses of such programmes. In so doing, this paper also hopes to contribute to the business ethics literature in which a Levinasian ethics may be brought to bear on real world problems. I proceed by enlisting Jordaan (2009) who argues that a Levinasian ethical politics can be instantiated in institutional designs by allowing a more complex representation of the other’s alterity. Two UCT programmes are interrogated in light of this finding – the first, a UCT programme in a community in Vietnam; the second, a joint CCT/UCT programme targeting adolescent girls in Malawi, designed to test the efficacy of conditionality to achieve certain.
  • Mutuality: A root principle for marketing ethics

    Elegido, Juan M (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
    This paper seeks to identify a mid-level unifying ethical principle that may help clarify and articulate the ethical responsibilities of business firms in the field of marketing ethics. The paper examines critically the main principles which have been proposed to date in the literature, namely consumer sovereignty, preserving the conditions of an acceptable exchange, paternalism, and the perfect competition ideal, and concludes that all of them are vulnerable to damaging criticisms. The paper articulates and defends the mutuality principle as the most plausible candidate for the role of master principle in the relations between a firm and its customers. This principle requires that sellers look for reciprocity in their relations with their customers, seeking to provide to their customers something that helps them improve in some way their well-being and is commensurate with what they receive from them
  • Bank customers’ preferences and responses to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives in Ghana

    Hinson, Ebo; Renner, Anne; van Zyl, Helena (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
     The study seeks to investigate Ghanaian bank customers’ ranked preference for corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives and determine which initiative has the greatest effect on attitude and behaviour toward banks. A sample of 384 retail bank customers is employed in the study. Applying a one-way MANOVA and two uni-variate ANOVAs, the study finds that customers have the highest preference for corporate philanthropy initiatives, followed by customer-centric and community volunteering initiatives. Additionally, the overall effects of CSR initiatives on customers’ attitude and behavioural intentions toward bank brands are found to be significant. More specifically, the study finds, using a Scheffé post-hoc test, that corporate philanthropy initiative have the greatest effect on both attitude and behavioural intentions towards bank brands. Based on the findings, the study recommends that the best type of CSR initiative that retail banks should apply to stimulate customers’ attitude and behaviour towards their brands in Ghana is corporate philanthropy initiatives.
  • Work ethics of different generational cohorts in South Africa

    van der Walt, Freda (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
    Although generational differences have been studied in developed countires, not much information is available about generational cohorts and how they differ in terms of work ethics in developing countries. A cross-sectional study was conducted with a sample of 301 respondents from South Africa. Work ethics of three generational cohorts were measured, namely the Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y. The main finding of this research was that statistically significant differences and similarities were found between the various generational cohorts in terms of work ethics facets. Statistically significant generational differences were indicated for hard work and delay of gratification. 
  • The stakeholder theory of corporate control and the place of ethics in OHADA: The case of Cameroon

    Sama-Lang, Irene; Zesung, Njonguo Abel (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
    The rapid increase in globalization in the last two and a half decades has caused businesses to easily transcend national boundaries. States respond to such flexibility by harmonising their laws to easily adapt to such changes in order to attract investments. This is the case with the OHADA jurisdiction where its architects foresaw an economic spur through integration of business laws. Though expected to stay within the bounds of the law, the law cannot absolutely determine how businesses should prioritise their stakes. As such, ethics comes in to complement the law. This article uses the stakeholder theory of corporate control to investigate the place of ethics in OHADA, as applied in Cameroon. It concludes that an altruistic social conscience is still highly wanting.
  • A construct of code effectiveness: empirical findings and measurement properties

    Roberts-Lombard, Mornay; Mpinganjira, Mercy; Wood, Greg; Svensson, Göran (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016-10-11)
    The purpose of the study is to examine and describe the use of codes of ethics in companies operating South Africa. The population included the company secretaries of the top 500 companies operating in the South African corporate sector. The findings stipulate that South African companies need to understand that their employees are diverse in beliefs and opinions and as a result do not all have a similar ethical value system. Therefore, ethical education is imperative to ensure a stronger focus on the offering of ethics programmes aligned with the business philosophy of the company.
  • The conceptualization and measurement of philosophical approaches that influence ethical decision making in the work context: Part 1

    Boshoff, Estelle; Department of Industrial Psychology, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein; Kotzé, Martina; Department of Industrial Psychology, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein (SUNMeDIA, 2014-07-23)
    The negative consequences which unethical behaviour holds for organizations necessitates a focus on ethical issues within the work context, as well as factors which may have an influence on ethical be- haviour. Regarding individual factors, researchers indicate that the individual’s ethical decision-making philosophy influences the manner in which ethical problems are managed and behavioural decisions are made. The aim of this article (which forms part of a research project consisting of four parts) is therefore to investigate, by means of a thorough literature review, the ethical issues that organizations mostly face, as well as the philosophical decision-making approaches that may influence ethical decision making in the work context, and to integrate these approaches within a holistic framework of ethical decision making. Six main philosophical approaches together with certain corresponding sub-approaches that may influence ethical decision making in the workplace were identified and integrated within a holistic framework of ethical decision making. 
  • Attitudes of accounting students towards ethics, continuous professional development and lifelong learning

    Els, Gideon; Department of Finance and Investment Management, University of Johannesburg (SUNMeDIA, 2014-07-29)
    With a myriad of corporate scandals involving fraud and theft across the world, the auditing profession has been put under the spotlight with the prominence of promoting an ethical attitude within the profession and amongst its members. By way of an empirical study conducted with a group of students at a leading university in South Africa, it was found that the necessity for change and CPD are concepts not collectively agreed upon by all within the profession, even more so when it comes to a group of final-year undergraduate students at this university. This article provides a series of recommendations regarding the improvement of the current teaching and learning model in order to include a CPD approach when it comes to ethics. 
  • Market Driven Global Directives and Social Responsibility in Higher Education

    Veldman, Frederick J; Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, South Africa (AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2018-06-26)
    Liberation from human suffering is a noble achievement, but without freedom from the constraints of poverty, liberty is partial. The South African Constitution commits us to the establishment of a society based on "democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights." All Higher Education (HE) Institutions, therefore, should be founded on "the will of the people." Within the context, we are responsible for our own destinies. HE however, has become subjected to the needs of a market-driven mentality. The purpose of this paper is to draw the reader into a paradigm that protests against the current hegemonic version of how we manage HEIs.
  • Executive Remuneration in South Africa: Key Issues Highlighted by Shareholder Activists

    Viviers, Suzette; Stellenbosch University (SUNMeDIA, 2015-12-21)
    The growing wage gap in South Africa has far-reaching socio-economic consequences. This study investigated the nature of executive remuneration issues raised by shareholder activists in the country. An analysis of 24 510 votes cast by 17 investment managers at 347 companies listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in 2013 revealed that the vote to endorse companies’ executive remuneration policies evoked the most opposition. Well-known shareholder activist, Theo Botha also criticized companies for failing to disclose sufficient details on their remuneration policies. A disconnect between the performance of companies and their executives’ pay was also noted. It is recommended that the non-binding vote on executive remuneration be revised and more investor education provided. The growing wage gap in South Africa has far-reaching socio-economic consequences. This study investigated the nature of executive remuneration issues raised by shareholder activists in the country. An analysis of 24 510 votes cast by 17 investment managers at 347 companies listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in 2013 revealed that the vote to endorse companies’ executive remuneration policies evoked the most opposition. Well-known shareholder activist, Theo Botha also criticized companies for failing to disclose sufficient details on their remuneration policies. A disconnect between the performance of companies and their executives’ pay was also noted. It is recommended that the non-binding vote on executive remuneration be revised and more investor education provided. 
  • Reviewing State-Owned Entities’ Governance Landscape in South Africa

    Kanyane, Modimowabarwa Hendrick; HUMAN SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL; Sausi, Kombi; HUMAN SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (SUNMeDIA, 2015-12-21)
    The current state-owned entities’ governance landscape ranges from fragmented accountability frameworks to convoluted array of parent entities, subsidiaries and sub-subsidiaries. The article reviews the state-owned entities’ governance landscape to unravel underlying inconsistencies and contradictions and thereby provides a compelling argument for opting to create an overarching state-owned entities’ governance and seamless legislative framework. As the proposed overarching option is not an absolute resolve, the study tests whether the option could assist in arriving at a liberating praxis that would straddle though fulfilling corporate and developmental aspirations of the state. The study perused research reports and literature review applying qualitative methods.

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