Sanchez-Runde, C., Nardon, L., Steers, R.M. 2013. “The Cultural Roots of Ethical Conflicts in Global Business”, Journal of Business Ethics, September 2013, 16(4): 689-701.

Abstract

This study examines the cultural roots of ethical conflicts in the global business environment. It begins with a brief look at worldviews on ethical behavior in general. Based on this, it is argued that an in-depth understanding of ethical conflicts has been hampered by an overreliance on Western models and viewpoints. Three common sources, or bases, of ethical conflicts are discussed as they relate to business practices, including conflicts over tastes and preferences, the relative importance of moral imperatives compared to legal requirements, and people’s level of tolerance for different values among others. It is then argued that an understanding of ethical conflicts can be facilitated through different levels of understanding, including the meaning of universal values, the relationship between values and practices, and the existence of multiple levels of conflict within the same organizations or industries. These specific and interrelated ingredients in cross-cultural ethical conflicts form the basis for a broader discussion of the meaning of truth as it relates to such conflicts. The paper concludes with the need for more research that is cross-cultural and multidisciplinary in order to improve theory building and managerial practice.
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Nardon, L. & Aten, K. 2012. “The Value Of Virtual Worlds: The Role Of Categorization In Technology Assessment”, Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 13(10), Article 4.

Abstract

Virtual worlds offer great potential for supporting the collaborative work of geographically distributed teams. However, reports indicate the existence of substantial barriers to the acceptance and use of virtual worlds in business settings. In this paper, we explore how individuals’ interpretations of virtual worlds influence their judgments of the value of the technology. We conducted a qualitative analysis set in the context of a large computer and software company that was in the process of adopting virtual worlds for distributed collaboration. We identified interpretations of virtual worlds that suggest three mental categories: virtual worlds as a medium, virtual worlds as a place, and virtual worlds as an extension of reality. We associated these mental categories with different criteria for assessing the value of virtual worlds in a business setting. This study contributes particularly to the acceptance of virtual worlds but also more generally to the understanding of technology acceptance by demonstrating that the relative importance of the criteria for assessing a technology varies with potential users’ interpretations and mental categorizations.
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Steers, R.M., Sanchez-Runde, C., Nardon, L. 2012. “Leadership in a Global Context: New directions in research and theory”, Journal of World Business, 47(4): 479-482.

Abstract

The goal of this special issue is to present a set of articles that, collectively, explores the interrelationships between national culture, leadership, and organizational behavior. Our hope is that these articles will summarize where the field currently stands, as well as suggest new directions for future research and theory development on this important topic. To achieve this, we include 14 articles from authors representing 13 countries. The methodologies used here include meta-analyses, case studies, and interview studies, although the majority represents conceptual model building based on critical analyses of existing theories and research. Management implications are discussed.
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Steers, R.M., Sanchez-Runde, C., Nardon, L. 2012. “Culture, cognition and managerial leadership”, Asia Pacific Business Review, 18(3): 425-439.

Abstract

Much of the research on global leadership focuses on specific traits that managers and leaders should possess. While the literature acknowledges the importance of cultural differences in influencing both leadership and followership, it largely ignores differences in cognitive processes that can influence how attitudes are developed and behaviours are manifested in local environments as they relate to leadership. With this in mind, this paper examines the role of culture and cognitive processes in leader behaviour, and works to explain why such differences exist across regions. The example of China is used to illustrate the validity of this approach. Implications for research, theory development, and management practice are discussed.
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Nardon, L. Aten, K. 2008. “Beyond a Better Mousetrap: A Cultural Analysis of the Adoption of Ethanol in Brazil”, Journal of World Business, 43 (3):261-273.

Abstract

Complex technologies develop within technological systems that include, in addition to discrete technologies, organizations (e.g., manufacturing firms, investment banks), scientific elements (e.g., teaching and research programs), and legislative elements (e.g., regulations). The tangible aspects of technologies do not alone determine their end configuration or success; rather, social and cultural practices, expectations, and relationships influence the development of technologies just as technologies influence these factors. We argue that culture provides actors with logic principles with which to construct action, influencing the trajectory of technological systems by reinforcing a process of path dependent development. We analyze the case of ethanol adoption in Brazil. Brazil’s adoption of an ethanol-fueled transportation system derives from a pattern of adaptation in response to salient issues. We argue that a unique characteristic of Brazilian culture, jeitinho, influenced the development of the Brazil’s ethanol-fueled transportation system.
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