Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to use survey data to examine the impact of culture on current and future accounting and auditing professionals' intent to be whistle‐blowers in a Chinese cultural society. Design/methodology/approach – The paper examines intent to whistle‐blow and factors influencing whistle‐blowing, using survey data collected by the authors. Findings – It was found that a majority of respondents believe that a general sense of morality was the most important factor to encourage whistle‐blowing, with abiding by the policy of their organization as the second; it was also found that guanxi , fear of retaliation, and fear of media coverage may discourage whistle‐blowing in a Chinese society. Research limitations/implications – The data are all from Confucian societies, which perhaps limits its usefulness elsewhere. Practical implications – The paper will help auditors, accountants, and policy makers to design policies that encourage whistle‐blowing. Originality/value – The paper uses original survey data collected by the authors, and the analysis will enable policy makers and professional accountants to anticipate and predict whistle‐blowing, a key factor in improving financial management and reporting, and possibly undermining auditor independence, audit quality, and the quality of financial reporting.
Managerial Auditing Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 23, 2008
Keywords: China; Confucianism; Auditing; Accountants; Whistleblowing; Ethics
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