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From Charm to Harm: A Content‐Analytic Review of Sexual Harassment Court Cases Involving Workplace Romance

From Charm to Harm: A Content‐Analytic Review of Sexual Harassment Court Cases Involving... We reviewed U.S. federal and state sexual harassment court cases involving a prior workplace romance between the plaintiff and alleged harasser. Results of our content analysis show that, unlike employees’ decisions, judges’ decisions can be predicted from legal but not ethically salient extralegal case features. Hence, when compared to prior research, our study reveals the following discrepancy: judges follow a traditional legal model, whereas employees follow an ethical model when making decisions about romance‐harassment cases. Our study also reveals that the mere presence (versus absence) of a prior romance reduces the likelihood of a plaintiff’s success in a harassment case. We discuss implications for management practice and research from the perspective of legal and ethical decision making. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Management Research: The Journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management Emerald Publishing

From Charm to Harm: A Content‐Analytic Review of Sexual Harassment Court Cases Involving Workplace Romance

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1536-5433
DOI
10.2753/JMR1536-5433060102
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

We reviewed U.S. federal and state sexual harassment court cases involving a prior workplace romance between the plaintiff and alleged harasser. Results of our content analysis show that, unlike employees’ decisions, judges’ decisions can be predicted from legal but not ethically salient extralegal case features. Hence, when compared to prior research, our study reveals the following discrepancy: judges follow a traditional legal model, whereas employees follow an ethical model when making decisions about romance‐harassment cases. Our study also reveals that the mere presence (versus absence) of a prior romance reduces the likelihood of a plaintiff’s success in a harassment case. We discuss implications for management practice and research from the perspective of legal and ethical decision making.

Journal

Management Research: The Journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 1, 2008

Keywords: Sexual harassment; Office romance; Relationships; Legal and ethical decision making

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