International Marketing

International Marketing

The article talks about consumer ethics and the influencing factors. The research is carried out in China to unravel the elements impacting Chinese consumer’s ethical response. The article emphasizes the impact of collectivism, religion and attitude towards business on consumer ethics (Arli, 2014). It argues that religion remains the major influencing element of consumer behavior. In the researchers, the three are further elaborated using various dimensions to show their relationship with consumer ethics. The dimensions include active, passive, deceptive and no harm. Active concentrates on those consumers who aim to profit from transactions which are not legal; passive looks at consumers benefiting from transactions which pose a question; deceptive majors on consumers profiting from legal but deceitful transactions while no harm looks at consumers transacting in harmless activities.

The article defines collectivism as emphasizing and prioritizing on group beliefs rather than individuality. It states that individuals in a collective culture are more likely to embrace a communal decision making (Bagozzi, 1991). Emphasis is placed on sharing and individualism is discouraged. The article, however, fails to give a thorough explanation on the impact of group beliefs on the consumer ethical decision making. It fails to illustrate how collectivism will either benefit or negatively influence the ethical decision making of the consumer.

The article also emphasizes on attitude towards business as an influencing factor. It describes it as a resultant factor of individual’s behaviors and a major influential element to the passive factor in consumer ethical decision making (Al-Khatib, 1995). It outlines that a person’s business attitude is influenced by their ethical beliefs in certain unethical situations. The article still fails to illustrate how the attitude towards business influences consumer ethical decisions.

The article looks at religion and illustrates China as having Buddhist and Taoist. It, however, considers it inefficient to base their religious research on the two branches. The article goes on to illustrate the types of religious researches in the United States. It fails to unravel the relationship between the two types of research and their impact on the consumer’s ethical behavior (Ang, 2001). The author just points out the United States survey and gives a brief description. There is no further illustration of why the United States was chosen and the relationship it had with China.

The results of the research showed that most of the Chinese consumers deem actively profiting from illegal transactions as unethical (Al-Khatib, 1995). They also perceived deceptive as more unethical than passive which was seemingly ethical. No harm was considered ethical and accepted by the Chinese population. The relationship between the three variables and the dimensions has been outlaid, but the influence it has on the Chinese ethical behaviour is not shown. The article fails to describe both the positive and negative impacts the variables have on ethics.

The article described that religion had the biggest impact on consumer behaviour yet it shows that China has the highest number of atheists. This depicts that the results of the survey based on religion give minute impact on ethical behaviour. The research only considered a minute proportion of the sampling population. This resulted in being biased thus decreasing reliability on the results. The research also laid its basis on only three variables, that is, collectivism, religion and attitude toward business. More variables should have been considered to enhance reliability and accuracy of findings and also to unravel the impacts on a broader perspective.



Al-Khatib, J., Dobie, K., & Vitell, S. J. (1995). Consumer ethics in developing countries: An empirical investigation. Journal of Euro-Marketing, 4, 87–105.

Ang, S. H., Cheng, P. S., Lim, E. A. C., & Tambyah, S. K. (2001). Spot the difference: Consumer responses towards counterfeits. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 18(3), 219–235.

Arli, D., & Tjiptono, F. (2014). The end of religion? Examining the role of religiousness, materialism and long-term orientation on consumer ethics in Indonesia. Journal of Business Ethics, 123(3), 385–400.

Bagozzi, R., & Phillips, L. (1991). Assessing construct validity in organizational research. Administrative Science Quarterly, 36(3), 421–458.



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