The Ethics of Tax Evasion: A Survey of Business Students in Poland
Robert W. McGee
Journal of Accounting, Ethics & Public Policy
Poznan University of Economics
February 12, 2006
The ethics of tax evasion has been discussed sporadically in the theological and philosophical literature for at least 500 years. Martin Crowe wrote a doctoral thesis that reviewed much of that literature in 1944. The debate revolved around about 15 issues. Over the centuries, three main views evolved on the topic.
This paper begins with a review of the literature and identifies the main issues and summarizes the three main viewpoints that have emerged over the centuries. It then reports on the results of a survey of Polish business students who were asked their opinions on the ethics of tax evasion. The survey consisted of 18 statements, representing the 15 issues and 3 viewpoints that have emerged over the centuries plus 3 statements representing more recent issues. Participants were asked to signify the extent of their agreement with each statement by placing a number from 1 to 7 in the space provided. Two hundred seventy-nine (279) usable responses were received. The data were then analyzed to determine which of the three viewpoints was dominant among the sample population. Male scores were also compared to female scores to determine if the responses differed by gender.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 32
Keywords: evade, evasion, tax, Poland, public finance, ethics, transition economy
JEL Classification: H26, A13, E62, K34, O17, P35
Date posted: January 19, 2006
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