Impact of an Ethics Presentation Used in America and Adapted for Italy: A Teaching Note

Accounting Education, Vol. 18, 2009

23 Pages Posted: 23 Sep 2008 Last revised: 2 Oct 2008

See all articles by Gheula Canarutto

Gheula Canarutto

Bocconi University

Katherine Taken Smith

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi-College of Business

Murphy Smith

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi-Department of Accounting

Abstract

The purpose of this study is twofold: 1) to determine if an ethics presentation at an Italian university can change student perceptions of ethics; and 2) to compare results of this study with previously published results from US students. The ethics presentation, previously developed by Smith et al. (2005) for accounting and business classes, made available on the Internet, was adapted and used in classes in Italy. Like the US, Italy has faced significant financial scandals and corporate failures in recent years. Both Italian and US penal laws have been changed to prevent future financial frauds, but there are limits to what laws can accomplish. The ethics presentation described in this paper was an effort to encourage students to consider the importance of ethics. The impact of the presentation on Italian student perspectives is described. In addition, a comparison is made of the impact of the presentation in Italy and in the US, which shows that students in both countries regard ethics as a very important topic.

Keywords: ethics, ethical decision-making, accounting curriculum

JEL Classification: M41, M14

Suggested Citation

Canarutto, Gheula and Smith, Katherine Taken and Smith, Murphy, Impact of an Ethics Presentation Used in America and Adapted for Italy: A Teaching Note. Accounting Education, Vol. 18, 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1272109

Gheula Canarutto

Bocconi University ( email )

Milan, MI
Italy

Katherine Taken Smith

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi-College of Business ( email )

6300 Ocean Drive
Corpus Christi, TX 78412
United States

Murphy Smith (Contact Author)

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi-Department of Accounting ( email )

6300 Ocean Dr
Corpus Christi, TX 78412
United States

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