Explicit risk of getting caught does not affect unethical behavior

Eyal Gamliel*, Eyal Peer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Research showed that given the opportunity, people behave dishonestly only to the degree that will allow them to maintain a positive self-concept. These experiments did not include the probability of getting caught cheating, although in everyday life, this risk always exists. If it is shown that people behave more honestly when faced with an explicit risk of getting caught, the ecological validity of these experiments may be at risk. This study showed that explicit risk, framed as the probability of getting caught or as the complementary probability of not getting caught, did not reduce participants' dishonest behavior relative to no risk. These findings support the ecological validity of previous research on unethical behavior.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1281-1288
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013


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