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What is virtue? Advancing the conceptualization of virtue to inform positive organizational inquiry


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Newstead, TP ORCID: 0000-0003-4678-7593, Macklin, R ORCID: 0000-0001-7191-0616, Dawkins, S ORCID: 0000-0002-4073-6907 and Martin, A ORCID: 0000-0003-0109-1218 2018 , 'What is virtue? Advancing the conceptualization of virtue to inform positive organizational inquiry' , The Academy of Management Perspectives , doi: 10.5465/amp.2016.0162.

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In order to advance theory, key concepts need to be clearly defined (e.g. Kozlowski & Klein, 2000; Suddaby, 2010). Scholars in the field of positive organizational inquiry are engaging in meaningful work on the processes, practices, and attributes which enable optimal human and organizational functioning. Much of this work incorporates the concept of virtue as an integral part of positive organizing. However, we argue that the efficacy of this scholarship is undermined by poorly defined and misconstrued conceptualizations of virtue, which vary widely in their scope and perspective (Gotsis & Grimani, 2015). This article draws on the philosophy of Aristotelian virtue ethics and the deep ontological framework of critical realism to articulate a clear definition of virtue, and a five factor framework for determining what is virtuous in which contexts. These contributions provide the foundation for a stronger virtue-based perspective in positive organizational inquiry.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Newstead, TP and Macklin, R and Dawkins, S and Martin, A
Keywords: management education and development, management spirituality and religion, organizational behavior, ethics and codes of conduct, social Issues in management, organizational development and change
Journal or Publication Title: The Academy of Management Perspectives
Publisher: Academy of Management
ISSN: 1558-9080
DOI / ID Number: 10.5465/amp.2016.0162
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Copyright 2018 Academy of Management Perspectives

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