Trust and Morality in a Post-Truth World

Annual ENOP Symposium 2023 

March 23-24 2023, Paris

March 23, 10.00 – 17.00 

March 24, 10.00 – 13.00 

Business meeting: 14.00-16.00 

Location: Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, 54 Boulevard Raspail, Paris.


As the UN opens to accept the advocacy and expert insights of Psychologists on citizen and worker well-being post-pandemic (IAAP 2023), this symposium seeks to surface the current evidence on active trust and moral agency in contemporary workplaces. The presentations seek to bring ENOP members up-to-date with emergent evidence and provide a forum for discussion of both policy and practical implications. 

Topics and presenters:      23rd March 

10.00 -10.30Introduction – (Rosalind Searle, Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow & Finian Buckley, Dublin City University Business School).
10.30 – 11.15Trust within the Workplace – A overview of key constructs and concepts. Part1. (Finian Buckley, Dublin City University Business School)
11.45 – 13:00The Impact of Trust on Workplace Dynamics and Outcomes: Research insights from different levels and methods. Part2. (Finian Buckley, Dublin City University Business School)
14:00 – 15.00Trust, Distrust and Vulnerability in a Cyber Security Context (Rosalind Searle,Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow)
15:30 -17:00Motivated Trust in Artificial Intelligence at Work: The case of HRM Systems and HRM Stakeholders. (Guido Hertel, University of Muenster)

Topics and presenters:      24th March

10:00-11.15 “It’s Business”: A Qualitative study of the dynamics of Moral Injury and Well-Being (Karina Nielsen, Sheffield University Management School)
11.15 – 11.30Break 
11.30 – 12.45“How organisations accomplish wrongdoing through the moral agency lens. The conceptualisation of organisational moral disengagement” (Roberta Fida, Norwich Business School)
12:45-13:00Wrap up – (Rosalind Searle, Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow & Finian Buckley, Dublin City University Business School).


Symposium Abstracts 

PRESENTERPresentation Title & Overview 
Finian Buckley“The Impact of Trust on Workplace Dynamics and Outcomes: An Overview” The presentation will give a short precise of trust research and the significant role played by European scholars in establishing cohesion within the trust research arena. The presentation will map the evolution of research on trust in the workplace, isolating key insights and milestones in the development of the nomological network of trust.Within this, research that demonstrates how trust is linked with a variety of key workplace outcomes, including performance are shared. Emerging trust research methods including neurological imaging are also noted.   The presentation serves as a broad foundation for the other papers that seek to deliver deeper insights from contemporary  trust and morality research. 
Rosalind Searle“Trust, distrust and cyber attacks: what work psychology can contribute” Cybersecurity attacks are growing in both their scale and effectiveness, They offer a pertinent context within which to examine the currently under-explored dynamics of trust and distrust and their consequences for organisations and their employees, with these attacks wreaking havoc in organisations, costly both in financial and reputational terms. In this presentation I outlined a dynamic, multi-level process approach to understanding organisational responses following an initial attack by unseen exploiter. Drawing from events theory, a multi-level conceptual trust model is devised drawing on the interrelations between the emotional, cognitive and social processes that these attacks can produce, by distinguishing two paths that reveal markedly different durations, magnitudes, and level of  relational and threat consequences. These dynamic experiences of trust elucidate vulnerability and its experience and management for the targeted individual, regarding key organisational actors. The presentation will show the formation of an anchoring event that creates enduring changes to multiple relationships within the organisation with consequences for individual, team and organisational  resilience and risk
Guido Hertel“Motivated Trust in AI: An Integrative Model Considering Multiple Stakeholder Views in HRM” Abstract: Artificial Intelligence (AI) is increasingly used across human resource management (HRM) functions, yet successful use is contingent upon these tools being trusted within organizations. Whereas longstanding cognitive models of trust have been extended to technology and AI as the target of trust, motivational influences on trust in technologies have been neglected thus far. However, the consideration of motivational drivers is important to understand and predict different stakeholder views on trust in AI. We integrate cognitive frameworks of trust in AI with more recent approaches of trust motivation stemming from interpersonal trust research. Based on this integrative model, we specify separate motivational drivers and cognitive processes for trust in AI for four separate HRM stakeholder perspectives: the employer, decision makers, decision targets, and HR professionals. Particularly the perspective of HR professionals has been neglected so far, despite the fact that this group is often closely involved with the implementation of AI systems and may see considerable changes to their job tasks after AI adoption. We discuss the theoretical implications of the different stakeholder perspectives for future research, and outline specific practical implications of our integrative model.   
Karina Nielsen“It’s Business”: A qualitative study of the dynamics of moral injury” Abstract  :Moral injury has primarily been studied from a clinical perspective, aiming to clinically assess, diagnose and treat the outcomes of moral injurious experiences in healthcare and military settings. Public scandals such as Enron suggest that moral transgressions may also occur in for-profit business settings. Little is known about the lived experiences of those who have had their moral values transgressed, particularly in business settings. In this qualitative study, we examine the lived experiences of 16 workers in for-profit organizations who identified as having suffered moral injury. Using semi-structured narrative interviews, our findings offer insights into the values that workers feel are transgressed and the pathways between morally injurious experiences and the long-term outcomes. Experiencing moral transgressions has a profound impact on participants as it presents a threat to their identity, however, participants employed emotion- and problem-focused coping to minimise the impact during the event. Participants exited the organisation and in often changed careers to protect themselves from further injury and to make up for the wrongdoing. This study advances our understanding of the experience of moral injury in business settings and leads to the development of a conceptual model of the pathways of moral injury in business settings. 
Roberta Fida“How organisations accomplish wrongdoing through the moral agency lens. The conceptualisation of organisational moral disengagement” Prior study of morality at work has identified the mechanisms that enable individuals to morally disengage (Bandura, 2016; Newman et al., 2020; Ogunfowora et al., 2021). However, less is known about how wrongdoing is accomplished though the collective suspension of morality. Bandura applied his understanding of moral agency and moral disengagement theory to corporate contexts and reflected that much moral disengagement may occur collectively (Bandura, 2016; Bandura et al., 2000; White et al., 2009). However, he did not conceptualize organizational moral disengagement as a distinct theoretical construct to refer to how organizations accomplish wrongdoing as collective agents. Earlier studies in the educational field did examine collective moral disengagement in classrooms (Gini et al., 2014, 2015; Thornberg et al., 2019). However, given their focus on children bullying behavior in class they conceptualized it in terms of diffusion of personal moral disengagement rather than a construct in its own rights. In our study, we defined organizational moral disengagement as the perception of how the organization justifies unethical activities with specific collective mechanisms for suspending morality in a social group. We described each of the eight mechanisms in terms of the discursive repertoires and institutionalized structures and processes by which organizations can justify wrongdoing, and hence we provided a valid and reliable way of operationalizing organizational moral disengagement. I aim to present the thoeretical conceptualisation and the results from three empirical studies

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