Open Access

Ethical leadership in Chinese organizations: Developing a scale

Frontiers of Business Research in ChinaSelected Publications from Chinese Universities20115:179

Received: 19 June 2010

Published: 19 May 2011


In light of a series of ethical scandals in China in recent years, this research aims to develop a reliable and valid scale to measure ethical leadership, namely the “ethical leadership measure (ELM).” Our results show that ELM is strongly and positively correlated with scales for authentic leadership, ethical leadership, idealized influence, and a recently-developed leadership virtues questionnaire (LVQ); and negatively correlated with laissez-faire leadership and passive management by exception. ELM is also found to be positively related to followers’ job satisfaction, affective commitment, trust in leader, organizational citizenship behavior, and moral identity, and negatively related to followers’ intention to quit.


ethical leadershipmoral identityaffective commitment