Fred Walumbwa, the leadership researcher at Florida International University who has retracted six papers for what appear to be problematic data, now has an impressive mega-correction in the form of an “addendum.”
The paper, “Relationships between Authentic Leadership, Moral Courage, and Ethical and Pro-Social Behaviors,” was published in Business Ethics Quarterly in October 2011, by Walumbwa and two colleagues, Sean Hannah and Bruce Avolio.
Here’s the abstract for the paper, which has been cited 18 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge:
Organizations constitute morally-complex environments, requiring organization members to possess levels of moral courage sufficient to promote their ethical action, while refraining from unethical actions when faced with temptations or pressures. Using a sample drawn from a military context, we explored the antecedents and consequences of moral courage. Results from this four-month field study demonstrated that authentic leadership was positively related to followers’ displays of moral courage. Further, followers’ moral courage fully mediated the effects of authentic leadership on followers’ ethical and pro-social behaviors. Theoretical and practical implications for further integrating the work on moral courage, authentic leadership and ethics are discussed.
The addendum, which was issued in June 2014, is long enough — 650 words — to have its own abstract (and is also behind a paywall):
The authors provide this addendum to the following article to provide corrections to the results reported and further explanation of the structural equation modeling techniques utilized …
And how! The first paragraph refers to three errors, the second elaborates on a model the authors used, and the last two describe new tests performed, and their results.
Hannah, the Tylee Wilson Chair of Business Ethics and Professor of Management at the Wake Forest University School of Business, characterized the issues with the paper as “minor reporting errors” that required “clarification”:
The same claimant that has been targeting Dr. Walumbwa’s other articles made claims against that article at BEQ. After his inquiry into the matter, however, the editor on Dec 3, 2013 reported to the authors that they had satisfactorily responded to all the claimant’s claims. The authors and editor did agree that an addendum would be useful to clarify some matters, which did not in any way challenge the findings of the article, and those clarifications were what was published in the addendum …