Fairness quality: a conceptual model and multiple-item scale for assessing firms’ fairness – an exploratory study

B. Nguyen, Lyndon Simkin, P. Klaus, J. Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)


Scholars suggest that fairness is a precursor to ethical firm behaviour. Existing research suggests that (1) commonly used single-item fairness measures lack reliability and validity, and (2) single-item scales do not contribute to understanding fairness as a multidimensional concept. Using the means-end framework, we develop a measure of fairness quality (FQ) of service experience. We conceptualise, construct, refine and test the FQ scale over multiple stages of data collection. Using the soft-laddering interviewing technique, we initially explore FQ attributes. Subsequently, we design and conduct two surveys to test the FQ measure. The final scale contains 18 items in four dimensions: transparency, associations, moderations and process. The FQ scale demonstrates good psychometric properties, passing all reliability and validity tests. The scale extends existing research on fairness and provides a new conceptualisation of FQ. Marketers are encouraged to manage their FQ systematically to stimulate social and ethical behaviour. We present theoretical and managerial implications, with future research directions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1181-1206
JournalJournal of Marketing Management
Issue number11-12
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015


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  • fairness
  • ethics
  • quality
  • scale development
  • conceptual framework
  • metric

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