Not available in 2022/23
MG4D3      Half Unit
The Dark Side of the Organisation

This information is for the 2022/23 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Jonathan Booth NAB4.20


This course is available on the CEMS Exchange, Global MSc in Management, Global MSc in Management (CEMS MIM), Global MSc in Management (MBA Exchange), MBA Exchange, MRes/PhD in Management (Employment Relations and Human Resources), MRes/PhD in Management (Employment Relations and Human Resources), MSc in Human Resources and Organisations (Human Resource Management/CIPD), MSc in Human Resources and Organisations (International Employment Relations and Human Resource Management) and MSc in Human Resources and Organisations (Organisational Behaviour). This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


Introductory OB course required. MG4C2, MG434, MG105, or equivalent course in another institution. 

Course content

In this seminar, students will learn about a variety of topics related to the dark side of the organisation, (e.g. workplace aggression, retaliation, discrimination, substance abuse, corporate corruption, extreme stakeholder responses to organisations, and the dark side of impression management/emotional intelligence). In organisational behaviour courses, topics generally cover the 'light side' of the organisation and often explore how employee motivation and behaviour can promote beneficial outcomes for the organisation, as well as investigate the precursors to these more positive behaviours. However, not all workplace behaviours and outcomes are beneficial and positive for employees and their organisations. Dark side behaviours typically lead to negative outcomes. Those who engage in these negative behaviours generally are aware that their actions can cause harm to others, their employer, and/or to them; hence, the instigator usually has intent. It is imperative that we more fully understand these behaviours and their antecedents and consequences so that we can identify these behaviours, as well as control, prevent, mitigate, or ameliorate their occurrences. 


20 hours of seminars in the LT. 2 hours of seminars in the ST.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 essay in the LT.

Indicative reading

Anand, V, Ashforth, B. E., & Joshi, M. 2005. Business as usual: The acceptance and perpetuation of corruption in organizations. Academy of Management Executive, 19, 9-23.

Andersson, L. M., & Pearson, C. M. 1999. Tit for tat? The spiraling effect of incivility in the workplace. Academy of Management Review, 24, 452-471.

Aquino, K., & Thau, S. 2009. Workplace victimization: Aggression from the target's perspective. Annual Review of Psychology, 60, 717-741.

Bacharach, S. B., Bamberger, P. A., & Doveh, E. 2008. Firefighters, critical incidents, and drinking to cope: The adequacy of unit-level performance resources as a source of vulnerability and protection. Journal of Applied Psychology, 93, 155-169.

Booth, J. E., Park, T.-Y., Zhu, L. (L.), Beauregard, T. A., Gu, F., & Emery, C. (2018). Prosocial Response to Client-Instigated Victimization: The Roles of Forgiveness and Workgroup Conflict. Journal of Applied Psychology. Advance online publication. 

Duffy, M. K., Ganster, D. C., & Pagon, M. 2002. Social undermining in the workplace. Academy of Management Journal, 45, 331-351.

Frone, M. R. 2008. Are work stressors related to employee substance use? The importance of temporal context in assessments of alcohol and illicit drug use. Journal of Applied Psychology, 93, 199-206.

Glomb, T. M., & Liao, H. 2003. Interpersonal aggression in work groups: Social influence, reciprocal, and individual effects. Academy of Management Journal, 46, 486-496.

Griffin, R.W., & Lopez Y.P. 2005. "Bad Behavior" in organizations: A review and typology for future research. Journal of Management, 31, 988-1005.

Griffin, R. W., & O'Leary-Kelly, A. M. 2004. The dark side of organizational behaviour. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

King, E. B., Shapiro, J. R., Hebl, M. R., Singletary, S. L., & Turner, S. 2006. The stigma of obesity in customer service: A mechanism for remediation and bottom-line consequences of interpersonal discrimination. Journal of Applied Psychology, 91, 579-593.

Pinto, J., Leana, C. R., & Pil, F. K. 2008. Corrupt organizations or organizations of corrupt individuals? Two types of organization-level corruption. Academy of Management Review, 33: 685-709.

Ragins, B. R., & Cornwell, J. M. 2001. Pink Triangles: Antecedents and consequences of perceived workplace discrimination against gay and lesbian employees. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86, 1244-1261

Vaughan, D. 1999. The dark side of organizations: Mistake, misconduct, and disaster. Annual Review of Sociology, 25, 271-305.


Essay (40%, 1500 words) and video (20%) in the ST.
Class participation (20%) and group presentation (20%) in the LT.

The video assessment submitted by students in ST consists of a take-home video presentation.

Key facts

Department: Management

Total students 2021/22: 46

Average class size 2021/22: 44

Controlled access 2021/22: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Team working
  • Problem solving