Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance

William Eugene SHAFER, Zhihong WANG

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentationPresentation

Abstract

This study is the first to examine the relationships among Machiavellianism, social norms and taxpayer intentions to fraudulently overstate their deductions. Recent studies have found significant direct relationships between reported social norms and tax compliance intentions. Based on such findings, they have suggested that tax authorities may improve compliance through educational or media campaigns designed to influence social norms. We argue that such conclusions are premature because these studies have not considered the implications of fundamental personality traits such as Machiavellianism for the social norm/tax compliance link.

In the current paper we theorize and empirically document that (1) high Machiavellian taxpayers report significantly less ethical social norms, suggesting that reported social norms are influenced by cognitive biases such as social projection and Machiavellian cynicism; (2) reported social norms are, in general, significantly associated with tax evasion intentions; and (3) social norms partially mediate the relationship between Machiavellianism and tax evasion. In light of our findings, we call for additional research on the interactive effects of personality traits and social influences on tax compliance, which should provide useful insights into the potential effectiveness of interventions designed to influence social norms.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2017
Event29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond - Berjaya Times Square Hotel Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Duration: 5 Nov 20178 Nov 2017
https://www.apconference.org/29th-apc/

Conference

Conference29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond
CountryMalaysia
CityKuala Lumpur
Period5/11/178/11/17
OtherUnitar Univeristy/California State University Fresno
Internet address

Fingerprint

Machiavellianism
Social norms
Tax compliance
Tax evasion
Personality traits
Cynicism
Deduction
Tax
Authority
Cognitive bias
Social influence
Education

Cite this

SHAFER, W. E., & WANG, Z. (2017). Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance. 29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
SHAFER, William Eugene ; WANG, Zhihong. / Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance. 29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
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SHAFER, WE & WANG, Z 2017, 'Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance', 29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 5/11/17 - 8/11/17.

Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance. / SHAFER, William Eugene; WANG, Zhihong.

2017. 29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentationPresentation

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SHAFER WE, WANG Z. Machiavellianism, Social Norms and Taxpayer Compliance. 2017. 29th Asian-Pacific Conference on International Accounting Issues 2017 : Disruptive innovation/technologies: Accounting & beyond, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.