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Dismissive and Resistant Defiance Valerie Braithwaite Regulatory Institutions Network Australian National University University of Leeds, 25-26 June, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Dismissive and Resistant Defiance Valerie Braithwaite Regulatory Institutions Network Australian National University University of Leeds, 25-26 June, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dismissive and Resistant Defiance Valerie Braithwaite Regulatory Institutions Network Australian National University University of Leeds, 25-26 June, 2009

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6 Defiance is a signal that individuals express attitudinally or behaviourally toward an authority (and shared with others) that communicates unwillingness to follow the authority’s prescribed path without question or protest. Any of us can experience, indeed practice defiance if the circumstances are right. ● ●

7 are sets of beliefs and attitudes that sum up how individuals feel about and wish to position themselves in relation to another social entity, in this case a tax authority. Motivational postures send social signals or messages to the authority about how that authority is regarded. ● ● Motivational postures

8 Authority threatens everyone, by virtue of being an authority. As an authority’s threat increases, taxpayers use their motivational postures to adjust their social distance and establish a comfort zone for themselves in relation to the authority. Different contexts bring to the fore different postures, and different postures direct individuals to make different responses, some obliging and deferential, others adversarial and dismissive. ● ● The Central Ideas of Threat … Agency and Social Distance ●

9 Commitment Capitulation Resistance Disengagement Game playing ● ● Five motivational postures: ● ● ●

10 How Do We Measure Socially Proximal Postures? Commitment (alpha reliability coefficient =.82; homogeneity ratio =.43) Paying tax is the right thing to do. Paying tax is a responsibility that should be willingly accepted by all Australians. I feel a moral obligation to pay my tax. Paying my tax ultimately advantages everyone. I think of tax paying as helping the government do worthwhile things. Overall, I pay my tax with good will. I resent paying tax. (reversed) I accept responsibility for paying my fair share of tax. Note: Respondents were asked to rate each statement on a five-point scale from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5).

11 How Do We Measure Socially Proximal Postures? Capitulation (alpha reliability coefficient =.63; homogeneity ratio =.27) No matter how cooperative or uncooperative the Tax Office is, the best policy is to always be cooperative with them If you cooperate with the Tax Office, they are likely to be cooperative with you. Even if the Tax office finds that I am doing something wrong, they will respect me in the long run as long as I admit my mistakes. The Tax Office is encouraging to those who have difficulty meeting their obligations through no fault of their own. The tax system may not be perfect, but it works well enough for most of us. Note: Respondents were asked to rate each statement on a five-point scale from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5).

12 How Do We Measure Socially Distal Postures? Resistance (alpha reliability coefficient =.68; homogeneity ratio =.31) As a society, we need more people willing to take a stand against the Tax Office. It’s important not to let the Tax Office push you around. The Tax Office is more interested in catching you for doing the wrong thing, than helping you do the right thing. It's impossible to satisfy the Tax Office completely. Once the Tax Office has you branded as a non-compliant taxpayer, they will never change their mind. If you don't cooperate with the Tax Office, they will get tough with you. Note: Respondents were asked to rate each statement on a five-point scale from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5).

13 How Do We Measure Socially Distal Postures? Disengagement (alpha reliability coefficient =.64; homogeneity ratio =.27) I don't really know what the Tax Office expects of me and I'm not about to ask. I don't care if I am not doing the right thing by the Tax Office. If I find out that I am not doing what the Tax Office wants, I’m not going to lose any sleep over it. I personally don’t think that there is much the Tax Office can do to me to make me pay tax if I don’t want to. If the Tax Office gets tough with me, I will become uncooperative with them. Note: Respondents were asked to rate each statement on a five-point scale from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5).

14 How Do We Measure Socially Distal Postures? Game playing (alpha reliability coefficient =.69; homogeneity ratio =.32) I enjoy talking to friends about loopholes in the tax system. I like the game of finding the grey area of tax law. I enjoy the challenge of minimizing the tax I have to pay. I enjoy spending time working out how changes in the tax system will affect me. The Tax Office respects taxpayers who can give them a run for their money. Note: Respondents were asked to rate each statement on a five-point scale from strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5).

15 How are Motivational Postures Distributed?

16 Critical but Accept System ● Collapsing Motivational Postures into Dimensions of Defiance ● Commitment and Capitulation through Resistance (Resistant Defiance) Cynical and Reject System Degree of Disengagement and Game Playing (Dismissive Defiance)

17 The Empirically Derived Motivational Postures and their Contributions to Defiance Discourse in Taxation Motivational postureDescription (tax-contextualized)Effect on defiance Commitment to the regulatory system and its goals Expressing support for taxation and willingly accepting a personal responsibility to pay Disables defiance Capitulation to authorityRecognising the tax authority’s power and endorsing a ritualistic “keep them happy” philosophy Disables defiance Resistance against authorityOpposing tax authority and accusing it of abuse of power Enables resistant defiance Disengagement from authorityDismissing tax authority demands and threats Enables dismissive defiance Game playing with law and authority Enjoying tax minimising games with tax officers as competitors Enables dismissive defiance

18 Disillusionment with Democracy Values (seeking status, harmony) Perceived Deterrence Coping Styles (thinking morally, feeling oppressed) Perceived Institutional Integrity Trust Defiance (resistance, dismissiveness) Social Modelling (bending rules, winning, aggressive adviser, honest no-risk adviser)

19 A composite structural equation model predicting resistance

20 Resistance is about grievance. Grievance involves more than the tax system, it includes the democracy itself. Constraining grievance is a morally obligated pathway. Are there opportunities for managing resistant defiance? Yes, around perceived deterrence, perceived tax system integrity and disillusionment with the democracy – with different consequences. ● ● What is our best model of resistant defiance? ●

21 A composite structural equation model predicting dismissiveness

22 Dismissiveness is less about grievance and more about freedom from authority. We see a competitive pathway that leads to the alternative authority of the aggressive tax planning industry. Grievance fuels the competitive pathway involving alternative authorities, as does the desire for status and being a winner. Constraining the grievance-competitive pathway is a morally obligated pathway. Are there opportunities for managing dismissive defiance? Yes, around perceived deterrence, disillusionment with the democracy and alternative authorities – with different consequences. ● ● What is our best model of dismissive defiance? ● ●

23 When authority threatens, three selves go forth to face a potential enemy: A Data Based Theoretical Account of Defiance: Proposition 1a-1c a moral self a status seeking self a democratic collective self (a) (b) (c)

24 When a moral self is under-valued: A Data Based Theoretical Account of Defiance: Proposition 2a-2c the morally obligated pathway is weakened and the way is cleared for defiance. (a) When a status seeking self can’t be expressed within the authority’s domain: a competitive pathway to defiance comes into being, strengthened by alternative authorities that provide resources to defeat the government agenda. (b) When a democratic collective self is betrayed: a grievance pathway to defiance comes into being that is shared with others and expressed as protest against the government (c)

25 Culture of respect – Strazdin’s (2000) concept of emotional work (help, share/empathize, regulate) Institutional integrity – a meaningful and valued purpose achieved with justice (procedural and distributive) Authentic, open and accountable deliberation – opportunity to show benefits, to acknowledge and diligently monitor risks Appreciation of cooperation ● ● Implications for Governance ● ●

26 Additional Institutional Arrangements Restorative Justice? Deliberative Democracy? Both Enable Values-based Dialogue


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