It's alright, it's just a bluff: Why do corporate codes reduce lying, but not bluffing?

Jörg R. Rottenburger, Craig Carter, Lutz Kaufmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Purchasing operates in an environment that frequently provides incentives for deception. Using self-concept maintenance theory and social learning theory, this article compares two distinct manifestations of deception in buyer–supplier negotiations: lying and bluffing. Scenario-based experiments provide evidence that corporate codes diminish severe manifestations of deception (lying) but not less severe ones (bluffing), and that bluffing is considered a negotiation skill. These findings reveal the boundary conditions of self-concept maintenance theory, which is applicable to lying but not to bluffing. Moreover, this article outlines an agenda for future research on deception in buyer–supplier relationships – an important but under-researched subject within our discipline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)30-39
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Purchasing and Supply Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • Behavioral Supply Management
  • Deception
  • Negotiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Marketing


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