What Makes Whistleblowers So Threatening?; Comment on “Cultures of Silence and Cultures of Voice: The Role of Whistleblowing in Healthcare Organisations”

Document Type : Commentary


Department of Government and Politics, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA


Whistleblowing is defined by the retaliation that those who speak out receive. Why some organizations find it almost impossible not to retaliate depends more on the properties of the organization than the act of the individual whistleblower. These properties are, to greater or lesser degree, present in all organizations. Not all organizations retaliate against whistleblowers, but the whistleblower represents a threat to every organization. And to every individual within the organization, because the whistleblower challenges the morality and ethics of the rest of us.


Main Subjects

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  4. Alford CF. Think No Evil: Korean Values in the Age of Globalization. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press; 1999.
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  6. Alford CF. Whistleblower protection policy. American Governance, 5 vols. Detroit, Michigan: Macmillan Reference; 2016.