The World of Whistleblowing: From the Altruist to the Avenger

Milton Heumann, Al Friedes, Lance Cassak, Wendy Wright, Ela Joshi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


This exploratory study investigates the world of whistleblowing. The topic has produced a great deal of discussion but little clear understanding of the contexts in which whistleblowers act or the paths they follow, or even a critical understanding of whistleblowing as a social and legal practice. The study articulates some of these boundaries through a mixed-method analysis. The authors reviewed extant quantitative data and conducted a series of interviews in order to be able to sketch a plausible picture of the current state of whistleblowing. The results were used to construct a typology of whistleblowers that provides a conceptual shorthand for the goals, motivations, and contexts that define whistleblowing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-52
Number of pages28
JournalPublic Integrity
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Law


  • MSPB data
  • public ethics
  • qui tam
  • whistleblower


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